Complete Streets Makeover – Nomination Page

Rochester's Complete Streets Makeover

Is there an intersection or trouble spot in your daily travels that doesn’t feel safe to bike or walk?
Nominate it for a
Complete Street Makeover.

Submit your nomination by
Friday, July 30, 2021.

Reconnect Rochester and our team of partners believe streets are for people (not just cars). No one understands what it’s like to use our streets better than those who walk, bike, roll and ride along them everyday.

We need your help identifying the intersections and trouble spots in Monroe County that could be redesigned to make them safer for everyone.

If you’d rather fill out a hard copy, CLICK HERE to print a submission form and mail it to:

Reconnect Rochester
Hungerford Complex
1115 East Main St., Box #61
Rochester, NY 14609

Selection and Eligibility

From the public nominations received, our Steering Committee will select a Complete Streets Makeover Winner based on established judging criteria. Selection factors include crash safety data of incidents at the location, potential for design improvements, proximity to kids, and evidence of community support for change. 

Please note that the following previous winners & finalists are NOT eligible because they have already received on-street installations and/or design renderings.

  • N. Clinton Ave. / block along La Marketa site
  • S. Clinton, S. Goodman & Henrietta St.
  • Monroe Ave. & Sutherland St. (Village of Pittsford) 
  • Parsells Ave & Greeley St. 
  • Lake Ave. & Phelps St. / block encompassing Lakeview Tower 
  • Monroe Ave., Canterbury Rd. & Dartmouth St. 

What’s in a Makeover

The COMPLETE STREETS MAKEOVER WINNER receives:

  • a community workshop to hear resident and stakeholder input, facilitated by the Community Design Center
  • a professional street re-design that will make it safer for those walking and biking, created by the engineering team at Stantec  
  • an on-street installation of temporary design improvements (using equipment from the HealthiKids traffic calming library), and street painting supplies & expertise
  • speed data collection as evidence of the project’s impact, and
  • ongoing guidance and support of neighborhood follow-up advocacy to make the changes permanent. 

To get a sense for the project, watch this short film about our Complete Streets Makeover project at the intersection of Parsells & Greeley in 2018.

From the remaining nominations, the Steering Committee will select two (2) additional locations as DESIGN RENDERING WINNERS. Each of these locations will receive a conceptual drawing by the engineering team at Stantec to show possible street design improvements that would make it safer for those walking and biking. The neighborhood can use the illustration as a starting point for further community conversation, and a tool to advocate for improvements.

What is a “Complete Street?”

A complete street allows everyone—regardless of age, ability or mode of transportation—to safely access that street. It is a street shared by pedestrians, bicyclists, transit riders and motorists. All complete streets are not the same. As Smart Growth America explains: 

“There is no singular design prescription for Complete Streets; each one is unique and responds to its community context. A complete street may include: sidewalks, bike lanes (or wide paved shoulders), special bus lanes, comfortable and accessible public transportation stops, frequent and safer crossing opportunities, median islands, accessible pedestrian signals, curb extensions, narrower travel lanes, roundabouts, and more. A Complete Street in a rural area will look quite different from a Complete Street in a highly urban area, but both are designed to balance safety and convenience for everyone using the road.”

Photos on the left show a street designed exclusively for cars; photos on the right show a “complete street” designed for people.

Our goal with the Complete Streets Makeover is to bring attention to complete street design as one critical factor in creating streets that are safe for everyone.

Learn More

Visit Complete Streets Makeover program page to learn more about why we do this, the process components, and short films about our past projects.

Program Partners

Reconnect Rochester
City&Council Stack 287 logo
HealthiKids
Community Design Center of Rochester - CDCR
stantec_black_pos_rgb (1)
GTC Logo (2019)

Library: books, movies, etc.

Looking to feed your brain? These are some of the best books, articles, movies and podcasts we’ve found on the subject of transportation alternatives. If you’ve read something truly great and it’s not listed here, please let us know about it.

Government

Below are links where you can find infrastructure and planning related news, documents, and contact information for your city/town/village. If you know of a resource that isn’t listed here, please let us know about it.

ROC Transit Day

ROC Transit Day

ROC Transit Day returns in September 2020! Stay tuned to this page for updates about this year’s planned festivities.

ROC Transit Day is a grassroots campaign organized by Reconnect Rochester in collaboration with RTS to encourage Rochesterians to use public transit and go car-free for one day.

For inspiration, check out photos from ROC Transit Days past… 2015, 2014 and 2013.

ROC in Transit

ROC in Transit

Join us for an evening with friends and fellow transportation enthusiasts

Friday, May 18, 2018
6:00 – 9:00 pm
Rochester Academy of Medicine
1441 East Avenue

Featuring:

Silent & Live Auctions  //  Jazz Music  //  Delicious Food  //
Wine & Beer ($5 suggested donation per drink)

Advance Tickets are $25 per person
On sale thru Thurs May 17 @ 12pm

 

Tickets will be $30 at the door.

