Critical Mass

Critical Mass San Fransisco April 29, 2005 (image via Wikipedia)

There will be a meeting of cyclists Friday July 27, 2012 at the Legislative Building for a critical mass bike ride.  The group plans to leave at 4:30pm, heading north up Albert Street to downtown Regina.  The ride will end at Victoria Park.

Here is a link to Wikipedia’s Critical Mass page for more information.

The people organizing this ride are new to critical mass and would appreciate feedback, experiences and suggestions on how to best hold a fun mass bike ride every month.

Looking through the Wikipedia page and reflecting on my own cycling experiences, I wonder if some traditional aspects of Critical Mass, like ignoring traffic laws, may do more harm than good? Cyclist-motorist conflicts here in the city can be quite acute.  I hope to hear from people who participated in critical mass events in Regina in the past in order to avoid repeating mistakes.

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Critical Mass

5 thoughts on “Critical Mass

  1. Jim Elliott says:

    Past critical mass rides in Regina have usually had their start and end point in Victoria Park and have circled in downtown Regina. It is best to have them the same day each month, say the last Friday of the month. You will get harassed by the police if you do not maintain decorum or break laws. We even got questioned when we weren’t in the right lane even though we thought the lane we were in was the safest.

  2. At 4:30 it’s a tad too early for me to ever join in the ride. It would have to be 5:15 to have a chance of making it.

    I’d advise making sure, by announcing prior to taking off, that everyone knows to obey traffic signs and ride in the correct lane for through traffic.

  3. Chris says:

    Critical mass has two meanings to me. Before I knew its origin I thought it meant the certain number of people needed to participate in something to which a tipping point occurs and it becomes widely accepted and embraced by the general public. The other meaning is its origin from China (amongst other places in the world) that demonstrates the flow of traffic at uncontrolled intersections. Uncontrolled intersections is the key word here. If we want to live in a city where cars, bikes, and pedestrians can safely and peacefully co-exsist then we need to abide by traffic lights in this ride. I also believe we should take up one lane to ourselves, leave one lane for cars to drive by us and check us out and leave the sidewalks to the pedestrians who can also observe us.
    I also feel the current ride is both to short to enjoy as well as too short for maximum exposure. I would suggest a longer ride that hits all the major arteries that both cyclist as well as drivers both like to use (Albert, Broad, Victoria, etc). As far as keeping together as a group through traffic lights, the bikers who make it through a light can stop to wait for the others if they wish too. Yes we would be stopped in the middle of the lane. The point of the excercise is that we want one lane to ourselves so that we can ride in safety and cars can have their lane with no bikes to slow or block them.

  4. Chris says:

    We should also invite the city police to bike with us to create a safe atmosphere in hopes that encourages other people to come out and bike. If troubles brews from either bikers or drivers we can nip it in the butt before it becomes an issue and sours the event. I would also feel more comfortable bringing out my 3 year old son while driving down a lane if a cop was biking with me.
    One last thing the city wants to encourage more citizens to commute by bike and they know it has to be done on the streets, safely, not the sidewalks. My point is taking a lane for bikers should not be an issue for the city, because where else are we going to ride safely?

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