savekeywest .com

key west citizen's voice

By

about a non lethal speed

while riding our bikes down the to narrow bike lane on fleming st multiple vehicles wizzing by us my friend sue said to me “why do people drive fast enough to hurt other people ?”

By

Daddy I’m “car sick”

When i ride my bike on key west streets I feel like the child forced to endure a chain smoking parents second hand smoke. Your vehicle’s carburetor is sucking in the public’s air supply and spewing it back out laden with toxic compounds no different than pumping raw sewage overboard your second hand exhaust is polluting the air we all breath, if the tailpipe on your car or scooter was in the front would you be driving it? Just like the growing awareness of the harmful side effects of second hand cigarette smoke  we need to stand up against the dangers of internal combustion engines  if you run your tail pipe into your car and roll up the windows you’ll be dead in a few  minutes, a pack a day habit may take 50 years to kill you,  here’s  a few of the airborne pollutants gasoline and diesel  engines are  leaving in their wake, Carbon monoxide, Black carbon, Nitrogen dioxide, Sulphur dioxide, Benzene, Formaldehyde, Polycyclic hydrocarbons, and of course  Lead!   The latest studies done on congested urban areas like Key West link these toxic emissions with  cancer, heart disease, birth defects and permanent memory loss
Key West’s  addiction to a car based transportation system and it’s disdain for bicycles and other modes of travel needs to be  re-evaluated . The city should promoting the use  of non-polluting low-impact vehicles. Like quitting the habit its time to realize internal combustion engines are devastating to our own health and  others that share the roadway, and  not to mention the planet
rickeith

By

F.L.O.A.T.

This historic house on James st was approved for the new pilot program F.L.O.A.T an experimental initiative by H.A.R.C and BofA  and FEMA . The plan is to raise your house up to the level that the sea will be at when your mortgage is paid of so you can retire and float away into the sunset

By

A non lethal speed

We do it for our school children ,why not everyone ? aren’t all are lives just as important ? Are we really in that big a hurry on our 2×4 island that we need to be endangering the lives of pedestrians and bicyclists . I ask all our drivers to try slowing down to 15 or 20 , roll down your window smell the frangepani and enjoy the ride your in paradise

By

EXCUSE ME ..YOUR CAR IS PARKED IN OUR BIKE LANE!

EXCUSE ME ..YOUR CAR IS PARKED IN OUR BIKE LANE!

Our City streets are a public right of way owned by all the people, to give preference to one group is to deprive the other of its rights too fair use, presently half of our  roadway is “dead-space” taken for the storage of personal private property (parking), in what rightfully should be a lane for slower moving traffic, this practice  has resulted in many years of injury and loss of life. With metered parking the city is profiting by it ! Written in the Key West City’s own codes Sec. 62-2. Obstructions. (a) It shall be unlawful for any person willfully to obstruct any public right-of-way, street, roadway, by impeding, or restraining the passage of either pedestrian or vehicular traffic or by endangering the safe movement of pedestrians or vehicles traveling thereon. Just as the awareness to the hazards of public smoking we need to stop putting the perks of the auto owners ahead of the safety of our citizens and visitors. When asked about removing a few spots on Eaton to “finish the bike path” a City Commissioner said “i don’t want to be the one to tell the them they can’t park there” I wonder if he would rather be telling the family of the next victim he’s sorry but accommodating cars storage is more important than their lives! The”new” Flagler ave with no lane for bikes is another example of this “expired mind set”. For too long our precious bodies have been squeezed between heavy metal and pressed into danger, excuse me your parked car is killing me!  With the fuel crisis and new green movement pushing for alternative means of transportation we need to take back the “Public Right of Way” for its original intended service lets get the stored cars out of the way and make room for the new human powered movement ! Key West should be passionately promoting the use of low impact human powered transportation vehicles that are part of the solution such as walkers,bicycles, skateboards, roller blades, human-electric – hybrids etc..

rick keith   rickeith.com

By

KEY WEST TRAFFIC STUDY (FREE OF CHARGE)