Can’t make it on May 12? Consider making a tax-deductible donation to support the event.

ROC in Transit proceeds will fuel our work to expand transportation choices through advocacy efforts and programs and projects like:

Rochester Street Films

Bus Stop Seating

Bike Share Station Sponsorship

Transportation & Poverty Initiative

Rochester Bike Share

Rochester Bike Share Fundraiser

Help keep our bike share
station on Hudson Avenue.

Donate $20 or more and you’ll receive
ride credits for you and a friend.

Pace bikes have settled into our local culture as an easy, convenient way to get around. Ridership continues to rise, and the 2018 bike share season was a great success. Rochesterians rode an average of 300 rides per day and accumulated a season total of more than 20,000 hours! Amazing.

Each bike share station requires a $9,000 annual sponsorship. In 2017, 2018 and 2019 , Reconnect Rochester pooled the resources of everyday citizens like you to support a station on Hudson Avenue in Upper Falls, a city neighborhood where large corporate sponsors might not be so easily found. Together we made sure that Rochester’s bike share system remained successful and accessible to all.

We’d like to thank the following groups and individuals for contributing to the bike share campaign in 2019…

Adam + Meredith Smith
Adrian Martin
Arian Horbovetz
Benjamin Osborne
Bennie Johnston
Bill & Kathy Cochrane
Brent Williams
Caitlin Meives
Canning Family
Charlie Lawlor
Chris Hill
Chrissie Irish
Christie A.
Daryl Odhner
David Riley

Doug Kelley
Emily Y.
Gary Young
Howard Decker and Amy Hecker
Jake Wilson
Janet Clarke-Hazlett
Jason Partyka
Jeff Dormitzer
Jenny Call
Jim McIntosh & Mo Duggan
Joe McElveney
John & Nancy Thomas
Jon Schull
Josh Herz
Karen Lankeshofer

Kathryn O’Brien
Kecia McCullough: Black Girls Do Bike
Kelly & Dana Davis
Kevin Farrell
Kevin Kelley
Marianne Zelazny
Marjorie & Rob Rolleston
Marjorie Rolleston
Mary & Tom Myers
Maryagnes Lupien
Matthew Ehlers
Meeka Johnakin
Michael Brisson
Mona S.
Patrick & Robin Flanigan

Pete & Lindsay Nabozny
Phil Borrelli
Randy Meyer
Rick James
Sara & Owen Zacharias
Scott & Avila Cranfill
Stetzer Family
Suzy Farrell
The Peers family
The Smith Family (Grace, Jane, Andrew, and Bonnie)
Tom & Christiane Moughan
Tom & Debby Peers
Tom Morgan
Tom Perry

Maps, Data and Tools

Below are links to maps, data and other tools we’ve found quite useful and you might too. If you know of a resource that isn’t listed here, please let us know about it.

Rochester Snow Down

The Great Rochester Snow Down

If not cleared, even the slightest amount of snow can make our sidewalks and bus stops inaccessible for weeks at a time. Help us keep our city moving by taking part in The Great Rochester Snow Down!

 2017 SnowDown stats:

60 unique volunteers. 90 including repeats. 300 volunteer hours

6 major corridors in all 4 city quadrants (Monroe/N.Clinton/Dewey/Genesee/Joseph/Lake)

12 miles of sidewalk cleared

100+ bus stops, bike racks, curb cuts, and fire hydrants cleared

Check out our coverage by the D and C.

Thanks to all our wonderful volunteers, sponsors, and supporters!

We are currently seeking volunteers and sponsors for Rochester Snow Down 2018. Contact us to find out how to get your business or group involved in this important community effort.

 Why is this important?

A great deal of time and money is spent clearing roads so that people in cars can get around. Let’s make sure that our friends and neighbors on foot, bicycle, bus, wheelchair, walker, stroller, etc. can get around safely.

What’s in it for me?

Raffle Prizes will be awarded shortly. Winners will be contacted by email or phone. Stay tuned!

What else can people do to help?

Per Rochester’s sidewalk ordinance, property owners are responsible for clearing the sidewalk in front of their property. The city provides only supplemental service when 4 inches of new snow has accumulated.

Put simply: in the morning when you’re digging out your car, take the extra couple minutes to make sure your neighbors can walk by and admire your decorations. Encourage your favorite businesses to keep nearby sidewalks, bus stops, and bike racks clear so every patron has access.

Start something…

If you can’t make our Saturday events, we encourage you to organize your own mini Snow Down! Just snap a photo of you and your friends shoveling any public sidewalk, bus stop, or bike rack and post it to social media using #RocSnowDown to be entered in the drawing.

