TMA Council of NJ - Summer 2019
As the summer season comes to a close across New Jersey, your Transportation Management Associations are busy working to improve mobility and sustainability.
In this issue, we share how they are accomplishing these tasks.
BNE Real Estate Group Provides Shuttle Services for Residents at One Harrison
BNE Real Estate Group is a family-owned business with an established track record of developing thousands of luxury homes, more than one million square feet of commercial space, and manages nearly 8,000 apartments.
In spring 2019 they began leasing operations at their latest venture, One Harrison, located along the Harrison waterfront. In addition to several lifestyle amenities, BNE partnered with EZ Ride to offer their residents free shuttle service to and from the Harrison PATH station.
“The shuttle is a huge draw for residents who commute using the PATH train service at Harrison. It seamlessly connects our community with public transportation and eliminates the hassles and expense of owning a car. EZ Ride serves not only One Harrison but also two more of our residential communities - Monarch in East Rutherford and Water’s Edge in Harrison,” said Seth Cohen, Executive Vice President – Head of Operations at BNE Real Estate Group.
The Harrison PATH station was redeveloped at a cost of $256 million to include glass-enclosed, weather-protected station entrances; modern elevators widened stairs and escalators to platforms; and, possibly the most critical feature, extended platforms to accommodate longer, 10-car trains. EZ Ride operates five different shuttle services from the Harrison PATH station for various clients.
Hudson TMA hosts a Series of Bicycle Summer Safety Programs
Stride & Ride- A Bike Rodeo - On Saturday, June 15th, hundreds of Hudson County residents joined the Hudson TMA for the 12th Annual Stride & Ride- a Bike Rodeo at Gregg Park in Bayonne. Stride & Ride is a celebration of all things bicycles and is open to both children and adults.
This annual event provided attendees with a fun and interactive outdoor bicycle training program. Younger riders were taught how to ride without training wheels while riders of all ages improved their riding skills through ten obstacle courses and educational information stations. Participants also received tips on pedestrian and cyclist safety. Attendees also enjoyed entertainment, walking races, face painting, free giveaways, and games, in addition to health and safety-related information at various booths at the rodeo.
Hoboken Bike Camp - Hudson TMA is proud in its support of the Hoboken Family Alliance’s Annual Hoboken Bike Camp which was provided in 2019 at Hoboken High School during the last week of June. The goal of this five-day camp has been to teach individuals with disabilities to ride a two-wheel bicycle independently. This program is life-changing for participants and fosters acceptance, independence and inclusion.
With an 80% success rate, the camp uses specially adapted bicycles which use a roller as opposed to a rear wheel. As a result, participants become more balanced and comfortable in an accelerated time period. Through the assistance of an on-site bike technician and floor supervisors, participants advance through a series of levels and within five days, are riding independently. This camp was the first of its kind in New Jersey when it debuted in 2012 and since then, four other programs have been initiated in the State.
Traffic Safety 101 Smart Cycling - The Hudson TMA hosted a free class for adults looking to improve their cycling skills while also gaining more confidence on our local streets.
This program was offered on Saturday, June 29th and provided urban cyclists with a day of classroom and on-street instruction. Topics covered included cycling safety, accident avoidance, skill drills in addition to teaching rights and responsibilities as cyclists.
Bicycle Tourism a Focus for goHunterdon
Hunterdon County has long been a premier destination for bicyclists. The county’s winding, hilly and quiet back roads, quaint towns, historic sites, and scenic vistas draw bicyclists of all ages, making bicycle tourism a natural fit and benefit to the county’s economy.
A study by the Outdoor Industry Association released in 2017, “The Outdoor Recreation Economy”, found that bicycling participants spend $83 billion on 'trip-related' sales (bicycle tourism), and generate $97 billion in retail spending nationally.
goHunterdon recently enhanced its www.bikehunterdon.org website, adding new bicycle routes, maps, and links to “ridewithgps.com”, an app used by bicyclists that provides accurate turn by turn route directions. The maps include elevation and distance information. Routes take into consideration rider ability, skills and terrain. Routes are categorized as “road rides”, “trail rides” and “routes at county parks”. Mountain biking areas are also included.
The biggest change to bikehunterdon.org is the addition of colorful photos and information on the amenities and services available along each route including places to stay, restaurants, coffee shops, destinations, local bike shops, and where to find bicycle parking. Several of the routes highlight bed and breakfast inns, local wineries, farms, and other tourism destinations. Routes have names like “The Hogback”, “Out of Lambertville”, “Kingwood Scenic & Flat”, and the “Tewksbury Challenge”. A total of thirty four rides are featured.
The site includes information on local bicycle clubs and touring companies, as well as important bicycle safety information and New Jersey Bicycle laws.
Contact Caryl Harris, Bicycle Specialist, firstname.lastname@example.org, for more information or to discuss having your community, business, or destination added to the page free of charge.