KEY WEST TRAFFIC STUDY (FREE OF CHARGE)
We have done our own traffic study and determined the following: With approximately half of the available roadway used for vehicle storage, our streets are dangerously incapable of supporting a safe environment for the demands put on them. Just like the ban on smoking for the health and safety of our citizens, its time we realize the same thing has been going on with the automobile we have been putting the convenience of the auto owners ahead of the safety of the general population by letting them store their cars in what rightfully should be a lane for slower moving traffic, instead we have been endangering our visitors and citizens, putting them in harms way which has already resulted in injury and loss of life. And with metered parking the city is profiting by it ! We are not attorneys but we did sleep at the Key West Holiday Inn Express parking lot last night, and it would be in our judgement that the any municipality that puts it residents and visitors in harms way is ultimately liable. Written in the Key West City’s own codes Sec. 62-2. Obstructions. (a) It shall be unlawful for any person willfully to obstruct the free, convenient and ordinary use of any public right-of-way, street, roadway, alley, or sidewalk, by impeding, hindering, stifling, retarding or restraining the passage of either pedestrian or vehicular traffic or by endangering the safe movement of pedestrians or vehicles traveling thereon. Excuse me…Your car is parked in our bike lane ! And also a new state law (Florida statute §316.083) has recently gone into effect that requires a 3-foot horizontal buffer zone between bicycles and passing cars. When asked about removing a few spots on Eaton to “finish the bike path” a City Commissioner said “i don’t want to be the one to tell the residents they can’t park in front of their own homes” i wonder if he would rather be telling the family of the next victim he’s sorry but our cars are more important than their lives!
LESS CAN BE MORE EXPONENTIALLY- Most businesses and residences have their own parking there is plenty of off-street parking available and in old town we can adapt, smokers did! The parked cars are a blight on the landscape of our beautiful historic district how quaint are the old photos of key west before the automobile, what will the photos say of us in a hundred years ? How much carbon is spewing out in our air when we drive around looking for that free or closer spot? not to mention the oils dripping out on the pavement only to be washed into the waters every time it rains killing whats left of the reef. Limited on street parking in old town means less traffic congestion, resulting in safer quieter friendly laid back streets which will attract more bicycles and other alternative vehicles. If we put a speed limit of 15 mph we could go back to stop signs or more passive speed bumps at all intersections how many millions of dollars will we save getting rid of the obtrusive traffic lights. We can turn our streets back to there historically intended use to provide safe mobility of the people ! The pluses out weigh the minuses by far if you open your mind to it just like quitting smoking.
THANK YOU FOR NOT SMOKING- Key West should be passionately promoting the use of non-polluting vehicles such as bicycles, skateboards,roller blades, electric cars etc.. create local jobs through the rental, sales, repair, and development of new modes of public and private transportation, Lets take advantage of our flat sunny island and build an urban environment that all other cities will envy attracting the new breed of green tourists. And to our City Commission please don’t stifle a greener key west by limiting alternative transportation with a moratorium to stop sales or rentals of low impact transportation vehicles who are part of the solution not the cause .
Our free study recommendations:
1# Enforce rule 62-2. disallow storage of vehicles in public right-of-ways that can’t support safe passage of all users.
2# Place limits on tour vehicles that congest and endanger our roadways for profit.
3# Slow traffic down to safer pace and reduce traffic control spending.
4# Incentives for our visitors to rent or ride non polluting vehicles more applicable to our 2×4 mi island.
5#give property tax credits to vacant lot owners to develop affordable parking for residents

As John Lennon might have wrote if he were on the island …
Imagine there’s no on-street parking
It’s not that hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no pollution too
Imagine all the people
riding the streets in peace…
You may say I’m a dreamer
I hope I’m not the only one
I hope some way you’ll join us
And Key West will be a greener one
rickeith.com keywest

By

Should the city of Key West ban bicycles?

***THIS ARTICLE IS SATIRE***

We at Save Key West decided to investigate the frazzled state of our Key West streets and are exploring the question, should the city temporarily ban bicycles? The following is our report.

According to un-named city officials, our streets have become overcrowded to the point that something has to give. A new state law (Florida statute §316.083) has recently gone into effect that requires a 3-foot horizontal buffer zone between bikes and cars. It is common knowledge that Key West’s streets are quite narrow and that the roadway is partially used for parking (storage) … which leaves a very limited area for a car or large truck to safely maneuver. This results in a hazardous situation with bicyclists.

“There just isn’t any room left for them! We don’t want to endanger the lives our citizens and visitors, un-documented or legal! We’re opening our selves up for a fatality or even worse a really big and expensive lawsuit” the city says.

County tax revenue office reports a negative contribution by bicyclists,”They put a lot of strain on our local services, automobiles pay a lot of road use tax so deserve more space.” A recent survey estimated 20,000 bicyclists in Key West. “We have been looking into program where everyone can turn in their bike to be recycled and we give them a gas station gift card equal to the scrap value … If they all buy new cars, the fees from tax, tags, titles, fuel tax and parking fees would generate at least $6.5 million into city coffers … which would get the city out of debt by 2016.”