Sponsors

The Great Rochester Snow Down is made possible by your donations and the following sponsors and partners.

Brue Coffee
El Pilon Criollo
Marshall Street Bar & Grill
Center for Disability Rights
Wegmans

Thanks to everyone who participated in Rochester Snow Down 2016!

“Captain” Dan Speciale
Irene Allen
Brue Coffee
Bill Collins
El Pilon Criollo
John DeRycke
DeWain Feller
Flower City Americorps
Mike Governale
Joseph Avenue Business Association
John Lam
Lincoln Library
Ravi Mangla
Jim Mayer
Brenda Massie
Jason Partyka
Nicholas Russo
Renee Stetzer & Family
Rohan Parikh
Sara Jenks
John Thomas
Southeast Neighborhood Service Center
RIT Service Frat
Salvatore’s Pizza

 

 

Rochester Street Films: Submissions

Rochester Street Films

Rochester Street Films: Submissions

Reconnect Rochester in partnership with Floating Home Films are now seeking proposals for transportation-based documentary story concepts.

As part of our Rochester Street Films program, Reconnect Rochester is offering $500 and an opportunity to work with local filmmakers Alex Weiser and Ander Kazmerski who will guide you through the process of creating a film about transportation. People of all neighborhoods and filmmaking experience are encouraged to submit a proposal. Our selection process will be based on the cohesion of the concept and the perceived impact this film could have on the community.

***

This year’s submission period has closed. But if you’d still like to make a film for a future Rochester Street Films event, contact us.

***

Theme: Moving Beyond the Automobile

Are you or someone you know living without a car in Monroe County? Tell us that story – the whys and hows. Whether your subject does it to stay active, help the environment, or save cash, we want to know what their daily experiences are like. What are the challenges they face year-round? What are the rewards? And how has living car-free changed their life – for better or worse?

Submission Requirements

  1. 100 word or less summary of your film concept.

  2. The film’s one-sentence logline.

  3. 100 word or less reason why this film must be made.

  4. 60 second or less video example. Quality of camera does not matter, but show us what we might see in this film. You can narrate, show your neighborhood, interview someone. Let’s see a flavor of your approach. This does not need to be polished. Include a link in your submission.

To Submit:

Please email your submission (items 1-4 above) to info@ReconnectRochester.org. Your submission must be received before midnight on December 9, 2016 or it may not be considered.

Terms & Conditions

  • All creative approaches will be considered and there are no restrictions regarding style, genre, or creative approach. However, to qualify, productions MUST somehow relate to the theme Moving Beyond the Automobile as outlined above, AND take place partly or entirely within Monroe County, New York.

  • All submissions must be received by midnight on Friday December 9, 2016.

  • Alex Weiser and Ander Kazmerski of Floating Home Films will be available to the winning filmmakers for guidance and consultation throughout the entire film production. Individual pre-production meetings will be held with the winning filmmakers on Thursday 12/15 and Friday 12/16. Winning concepts must be completed by 2/20.

  • Filmmakers who submit must have access to a camera and editing software to make their film. Equipment will not be provided.
  • All dialogues must be presented in English or with English subtitles.

  • There are no restrictions on length, however, typical Street Films are 5-15 minutes in length.

  • There is no ‘Premiere’ requirement for inclusion, however we will give preference to new, unmade ideas.

  • Work-in-progress films that are not final cuts may be entered, but please clearly note what is missing or will change.

  • If your film was submitted for previous editions of Rochester Street Films, you may re-enter it if you have made significant changes and if the eligibility requirements are met.

  • More than one entry may be submitted, however, each entry must be submitted individually. Please do not send one email containing multiple film ideas.

  • Reconnect Rochester reserves the right to determine the eligibility of any project submitted.

  • By submitting a film entry, the producer agrees that all rights and clearances have been obtained, that any copyrighted sound, music, image or content included in the work have been legally cleared for use, and that Reconnect Rochester is not responsible for any copyright infringement resulting from public screenings.

  • By submitting a film entry, you acknowledge Reconnect Rochester has the right to copy any submitted material and use images and trailers for non-commercial use. Promotional use may include a clip of any accepted film being included in a radio or TV program, or in a festival trailer for Rochester Street Films.

  • $500 will be given to the winning film director(s) and will be fulfilled approximately 8-12 weeks after completion of the film. Award recipient is responsible for all applicable taxes on cash prizes. Eligibility is at the sole discretion of Reconnect Rochester.

  • By submitting a film entry, you acknowledge that you have read and agree to abide by these Terms & Conditions.

Sponsors

Rochester Street Films is made possible by your donations and the following sponsors.

American Public Transportation Association
TRU Yoga
Become a Sponsor Today!