Circuit Trail News just in time for
Summer in Camden County!
Things are really heating up in Circuit trail! Three projects reached significant milestones that illustrate the process required to turn an idea into a regionally important piece of infrastructure. Developing a trail project is a lengthy process. It takes a lot of time, energy and commitment from multiple players to move a project from a simple proposal, through the planning and design stages and onto construction. The three projects, covered in this update, illustrate this process and just a few of the entities involved.
As a bit of background, The Circuit is a bold regional initiative, promising the Philadelphia metropolitan area a trail network that would total 800 miles and connect 11 counties in New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Delaware. Philadelphia area residents and visitors will be able to get out of their cars and explore the region’s rivers, greenspaces, neighborhoods and towns up close and personal. The Circuit will serve as the spine of a regional active transportation network, functioning as highways for non-motorized transportation that efficiently connect people to jobs, services, transit, and much more.
First, a long anticipated project, the new pedestrian and bike friendly ramp on the Camden side of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge opened in June 2019. The bridge’s south walkway is now far more bicycle and pedestrian friendly and fully compliant with the American with Disabilities Act, creating a vital off-road link to Philadelphia open to everyone.
The project has its roots way back in 2000, when the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia began working with the Delaware River Port Authority (DRPA), pushing them to embrace the south walkway as one of its top priorities. In 2008, the new ramp was added to DRPA’s five year Capital Improvement program. As we see 11 years later, it took a bit longer than expected, but the Bike Coalition and DRPA were unwavering in their efforts, doing what was necessary to get us to where we are today!
Second, Camden County received a $1.2 million federal Transportation Alternatives Set-Aside grant to construct the Atlantic Avenue Trail in Oaklyn and Haddon Heights, a project that first gained steam almost 20 years ago! The East Atlantic Avenue Bikeway Feasibility Study was completed in 2003. It largely sat on a shelf until Camden County resurrected the idea as part of the 2015 Camden County Bicycle and Multi-Use Trail Plan and the 2017 Cross Camden County Trail Feasibility Plan. These two documents moved the project far enough long to be eligible for grant funding to finalize design and build the trail. The trail should be constructed within the next few years. The Rails to Trail Conservancy was an important partner with Camden County through this process, as was the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission and Conrail.
Third, a recently completed Camden County feasibility study found that converting an abandoned rail bridge over Route 130 into a linkage between two existing Circuit trails in Merchantville and Pennsauken was possible. The Bridge will function as the Route 130 Overpass along the larger Burlington to Camden Trail. The feasibility study findings clears the way to move forward with the further planning and design work required to secure grant funding for construction. This project results from the efforts of the Rails to Trail Conservancy, Camden County, Pennsauken Township and residents living the near the project site. The abandoned bridge has been a frequent site of illegal dumping, creating an eyesore and a safety hazard. Hopefully these residents will not have wait too long for a highlight of the Circuit network to be outside their door!
Stay tuned for more updates on these and other Circuit projects. For more information visit circuittrails.org or contact Cross County Connection at (856) 596-8228.
Morristown's Coffee With A Cop
Residents and visitors alike were invited to join TransOptions and the Morristown Bureau of Police in conversation about pedestrian safety as they picked up their morning coffee at Smartworld Coffee in Morristown. Pedestrian safety information was handed out along with coupons for a free coffee from Smartworld Coffee.
Coffee With A Cop was organized in partnership with the Morristown Bureau of Police as part of TransOptions’ pedestrian safety campaign, Street Smart Morristown. Morristown Public Safety Director, Michael Corcoran, Morris County Prosecutor, Fredric Knapp and officers from the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office and the Morris County Sheriff's Office were in attendance.
Between 2015 and 2017 there were 74 crashes involving pedestrians in Morristown. In 2017, a pedestrian was struck an average of every 15 days in Morristown. 39 percent of pedestrian-involved crashes were attributed to drivers failing to yield to pedestrians. Also, 34 percent of pedestrians struck were in a marked crosswalk at the time of the crash. That’s according to data from the New Jersey Division of Highway Traffic Safety and Rutgers Center for Advanced
Infrastructure and Transportation (CAIT).
Pedestrian safety is an ongoing challenge in New Jersey. To date, TransOptions has led 12 individual campaigns in 8 towns with some municipalities hosting more than one.
RideWise concludes its Annual Drive-Less Somerset Challenge
RideWise recently persuaded individuals living or working in Somerset County to make a commitment to drive less by participating in the agency’s annual Drive Less Somerset Challenge.
Throughout the month of June, participants carpooled, vanpooled, biked, walked, took transit or telecommuted and eliminated 38,355 drive-alone miles and 46,793 cubic feet of CO2. Participants could compete individually or as part of an employer team by taking the pledge to drive less and tracking their trips online. Any travel option that replaced a drive-alone trip, whether for work or recreation, counted.
