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They only want safe places to ride

Bicycle Tour Network comes to town

A national conference dedicated to expanding bicycle tourism throughout the country kicked off in San Diego on Wednesday (November 4). It’s the second year in a row the Bicycle Tour Network brought its flagship event to town.

"We launched the conference with a bike ride, obviously the best way you could think of doing it to start things off on the right foot...or the right pedal, so to speak," said Andy Hanshaw, executive director of the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, who led a small group around Mission Bay on Decobikes from the city's recently implemented bike-share program that places bikes available for short-term rentals across 180 locations within the city.

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"We're here to talk about the economic impact of bicycling in cities across the country — how bike tourism is really growing," Hanshaw continued. "San Diego is really becoming more and more of a destination for travel by bike, and we're glad to showcase that this week.

"What we need [to attract tourism dollars] is infrastructure safer places for people to ride. So we want to create more and safer bike lanes, do outreach in the community regarding safety and awareness, and even encourage locals to get on their bikes more often. Overall, we're making good progress on making it safer for people to bike, and by doing that we get more people to bike."

According to Hanshaw, specific numbers regarding the economic impact of cyclists drawn to San Diego for vacations are unavailable (the city has been frequented by the conference in multiple years due to its hospitable fall weather), but he said it was a metric that should be tracked by SANDAG or San Diego's Tourism Marketing District.

The conference itself draws about 250 attendees, who remain in town through Saturday. While the location is expected to move next year, Hanshaw believes the group will return to San Diego.

"I hope we'll continue to be in the rotation. They like us here."

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A national conference dedicated to expanding bicycle tourism throughout the country kicked off in San Diego on Wednesday (November 4). It’s the second year in a row the Bicycle Tour Network brought its flagship event to town.

"We launched the conference with a bike ride, obviously the best way you could think of doing it to start things off on the right foot...or the right pedal, so to speak," said Andy Hanshaw, executive director of the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, who led a small group around Mission Bay on Decobikes from the city's recently implemented bike-share program that places bikes available for short-term rentals across 180 locations within the city.

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"We're here to talk about the economic impact of bicycling in cities across the country — how bike tourism is really growing," Hanshaw continued. "San Diego is really becoming more and more of a destination for travel by bike, and we're glad to showcase that this week.

"What we need [to attract tourism dollars] is infrastructure safer places for people to ride. So we want to create more and safer bike lanes, do outreach in the community regarding safety and awareness, and even encourage locals to get on their bikes more often. Overall, we're making good progress on making it safer for people to bike, and by doing that we get more people to bike."

According to Hanshaw, specific numbers regarding the economic impact of cyclists drawn to San Diego for vacations are unavailable (the city has been frequented by the conference in multiple years due to its hospitable fall weather), but he said it was a metric that should be tracked by SANDAG or San Diego's Tourism Marketing District.

The conference itself draws about 250 attendees, who remain in town through Saturday. While the location is expected to move next year, Hanshaw believes the group will return to San Diego.

"I hope we'll continue to be in the rotation. They like us here."

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The latest copy of the Reader

Please enjoy this clickable Reader flipbook. Linked text and ads are flash-highlighted in blue for your convenience. To enhance your viewing, please open full screen mode by clicking the icon on the far right of the black flipbook toolbar.

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