Producers

Reconnect Rochester
Alex and Ander

Supporters

The Little Theatre
Editions Printing
Streetfilms.org

Rochester Street Films Sponsor Info

Rochester Street Films

Sponsor Opportunities

Rochester Street Films aims to identify, explain and discuss complex transportation and urban planning concepts that impact the health and vitality of our region.

Events are held at The Little Theatre and feature a curated mix of locally produced short films, live panel discussions, national speakers, plus material sourced from Streetfilms.org and other film archives. All of our locally produced films are then shared with our media partners, and posted online and on social media so we can reach the widest possible audience.

Your sponsorship helps us create educational films such as these...

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Through these films and events, Reconnect Rochester is able to share our vision of a region connected by a robust transportation network that makes it easy for everyone—regardless of physical or economic ability—to get around.

For more information or to sign on as a sponsor email us or call (585) 340-7555.

2020 Sponsor Levels:

Title Sponsor

  • $5,000full season
  • Name Part of Official Event Title
  • Your Ad in Program Handout
  • Logo in Film Credits
  • Logo displayed on Print Ads
  • Logo displayed on Event Posters
  • Shout-out at Each Event
  • Your Ad On-screen Pre-show
  • Seats Reserved at Event (8)
  • Logo in Program
  • Logo + Link on Website
  • Shout-out on Social Media
  • Meet & Greet with Guest Speakers

Premier

  • $2,500full season
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Gold

  • $1,000full season
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  • (4 seats)
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Classic

  • $500full season
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Title Sponsor

  • $5,000full season
  • or
  • $2,500per event
  • Your Name Part of Official Event Title
  • Logo in Film Credits
  • Your Ad On-screen Pre-show
  • Logo Displayed on Print Ads
  • 8 Seats Reserved at Event
  • Logo displayed on Event Posters
  • Your Ad in Program
  • Logo in Program
  • Logo + Link on Website
  • Shout-out at Each Event
  • Shout-out on Social Media
  • Meet & Greet with Guest Speakers

Premiere

  • $2,500full season
  • or
  • $1,000per event
  • Logo in Film Credits
  • Your Ad On-screen Pre-show
  • Logo Displayed on Print Ads
  • 4 Seats Reserved at Event
  • Logo displayed on Event Posters
  • Logo in Program
  • Logo + Link on Website
  • Shout-out at Each Event
  • Shout-out on Social Media
  • Meet & Greet with Guest Speakers

Gold

  • $1,000full season
  • or
  • $500per event
  • Your Ad On-screen Pre-show
  • 4 Seats Reserved at Event
  • Logo displayed on Event Posters
  • Logo in Program
  • Logo + Link on Website
  • Shout-out at Each Event
  • Shout-out on Social Media
  • Meet & Greet with Guest Speakers

Classic

  • $500full season
  • or
  • $250per event
  • 2 Seats Reserved at Event
  • Logo in Program
  • Logo + Link on Website
  • Shout-out on Social Media
  • Meet & Greet with Guest Speakers

Contact us to become a Rochester Street Films sponsor today! Or ask us about advertising opportunities for your business…

Advertising Opportunities

  • On-screen pre-show billboard ad
    $100 per event (or $240 full season)
  • On-screen pre-show 30 second commercial
    $300 per event (or $720 full season)
  • On-screen pre-show 60 second commercial
    $500 per event (or $1,200 full season)
  • On-screen ads & payment must be received 1 full week prior to showtime.
    Contact us for acceptable file formats.

Rochester Street Films

Rochester Street Films

This film series—produced in partnership with Floating Home Films—aims to identify, explain and discuss complex transportation concepts, and facilitate community conversation about the current state and future possibilities for mobility in Rochester.

Together with locally produced and archival short films, live panel discussions help to stimulate community conversation on a wide range of related  topics including Rochester’s transportation history, bus transit system, cycling infrastructure, pedestrian life, street design, “car culture”, equity issues, urban sprawl, and more.

To be notified of future events, follow us on Facebook or subscribe to our e-newsletter.

 Next up:

Join us for a film screening and panel discussion about the rewards for us personally and as a society when more people ride bikes.

 The evening will feature curated short film clips to inspire and provoke thought, followed by a live discussion with Justin Booth of GObike Buffalo and leaders in Rochester’s bike community.

Reserve your seat by making an online donation to Reconnect Rochester (suggested $5 – $25).

If you aren’t able to make a donation, you are still welcome to attend.

THE PROGRAM:

Why do we bike? Whether you want to save money, reduce your carbon footprint, or live a longer and healthier life, using a bike to get around can enrich your life and bring you joy. For any city or society, biking can be a vehicle to build community, fight climate change, support the local economy and attract a new generation of young people craving mobility options. That’s a lot of checked boxes!

We hope you’ll join us for an evening to reflect on Why We Bike. Bring a neighbor, friend, or colleague that you might inspire to incorporate biking into their life, and support our city becoming a more bicycle friendly community.