This year’s individual participants competed for the Grand Challenge prize, a weekend with a Tesla Model 3. Participating worksites competed in the Employer Challenge to be the top employer in Somerset County and be recognized at RideWise’s annual recognition breakfast scheduled in December.
This year’s individual Grand Challenge Champion was Jared Schneider, who eliminated 1,468 drive-alone miles and won the Tesla weekend experience. Eli Lilly & Co. was this year’s Employer Champion, where employees eliminated 7,253 drive alone miles.
To date, the Drive Less Somerset Challenge has reduced over 240,000 drive alone miles and eliminated more than 6,000 vehicle trips. Transportation contributes to nearly half of New Jersey's greenhouse gas emissions and is the largest source of air pollution that impacts community health.
Thank you to all our participants and employer partners for joining us in this year’s challenge to try sustainable modes of travel and drive less.
And thank you to this year’s prize sponsors:
Country Squire Pottery
Kiehl's/Bloomingdales, Bridgewater Commons Mall
Onyx Yoga Studio
Raritan Headwaters Association
Raritan Valley Beekeepers Association
S&G Cleaning Services
Somerset County Park Commission
The Olde Mill Inn & Grain House
Lisa Uchrin, Musconetcong Watercolor Society
Weekly winners, Employer Challenge honorable mentions, and more information on Drive Less Somerset can be viewed on RideWise’s website.
Summer Fun on the
Summer 2019 marks the third year of partnership between Keep Middlesex Moving and Healthier Middlesex. Through this collaboration, KMM’s Safe Routes to School staff works with summer programs by municipal and private camps to promote walking and biking as safe and healthy options to travel to school. On July 25, 2019, Keep Middlesex Moving met with 100 children from the Highland Park Department of Recreation Summer Camp for the Middlesex Greenway Pedestrian Safety Tour.
This activity is designed to encourage children to be aware and alert when crossing streets and intersections, and to provide them with an opportunity to experience Middlesex Greenway. For most campers and staff, this was their first visit to the greenway. During the tour, KMM staff used two intersections to teach children simple rules which will help them remain visible and alert when walking or biking. In consideration of greenway trail users, proper trail etiquette was emphasized to demonstrate how other pedestrians and bicycles can share this space. As Limebike was a prominent feature on the trail, KMM also had the opportunity to explain bikeshare systems as Limebike and its partnership with the Borough of Metuchen.
The Middlesex Greenway is a rails-to-trails project which was purchased by the county in 2002. The path extends 3.5 miles from Greenway Park in Metuchen to Raymond Street in Woodbridge. Over the years, the trail has been outfitted with a 10-foot wide paved path and a covered pedestrian bridge over Route 1 in Edison. The trail is mostly flat and it also has ADA accessible entrances at 8 of the 13 points.
West Windsor Township Announces
Pace Car Safety Campaign
West Windsor Township and Greater Mercer TMA have collaborated on a new safety campaign called the Neighborhood PACE Car Program. The PACE Car Program is a citizen-based campaign that aims to make their community safer for pedestrians, bicyclists, and drivers by reducing vehicle speed. West Windsor Township, West Windsor’s Volunteer Fire Company No. 1, Greater Mercer TMA, and West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance, expressed their support for the campaign.
“This community-led program is about empowering people to take charge of their neighborhoods and to impress on our friends and neighbors the importance of observing the speed limits and obeying the traffic laws on our streets,” said Mayor Hemant Marathe.
Residents will be able to register as a pace car driver, sign a pledge to drive the speed limit, stop for pedestrians in marked crosswalks, yield to pedestrians in unmarked crosswalks at intersections, share the road with pedestrians and bicyclists of all ages and abilities, eliminate texting and phone use while driving, display the Pace car magnet on their car, and encourage others to take the pledge. The Pace car magnet communicates the intention to drive the speed limit to other drivers and helps slow down the traffic.
“Speeding on Township roads is cited by West Windsor residents as one of their top concerns’,” said Michael Stevens, Fire Police Captain for the West Windsor Volunteer Fire Company No. 1. “Nationally, speeding takes a heavy toll. In 2017, it was a contributing factor in 26% of the nation’s fatal accidents, wrecks that killed 9,717 people, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Studies have shown that more than 20% of those accidents occurred where posted speed limits were 35 mph or less. “
“Even modestly higher speeds can spell the difference between life and death for a cyclist or pedestrian struck by a vehicle,” according to Michael Ruderman of the West Windsor Bicycle and Pedestrian Alliance. “The force of impact on a human body is one-third greater at 35 mph than at 30 mph.”
“Pace cars calm traffic throughout a neighborhood,” added Cheryl Kastrenakes, Executive Director at Greater Mercer TMA. “The greater the participation by residents the better it will work.”
West Windsor residents can pick up pledge forms and car magnets from the following locations: West Windsor Branch Library, West Windsor Farmer’s Market, and West Windsor Township Municipal Offices. An online pledge is available at https://www.westwindsornj.org/.