Duluth Bikes Board Meeting

Meeting Minutes | Toasty’s

1.5.17 • 5:30pm

Present Board Members: Mariana Glitsos, Michael Latsch, Tara Sieve, Shawna Mullen, Morris Levy, Ruurd Schoolderman, Mike Casey, Jenny VanSickle,

Board Members Absent: Dick Haney, Alyssa Lommel, Jon Loye,

Guest Participants: Richard Arey (St. Paul Classic founder)


Additions to Agenda:  none

Meeting called to order at 5:33pm

Addition: Michael-discuss shift Two Wheel Deals to be member benefit than community benefit

Review 9.8.16 Meeting Minutes:  Approved

Guest Speaker: MIC Bike Plan (James Gittemeier)

  • Bikeway plan has not been updated since 1999. Started the development of Connecting Duluth Report and identify bike routes. There was always an intent to do an update in 2014, however it has been delayed. MIC has an active transportation plan for Duluth and Superior. They determined that it needed to be done by 2016, however it was rushed there are questions unresolved. The plan was designed for the highest level of commuter cycling competency and fastest route.
  • The draft is going in front of the board members at the end of this month and will progress to another board, then the public, and finally approval in April.
  • James does not feel like the bikeways plan is not right for this time. It does not include the cross-city trail and only focuses on on-street system. Recommendations are to include removing stop signs on routes.
  • Missing pieces also include downtown routes.
  • If a group would like to get together to meet and go through the plan-after it goes out to the boards-and then members from Duluth Bikes can review/discuss.
  • If you are going to apply for federal funds, now, a plan must be provided.
  • The county board is the influencing group for these plans.
    • Ruurd: As a board, we’ll show up and give our input. How can we use this process to reach out to others who may not be a part of this?
    • James: If you know people who would be interested and would be willing to work closely on this with me, please invite them. If a group does not show and point out to the board that they need to stop and address these issues, they will push forward without hesitation. Cindy Voigt takes this very seriously.
    • Ruurd: This is a real opportunity to present this as a goal and as a process to bring our community to a higher level of bicycle friendly community (BFC) How can we use this information to present it that way?
    • James: This update will include engineering updates, but also the other E’s (education, etc) That would lengthen and provide a full conversation to the bikeways plan. It goes to the engineers board, policy boards…
    • Ruurd: That would be a good activity for us (Duluth Bikes) to have something to present to them.
    • Shawna: It sounds like your recommendation would be for Duluth Bikes and others have more of an influence on the initial presentation sooner by have once a week meet-up.
    • Ruurd: Should we include Dan Hartman since he was a part of the initial conversation and he has an influence on their perspective. How do we go about getting together?
    • James: What I need your help identifying who should be contributing to this-churches, schools, destinations, businesses. This current plan does not include bike racks, off-curb ramps, entrances to buildings (covered)… the process will be a survey to provide input of where we are at today and the survey will assist with the priorities of the steps. Any one of the routes on the current Bikeway System could have a line (route) taken off.
    • Mike: We have to emphasize that it’s not just about bikes, but it’s about wheels–wheelchairs, strollers, scooters.
    • Mariana: Anyone in this group, possibly Advocacy Com. would like to be involved?
  • Transportation Advisory Committee (TAC) meeting: January 17th
    • Action: Ruurd and Advocacy Com will meet in the next two weeks and determine who will be more involved and recommend to be involved.

1: Officer Updates/Reports

  • Mariana: 21 members in Duluth Bikes out of BikeMN-will ask for the to breakdown of memerships (household to individual) Two Wheel Deals transferred over from the Y to Duluth Bikes
  • Treasurer: (Mariana’s best guess) ~$700.00 after Give to the Max Day


2: Committee Updates


  • Outreach:


