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PRO BIKE® PRO WALK FLORIDA CONFERENCE

The Dollars and Sense of Bicycling and Walking

Thanks to everyone who attended, volunteered, sponsored, or otherwise supported FBA’s 2010 ProBike/ProWalk Florida Conference.  Especially appreciated are The City of Lakeland and Polk County Tourism and Sports Marketing.

As expected, we were treated to excellent keynotes from Bob Chauncey and Kevin Mills; diverse offerings from a variety of presenters; and mobile sessions that gave attendees a chance to learn about Lakeland’s bike/ped environment and projects from those who know it well.  Of course, local-led bike rides, gatherings at downtown restaurants and pubs, and many other opportunities to meet new and old friends and colleagues were all part of the three-day event.

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As good as our hosts, supporters, volunteers, and the venues were, attendance was much less than hoped for, as was sponsorship income. We understand and expected that economic conditions was no doubt a major factor for the low turnout and financial support, but we felt our central location, the reasonable registration fees and lodging price, and the session, keynote, and other conference offerings, would have attracted many more attendees.  That being the case FBA’s board will be considering whether or not PBPWFL will continue to take place in the future.

Even if you didn’t attend this year’s ProBike/ProWalk Florida conference we welcome your input.  Please contact me at dan@floridabicycle.org or 239-334-6417 with your comments and suggestions. 

The fifth ProBike®/ProWalk Florida Conference "The Dollars and Sense of Bicycling and Walking" brought to you by the Florida Bicycle Association. The conference was held May 11-13, 2010 at The Lakeland Center, Lakeland FL.

This conference is for anyone who wants to make their community healthier, safer, better functioning and more alive with people. With 22 sessions that include over 30 presentations, two expert keynote speakers, and a variety of workshops, mobile sessions, and other interesting activities, ProBike/ProWalk Florida 2010 promises to be a conference you’re sure to find very valuable.  For professional planners, AICP credit will be available for many of the sessions.

Kevin Mills, the Vice President of the Policy Program for Rails-to-Trails Conservancy, will speak about efforts to double investment in our country’s bike/pedestrian infrastructure, among other work he and RTC is doing.  Kevin’s expertise in policy matters and familiarity with federal and state workings will undoubtedly make for an insightful presentation.  

Bob Chauncey, a dynamic and entertaining speaker, will share his insight into the economics of bicycling and walking, something he’s been focused on for several years.  Prior to his current roles as bike/pedestrian advocacy consultant and college professor, Bob was the Senior Program Manager for the National Center for Bicycling and Walking, where he spearheaded efforts such as the Walkable Communities Workshops program and various Safe Routes to School initiatives. Bob also co-authored publications that are valuable resources to both bike/pedestrian professionals and advocates.  

Dan Connaughton, Program Director of the Florida Traffic and Bicycle Safety Education Program and Preston Tyree, Education Director of the League of American Bicyclists will lead a half-day workshop for League Cycling Instructors, Regional Trainers, and anyone involved in bike/pedestrian education.  We hope this first-time undertaking will be part of ProBike/ProWalk Florida every year.
Local government representatives and consultants will lead our mobile workshops, which includes a tour of beautiful Hollis Gardens, one of Lakeland’s signature landmarks.  Other mobile sessions will cover a road diet example, downtown redevelopment, rail-trails, and an all-inclusive public park.

As part of our opening day activities, state and national organization leaders will provide updates on the work they are doing as well as insight into how important legislation and other policy matters are impacting bicycling and walking.  Florida Bicycle Association’s annual awards will also be presented. 

The future of Florida depends on improving community planning, protecting public health, safety and the environment. This conference will bring people together who can promote change to achieve this goal.