The Norman Transcript

Government

May 12, 2013

Bike to Work Day encourages commuting without polluting

NORMAN — Most days University of Oklahoma professor Scott Williams rides his bike to work from his home on Lahoma Avenue to Gould Hall where he teaches classes in architecture. It’s a short commute of less than a mile and riding a bicycle is faster than driving a car and looking for a parking space.

Still, Williams said he is often surprised how many colleagues will drive their cars similar distances.

“America’s grown up with the car,” Williams said. “In Germany, the car came much later.”

Williams lived in Germany for 23 years before moving to Oklahoma. His dad was in the military and he attended high school and college in the American school system in Germany. The cultural attitude toward pedestrians and cyclists is very different in Germany, he said.

“People love cars — Germans make BMWs, Porches, VWs, Mercedes and Audies, but they want their cities to be livable,” he said. “They have excellent public transportation everywhere.”

Williams said German drivers are very conscious of watching out for pedestrians and cyclists whenever they make a turn.

“It’s automatic for them, like putting on a seatbelt,” he said. “They have bicycle paths all over. They have definite bicycle rules — they’re a lot more stringent than here. The Germans want their children to be able to ride their bicycles safely in the streets.”

In addition to bike lanes on the roadways, the Germans have some wider sidewalks with special lanes marked for bikes where the roads are too busy for cyclists to be safe.

“They try to fit the solution to the context,” he said.

While Williams has found cycling to be more hazardous during the 12 years he’s lived in Oklahoma, he’s committed to it.

“We consciously chose to live in town,” he said. “We wanted to live close to work.”

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Government
  • Oklahoma Water Resources Board grants Norman low-interest loan for facility upgrade

    Norman has been authorized for a $50.3 million loan from the Oklahoma Water Resources Board to fund Phase 2 of the Norman Water Reclamation Facility upgrade. “It’s the single largest loan OWRB has made,” Norman Mayor Cindy Rosenthal said. ...

    April 17, 2014

  • General fund continues to decline as expenses exceed anticipated revenues

    Norman’s expenses will again outstrip projected revenue in the current budget before the city council. The budget for the fiscal year that starts in July and ends June 30, 2015, projects $210,982,020 in total revenues and $213,436,778 in ...

    April 16, 2014

  • County hears presentation on employment opportunities

    The Cleveland County Board of Commissioners listened to a presentation Monday to consider partnering with a nonprofit that provides employment opportunities for prison inmates re-entering the community. Patrick Viklund, Center for ...

    April 15, 2014

  • Drilling operation shows policy gap

    While Norman residents are being encouraged to use rain barrels, a Texas oil and gas company is pumping thousands of gallons of treated drinking water into the ground. The Oklahoma Corporation Commission controls permits for drilling, ...

    April 12, 2014

  • Filings finished

    In addition to Ward 2 Norman City Council candidates Clint Williams and Aliesha Karjala several federal, state and county officials will be on the June 24 ballots. Filing for offices that serve Cleveland County residents are: · ...

    April 12, 2014

  • Fracking review online

    The Oklahoma Hydraulic Fracturing State Review is available on the Corporation Commission’s website, occeweb.com. Completed in 2011 by a non-profit, multi-stakeholder organization, State Review of Oil and Natural Gas Environmental ...

    April 12, 2014

  • Candidates file for state and federal positions Thursday

    New filings on Thursday include: ; ...

    April 11, 2014

  • City briefs

    Egg hunt today  Norman’s Easter Egg Hunt will be today at Andrews Park. Activities — including moon bounces, games, giveaways and Easter Bunny photos (bring your own camera) — will start at 5:30 p.m....

    April 11, 2014

  • Norman residents among those seeking to run for county, state offices in first day of filing

    Filing for county and state offices started Wednesday and continues from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. today and Friday. A handful of Democrats and a trickle of Independents vye with a field heavy-laden with Republican candidates. There are few ...

    April 10, 2014

  • Fallin seeks aid for businesses affected by closure of memorial bridge

    Purcell business owner Greg Lucy wrote to the governor this week. Lucy owns Purcell Farm and Ranch Supply, a business that depends heavily on trade from Lexington and surrounding areas. The recent closure of the James C. Nance Memorial ...

    April 10, 2014

Video
Facebook