Making Bicycle Ambassador A Real Job

Matt Seaton argues that "after significant investment in cycling infrastructure, biking needs better PR." Would a bike ambassador make the difference?

Still a relatively new concept, only a handful of U.S. cities employ a "cycling diplomat." While bicycle ambassadors do exist in San Francisco, Washington D.C., Chicago, and NYC, they are tied in one way or another to either the local government or bike advocacy groups. Portland's 21 Ambassadors is different in that it is a product from the private sector, namely the 21st Avenue Bicycles.

But what exactly does the job entail? As the title implies, those who partake the role of bike ambassadors are "model cyclists," willing and able to offer assistance to fellow cyclists in need.

Seaton elaborates, "The ambassadors not only encourage cyclists to have a more constructive attitude to shared space, but also defang the criticism with their proactive approach. It's savvy and virtuous at the same time."

In NYC, a team of 12 ambassadors is responsible for "staffing routes and intersections used by commuters, talking to cyclists, raising consciousness; also partnering with local businesses, providing stopping points and refreshments for commuters; and joining police precincts, doing work educating cyclists while the NYPD talks to drivers," he adds.

Full Story: How to become a cycling 'ambassador'
Tags: 

Comments

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $199
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $14.95 a month
Book cover of the Guide to Graduate Planning Programs 2012

Thinking about Grad School?

You need the essential resource for prospective planning students
Starting at $24.95
poster

A Short History of America

From comic book artist Robert Crumb, poster shows how the built environment has changed throughout the decades.
$14.95