Following the films, a panel discussion and audience Q&A will be moderated by Mona Seghatoleslami of WXXI News, an avid ROC bicyclist (and former star of Rochester Street Films).

THE PANELISTS:

Justin Booth, MPH, Executive Director, GObike Buffalo
Dr. Scott MacRae, Reconnect Rochester Advisor & Community Bike Advocate
Karen Rogers, Owner, Exercise Express LLC
Rashad Smith, Co-Founder, Roc Freedom Riders

“The bicycle is in many ways the easiest solution to a multitude of problems.” (Anna Brones)

 Previously…

The Rochester Street Films below explored topics including accessibility, poverty, urban exploration and car culture.  If you would like to host a mini screening of Rochester Street Films with your friends or neighbors, please contact us.

This film explores transportation as a systemic equity issue, shares a front line view of the struggle, and highlights the innovative ways some local organizations are meeting transportation needs. Interested in the full virtual event screening, complete with follow-up panel discussion? Check that out here.

The film captures the “Complete Streets Makeover” of N. Clinton Avenue in Rochester, NY.

In 2016 a young child was struck and killed by a vehicle near the corner of Parsells Ave. & Greeley St. in Rochester’s Beechwood neighborhood. In 2018, with the help of Reconnect Rochester, Stantec and a host of other partners, the neighborhood rallied to transform the intersection into a safe and welcoming space for everyone. This is the story of their “Complete Streets Makeover.”

This film focuses on the lives of three Rochesterians. Cee Cee, Nassir, and Eve give us a firsthand look at what life is like when you can barely afford to buy a bus pass, much less a car. After you watch the film, be sure to check out the live presentation and panel discussion here.

Many urban neighborhoods throughout the U.S. were destroyed by the construction of new highways during the latter half of the twentieth century. In many cases, low income and minority neighborhoods were selected as locations for these new highways to pass through, with little consideration for the people who would have their homes destroyed and lives upended. This film highlights current efforts to repair the damage done by Rochester’s Inner Loop highway.

Ericka Jones, a Systems Advocate at Center for Disability Rights, focuses on a segment of our population often overlooked. For people with disabilities, Ericka shows us how running a simple errand requires careful planning days in advance. Ironically, even the streets themselves can become barriers to living a productive life.

Alex Freeman has previously made several films about local cyclists. With this project Alex attempts to understand why the automobile has had such a grip on the hearts and minds of Rochester commuters.

Nate Butler grew up around cars. Learning to work on them with his dad as a kid, he just figured that cars were the only way to get around. Now a student at R.I.T., Nate has taken up cross-country running and he’s learning something new about his community with every step.

Rochester NY in February. It’s 19ºF and the ground is slick with snow and ice. But Mona Seghatoleslami, host of WXXI Classical 91.5 FM will brave the cold attempting to ride her bike from her home in Brighton to her job in downtown Rochester (about 4 miles). Afterwards, Mona heads to Tryon Bike shop to find out what type of gear she’ll need for serious winter cycling.

Transportation planning is about giving people choices. Interview with Erik Frisch, Transportation Specialist for the City of Rochester.

Transportation is key for economic development and making a great city. Interview with Heidi Zimmer-Meyer, President of Rochester Downtown Development Corporation.

Alex Freeman introduces us to several Rochesterians who choose alternate modes of transportation.

For some perspective, Rochester Street Films looks back at how attitudes towards urban planning and transportation have changed over the last century. Remember this one?

Sponsors

Rochester Street Films is made possible by the generosity of our sponsors.

The Community Foundation
Lori's Natural Foods
SWBR
Become a Sponsor Today!

Supporters

Editions Printing

Producers

Reconnect Rochester
Floating Homes Films

We welcome sponsorship and advertising support for Rochester Street Films. Contact us at info@ReconnectRochester.org to learn more and express your interest.

Walking

You can walk the dog, walk with the kids, or just take a stroll by yourself. However you do it, walking is good for the mind, body, and soul—so do it.

And if you’d like to make the streets in your neighborhood more pedestrian friendly, see below for a collection of useful information & resources.

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People who live in walkable neighborhoods weigh 6-10 lbs less on average than those who live in car-dependent areas.

Walking is good for our physical and mental health.

It helps lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, osteoporosis, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity and some types of cancer.1 Walking regularly can help reduce stress and symptoms of depression.2 It boosts our mood, self-confidence, levels of happiness and cognitive functioning.

Walking is also one of the easiest and cheapest ways to fit exercise into our daily lives without too much extra effort.

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For every 10 minutes a person spends commuting daily by car, he or she spends 10% less time engaging in community activities.

Walking is good for our communities.

When surveyed, people who feel like their communities are safe to walk around in at night, clean and beautiful are more likely to report being happy. More walkable communities foster social connections that can improve the quality of life and levels of happiness among residents.3

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If 10% of U.S. adults began walking on a regular basis, we could avert $5.6B in heart disease related medical costs every year.