The city transportation department explains, “The average old town street is 32 ft wide. 1 parked car on each side equals 7+7=14 ft and 2 moving vehicles 7+7+=14 allowing 6 inch clearance for side view mirrors = 31 ft leaving only 1 ft for a bicyclists, less than the 3ft minimum ‘safe distance’ for passing a cyclist and when the passing vehicle is large, towing a boat or trailer or tour train/ trolley tour bus, or traveling at much higher speed, greater lateral clearance is needed ‘their lack of ability to interface with larger vehicles may result in property damage and possible loss of life.’” With the new 3 ft minimum buffer zone, the bike lanes on Fleming and Southard are now insufficient, “We probably have to take the paths out or we could be liable.” It is not like the city hasn’t tried, they have been working on the North Roosevelt bike path for over 20 years now and have given up considerable city revenue removing parking meters in over 10 parking spots to place in bike racks.

According to code enforcement, Key West business are required to provide adequate parking for their customers, but you have to actually be shopping there. Most old town residences converted their driveways into pools or garage apartments years ago. If we mess with parking, we will upset a lot of tourists, car campers, and multiple vehicle families, seasonal residents and year rounders too.” They do admit though that there would be less traffic, air and water pollution if there was no need to drive around and around looking for free spot to store your car

We took to the streets to find out what the locals thought of the idea of a ban.

– Bill, a construction manager from South Carolina wondered , “A 3-foot horizontal buffer zone ? My military edition hummer has a 3ft vertical clearance as well so bikes aren’t a problem for me.”

- Dayna, a local artist says, “Banning bikes! What a great idea! When I whiz by those bikes in my BMW convertible, my dogs just go crazy for those shiny spinning wheels. I worry they will get hurt jumping out at such high speed.”

- Theo, a local coffee shop owner said, “Look at that bike rack out front of my store taking up a perfectly good parking space. I could put another red hummer in there!”

- Svetlana, a new winter resident asks, “Is it really necessary to clutter the road with those things? They have spinning classes at the gym were they can do it out of the way.”

- We have to agree with Tom, a local food and beverage manager when he notes “It is always them cyclists complaining about pollution and stuff … why if they got a truck with windows and A/C like real people, they wouldn’t whine about it.”

- We talked with the islands new go-green initiative “People think bikes are clean, but in fact peddling reduces our islands oxygen and creates Co2 and other deadly gasses. Their carbon foot print is more pronounced on a 4 sq mile island”.

- Steve, a visitor from Norway, Maine “It is simple man, it’s the rule of tonnage out there! If you can’t get it up to speed, something’s gonna give and it ain’t gonna be my F350 turbo diesel.

- Just talk to Juan, county beach resident “After colliding with a Cadillac Escalade the other day, I spent 3 hours buffing it out by hand. Luckily it was only my leg that was fractured.

We also hear comments such as “All these bikes make Key West look like a 3rd world country.” and “I thought bikes were for kids till I moved here.”

- Dane, a stock island live-aboard believes that it is time to give up his bike. “It is dangerous out their man. I feel safer on the bus.”

- Captain Allen, a local boat builder quips “I like my bike, its red.”

- Dave, a NYC city engineer says, “I think the money Key West spends on bike racks would be better put to the feasibility of a public awareness campaign to promote my O.O.P.S. (optional ocean current powered subway system).

- On a brighter note, Kimmie of the Key West Bike Club is talking to some insurance companies about providing a group plan for liability and collision coverage for Key West bicyclists. It will only work if the city will make it mandatory for all riders, enforced by yearly bike registration and operator licenses and inspections. Prices are coming in at $700 per year per adult, $500 per child (PIP not available though).

The city also generates 39% of its revenue from parking meter collections, broken meter and overtime fines in what could be a bike lane. “If they can come up with $ 5.2 million per year, we could open the lane up for the bikes, but not until 2021 when the city’s contract with its new computerized metering system expires.” In any case, the ban would only be “temporary … until people stop using cars,” the city said.

Note, this article is satire. We wrote it to bring awareness to the fact that we’ve always had a safe lane for all human powered transport joggers,speed walkers, roller bladers,bicycles, etc… but our cars are parked in it.

as John Lennon might have said if here were on the island …

Imagine there’s no on-street parking
It’s not that hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no pollution too
Imagine all the people

riding the streets in peace…
You may say I’m a dreamer
I hope I’m not the only one
I hope some way you’ll join us
And Key West will be a greener one

Sincerely,
rickeith steveking
savekeywest.com

By

wyland walls

i think someone should repaint the waterfront market wyland mural with a scene that more depicts the actual state of the reef off key west, these wyland walls give us a false sense of reality based on a happy feel-good security blanket with a pretty picture when in fact the environment is dying and all that toxic paint washes into the sea, the plastic molecules last foever in the bodies of those that eat it and those that eat them and so on from one generation to the next
we should assemble a team to photo document the real reef every year and update the mural with natural paints maybe then we really might save it