    • Michael: As a public benefit, it’s hard to get the Two Wheel Deal program, but it may be easier to manage and an incentive to encourage member registration and benefits.
      • Could Grandfather in those with the sticker already?
      • Those with a BikeMN card would receive the benefits?
      • Mike: I could include a free train ticket or bogo ticket
      • Ruurd: I like the idea of a tangible benefit. Do you think that businesses would feel like they are losing a percentage of their market?
      • Tara: I don’t think they would because it has been in limbo for a while and hasn’t had much of a spotlight on it. It’s a little-known secret.
      • Outreach will meet after this and discuss more.
  • Advocacy:
    • We met with Emily Larson to introduce Duluth Bikes as a formal chapter. Presented our strategic plan and overall objectives (silver and gold). That really took some traction with her hearing these goals and something she could do something with (BFC framework). That we’re not just a Superior Street goal, but that we see a big picture. She requested a lot of data on similar sized cities and their data. She suggested connecting with Beth Olson who would be a good partner and ally.
    • Jen: I reached out to Elissa to reschedule…haven’t heard back
    • Ruurd met with Duncan, City Engineer, on the variance for Superior Street. Followed up with MNDot committee and complained about the variance–understood but nothing they could do. In the variance, it states for having the annual parking, parking and maximizing parking was vital to the overall success of the health of downtown. It’s still not available publicly.
    • How can we proceed with making this public and sharing this concern with the community… it’s about public trust.
      • Mike: How much do they really want for public input? They want business input and stakeholder input. It’s an assumption that they want the “public” input. They are treating it like a formality, not a variable. There’s a parking committee and a parking commission… We have to encourage Emily with facts and information, she doesn’t mind hearing from us and needs to hear.
      • Jen: We have to build membership to mobilize. If we created a template for people to write in and call.

Action: Advocacy committee to generate a script for community members to address the process (not so much Superior Street, but the process) and how will they change it.

  • Events:
    • DRAFT Jan 26 at Blacklist. We have our 4 speakers. Mariana has a meeting with Tim Bates to discuss the ZAP Program (health incentive program that scans you as you go by on your bike… days on bike=points=reduction in healthcare cost).

Action: Ruurd host Patrick while in town.

    • Winter Bike to Work Day: Friday, February 10th… no definite plans yet. MIC used to be the lead but would like to partner with it. Last two years we had coffee and at MN Power Plaza. On the Winter Bike to Work Day, it was posted on their website and Healthy Duluth. Other suggestions: community ride to a destination with coffee/cocoa (Mike & Jen?)

Action: James (MIC) will make connection for us to have free coffee for Winter Bike to Work Day. Will also assist with getting a public space for free (just ask).

Action: Mike will discuss DTA to offer free rides for bicyclists


3: Superior Street Updates & Next Steps


4: People For Bike Contract (Draft Contract)

    • Will provide us $1000. Needs approval because Mariana will be moving to Minneapolis in August. If we don’t meet the 4 required DRAFTs in 2017, we’d have to pay back a prorated amount back.


  • Action: Mariana sign and send People for Bikes DRAFT Contract.



5: Zagster Bike Share Program

  • Shawna: this program needs a group to do all the sponsorship outreach ahead of time and no administrative work after that. Each bike is $1800/year. If we were ask one business to host one bike station, that equals $9000. Zeitgeist could take this on, but if that doesn’t progress Duluth Bike OR Duluth Bikes can just take it over now.
  • It’s marketing focused for the sponsors and has data for how much exposure they have.
  • They have this program in Edina and 60 programs throughout the country. If it doesn’t work, it’s just for one year.
  • It can be 5 bike stations (5 bikes for each station).
  • We’d get to keep the user’s fees from the use of it.
  • Ruurd: I think that’s a little much for the board to take this on…I like the idea of having a focus on the downtown and Canal Park. What number of bikes would be a minimum starting goal?
  • Shawna: 6 or 7 stations (30 bikes) $60,000… I don’t think they have a minimum.

Action: Shawna to ask what the minimum number of stations and bikes needed for


    • They focus not just on transportation, but recreation.
    • Shawna: The city is supportive of it, but doesn’t have staff time or support it. It can be left out year-round and they subcontract with mechanics in the community to maintain it. For example, if we wanted launch it this spring, we’d need to have sponsors by February.


  • Action: Shawna to come back with more ideas on how Duluth Bikes can support this initiative.



9: Other

  • Table Discussion: Duluth Bikes partnership with DTA (Mike)
  • Mike: University of Minnesota has a GIS Program does free mapping for nonprofits. You can also look at the Cross-city trail to see the story map that was created.


Meeting Adjourned: 7:10pm

Next meeting: 2.2.17 | 5:30pm| Toasty’s on Superior St.