Walking more can save us money.

Cars are the second highest expense for households in the US.4 Walking more and driving less can reduce fuel and maintenance costs.

Beyond our individual wallets, walking more and driving less can save on public health costs. The health impacts from traffic crashes, physical inactivity and air pollution alone contribute hundreds of billions of dollars in public costs each year.5

To report a malfunction with a traffic signal anywhere in Monroe County, please call (585) 753-7700. Other issues with sidewalks, crosswalks or public pathways should be directed to your town or city hall. If you are not getting a satisfactory response, let us know. We may be able to help.

Everyone — whether walking, riding a bicycle, driving a car, or taking public transportation–has a right to safe, convenient access to destinations. Yet far too many of our streets have been designed for cars only. Wide roads, speeding traffic, lack of sidewalks, bicycle lanes and safe crossings make many streets in our community unnecessarily dangerous. So how can you help to make the streets your neighborhood safer and more pleasant places for everyone?

TIP #1: Take Time to Enjoy Your Surroundings

The best way to create a walker’s paradise is to slow down. Make time to walk and bike to work or to run your errands. Encourage your neighbors to do the same. A few people walking and biking in your neighborhood can have a butterfly effect, encouraging more people to do the same over time. And the more pedestrians and cyclists there are in the area, the more drivers will be reminded to take it slow.

TIP #2: Be Street Smart

Whether you’re walking, biking, or driving, follow the rules of the road. Stay alert—put down your phone and remove those earbuds from your ears! When walking, use the sidewalk or nearby paths whenever possible. If there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic as far to the left as possible. Cross using traffic signals & crosswalks and be sure to look left, right and left again before crossing. Be a good role model and teach your kids from an early age how to stay safe on the road.

TIP #3: Team Up with Neighbors

When it comes to improving neighborhood streets there is perhaps no better tool than an active neighborhood association. If you already have one in your area find out when they meet and join them. If you don’t, start small and strike up a conversation with your neighbors about the improvements you’d all like to see on your street. Would you like to add street trees? A stop sign? Or reduce the speed on your block? There is power in numbers and it’s all possible if you you’re persistent and stay positive.

TIP #4: Call Reconnect Rochester

Once you’ve done 1-3 and you’re actively talking with your neighbors, you’ll probably have some ideas you’d like to get off the ground. If you’re not sure where to start, contact us. We’d be happy to help.

Cycling

Ask any passionate biker what happiness means and they’ll probably say, “You can’t buy happiness, but you can buy a bike and that is close enough.”

If you’re interested in using a bike to get around Rochester, see below for a collection of local cycling tools & resources.

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Regular cycling can cut your risk of heart attack in half.

Just one hour on a bike can burn well over 500 calories (depending on incline and how quickly you’re pedaling). It’s an excellent way to get your heart rate up and can actually help slow the decline of cardiovascular health1—possibly even cutting your risk of heart disease by up to 82%.2

And not only can your bike make you physically fit, it may also make you smarter. Biking, along with other types of aerobic exercise, has been shown to increase the hippocampus, the part of your brain related to memory and learning.3

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Bikes can fit within the space of 1 car.

In addition to the health & social benefits of the bicycle, there are economic perks to consider as well. For individuals, cycling can greatly reduce the costs of transportation and health care.4

While cyclists tend to spend less per shopping trip than drivers, they also tend to make more trips, pumping more total money into the local economy over time. Multiply that by the additional number of bikes that can fit within a single car parking space, and that could mean a big boost for local businesses.5

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Miles of bike paths in Rochester
(including 60.4 lane miles on-street)

Here in Rochester we have some of the most attractive trails in New York State, including the Genesee Riverway Trail and Erie Canalway Trail.

Within our metro area there are over 230 miles of multi-use trails, 60.4 miles of on-street bike facilities, and more being added every year.4

With the rise in popularity of bicycling, this trail network offers significant social and economic benefits to adjacent communities. In fact, simply having access to bike paths can increase your home value by 11%.5

For cyclists that are new to the area or for residents who are new to biking, we hope this overview of Rochester’s great bike scene is helpful.

Check out our Community Cycling Calendar here, Rochester’s one-stop-shop for group bike rides, clinics, advocacy opportunities, and any bike-themed event.

Have a group to add to this page? Let us know at cycling@reconnectrochester.org 

Reconnect Rochester: That’s us. We aim to normalize riding a bike in Monroe County. Our advocacy efforts focus on mobility equity, accessible recreation, sustainability & complete streets. We teach regular classes to get more people comfortable biking and lead the Flower City Feeling Good bike ride series in the summer. We offer local history bike tours as well.

Rochester Bicycling Club (RBC): Founded in 1967, the Rochester Bicycling Club promotes the use of bicycles for sport, recreation, health, and transportation. They have several hundred members, covering a wide range of ages and abilities, who ride bicycles for fun and fitness.  They schedule nearly 400 rides per year covering the greater Rochester area and the beautiful Finger Lakes region.

Rochester Accessible Adventures is on a mission to improve the health and wellness of people with disabilities by guiding communities to create a culture of physical accessibility, social inclusion, and equitable open access in recreation, sports and tourism.

Black Girls Do Bike Rochester grows and supports a community of women of color who share a passion for cycling. They champion efforts to introduce the joy of cycling to all women, but especially, black women and girls. They offer a comfortable place where female cyclists can support, advise, organize meet-ups/rides, and promote skill-sharing. They look to share positive images of ladies and their bikes that affirm the truth that black girls do indeed bike! Check out their summer Unity Rides on Thursdays.

ROC Freedom Riders: A movement comprising Black people and their allies riding bikes to Black Spaces, Black Places and Acknowledging Black Faces. Their routes are intentional and action-oriented. Their bicyclists ride in the spirit of the original Freedom Riders of the 1940s and 1960s.

Rochester Bicycle Time! is a group of friends that ride bicycles. Their mission is simple. All bikes, all riders regardless of skill level. Every Thursday, they meet at Parcel 5 (285 E Main Street) at 7pm and roll out at 7:30pm for their Thursday Night Cruise.

Rochester Deaf Cyclists: Rochester has one of the largest deaf populations per capita in the country and so many love to bike! Check out this Facebook page for group rides.

Keeping It Classy Cycle Club (KICCC) was formed in 2019 to host well-executed, accessible social rides. Their motto: Be classy. Ride Bikes. Have fun. All Seasons. Turn heads. They organize the Flower Pedal Populaire in the Spring and the Fall Classic in the Autumn.

Coffee & Cogs 585: Casual group rides ending with coffee at Rochester area coffee roasters and cafes.

R Community Bikes is a grassroots, non-profit bike co-op, staffed entirely by volunteers, that collects and repairs used bicycles for distribution, free of charge, to the Rochester area’s most needy children and adults. They give away over 2,000 bicycles every year and do over 3,000 repairs for their clients, many of whom depend on bicycles as their main source of transportation. RCB welcomes donations of bikes, bike parts, tools and money. They are always in need of volunteers to serve as mechanics and in a variety of other positions. You can also support them by buying one of their used, refurbished bikes.

Flower City Family Cycling (previously Kidical Mass Pittsford): Promotes safe, fun family bike rides. Their purpose is to create awareness of kids and families on bikes and the need for all road users to respect each other. FCFC brings together families who bike in an effort to provide a positive community experience and rides on which kids can practice their safety skills.

Conkey Cruisers is a grassroots Conkey Avenue neighborhood bicycling & wellness program that strives to inspire neighbors, especially children, to stay active and make healthy food choices. They aim to decrease obesity rates, create a positive image of their neighborhood and change negative perceptions of exercise. They promote nature, hiking, and biking in Northeast Rochester along the El Camino Trail.

Rochester Women Bike is a group of Rochester women who aim to make it easier for women to use a bicycle for transportation and recreation. They organize the annual Rochester Women’s Bike Festival, a free, day-long bike festival featuring workshops and demos.

Wheel Women of Tryon is a group of women having fun on two wheels! They welcome ALL who want to learn more about cycling and create happy adventures together.

WomanTours, a women-only bike tour company, is headquartered here in Rochester! They’ve been creating small, inn-to-inn road bicycle tours for women since 1995. Their trips are fully supported with two guides and a vehicle to serve you on the road, carry your luggage, provide your meals, show you the routes, and fit you to a bicycle if you need one. All you have to do is show up and ride!

Rochester Bike Kids (RBK): A dynamic, informal group of mostly young people who bike together regularly. All bikers are welcome. Their signature ride is the Wednesday Night Cruise (WNC). They congregate at Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Park in downtown Rochester every Wednesday at 7pm and roll out at 7:30.

Just for Giggles was started just to get cyclists together and grew organically through Facebook.  Rides posted by members tend to be more spontaneous and come with less notice. Their signature annual event is the Summer Solstice Ride.

Huggers: Though they began as a ski club in the mid-70’s, the Huggers have evolved as a club for active adults that just want to have fun. Their most popular activity has become cycling.  All of the Huggers rides and other events are posted on their HSC Meetup site.

Genesee Valley Pathfinders: Interpretive history of the Genesee Valley via bicycle. A leisure club for expeditions to lost roads, historic points of interest, and picnics.

George Eastman Bike Tour: See Rochester in a new way. A nod to George Eastman’s own love of cycling, the George Eastman Bike Tour will take you to ten different locations related to the life and work of this pioneer of popular photography and famous Rochesterian. You will see buildings and sites that shaped Eastman’s life—or were in turn shaped by him.

Bikes, Beers & Buildings is Rochester’s first bike scavenger hunt. It’s organized every year by the Young Urban Preservationists. See some of Rochester’s best known gems and little known secrets, get some exercise, and  learn something new about the Flower City.

Bike Shop Rides: Many of Rochester’s bike shops organize weekly rides. Check out your favorite Rochester bike shop for more details.

Rochester Youth Cycling Club: NICA NY Youth Mountain Biking Club in the Rochester, NY area for 6th-12th grade student riders.

ROOTZ: Youth & Beginner Mountain Biking USAC Club (fully insured with over a dozen regular ride leaders / ‘roll’ models) who undergo background checks.

Genesee Regional Off-Road Cyclists (GROC): Promotes off-road bicycling in the Greater Rochester community to enhance the quality of life for everyone. Your go-to organization for all things mountain biking.GROC organizes trail maintenance in addition to rides.

Rochester Gravel Collective: A gravel community centering on FTWNB, BIPOC, queer, and para-athletes. Workshops, socials, & group rides.

Genesee Valley Cycling Club: Affiliated with the United States Cycling Federation and USA Cycling, they are dedicated to the promotion and development of road racing in Monroe and the surrounding counties.

Western New York Bike Racing Club: Western New York’s resource for individuals looking to explore bike racing.

TIP #1: Follow the Law

Ride on the right side of the road as far to the right as you can while remaining safe. We recommend having three feet of clear space on each side. Ride three feet away from the curb or parked cars. This gives you maneuvering room. Follow all street signs, signals, and markings.

TIP #2: Be Conspicuous

Never let a driver say “I didn’t see them!” Make yourself easy to see by wearing bright colors. Ride where you are seen, which often means riding in the road rather than the sidewalk. If you’re proceeding straight through an intersection, ride in the center of the rightmost lane that allows you to proceed straight. This makes right hooks and left crosses, the two most common crashes, way less likely. Though it’s state law to have a white front light and a red rear light on your bike at night, it goes a long way towards making you conspicuous during the day as well, particularly when riding through underpasses or in the rain.

TIP #3: Be Predictable

Ride straight. Don’t meander in and out between parked cars. Scan frequently and make eye contact with other road users. Use your turn signals to let drivers know when you’re turning, changing lanes, or coming to a stop.

TIP #4: Plan Ahead

Know your route and be in the correct intersection position before the intersection. Since most crashes happen at intersections, be extra vigilant for turning vehicles. Anticipate drivers’ moves. Ride clear of road debris and potholes. At intersections, be in the rightmost lane for the direction you’re going.

TIP #5: Ride Ready

Wear a helmet; it’s the final protective layer for when every other layer of safety goes wrong. Inspect your bike briefly before you ride and make sure the tires are firm. You should always ride with some basic equipment with you, such as the tools to fix a flat tire.

For more cycling tips and resources visit BikeLeague.org.

Public Transportation

For many in our community, public transportation serves as a vital connection to get to their jobs and the services they need for a good quality of life.

If you’re interested in using public transit to get around Rochester, see below for a collection of local transit tools & resources.

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Trips taken on RTS each year

In 2014, Americans took a record 10.8 billion trips on public transportation—the highest annual ridership number in 58 years.1

People are choosing to use public transit for a variety of reasons; it’s convenient, less expensive than driving, and it’s better for our health and the environment.

And let’s not forget, over 25% of households in the city of Rochester don’t have access to a car. So for many of us, transit is the only way we can get our jobs, the grocery store, doctor appointments, or to visit family & friends.

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Annual household savings
with one less car

Households that use public transportation and live with one less car can save on average $9,162 annually.2

If you drive to work alone each day, your fixed costs (including fuel, maintenance, parking and depreciation) can exceed $1 per mile.3

Comparatively, a trip on RTS costs one buck.

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lbs.
The amount of CO2 emissions Rochester drivers could save everyday using public transit instead

It’s pretty clear that public transit can save us some green in our wallets. But driving less can also ease our impact on the planet, and that’s pretty green too.

Rochesterians all together drive over 10,907,000 miles a day.4 Now take a deep breath… That’s 3,781,271,334 pounds of CO2 pumped into our air each year.5

And all of that motoring around burns up 236+ MILLION gallons of gas each year6 or roughly 11,804,779 barrels of oil7; More than the U.S. imports from Kazakhstan, Egypt, China and UAE combined.8

To report an issue with RTS service or bus stops, please call RTS customer service at (585) 288-1700. To report issues with pedestrian infrastructure, see our Local Resources for Walking. If you are not getting a satisfactory response, let us know. We may be able to help.

TIP #1: Plan Your Trip

The key to any successful trip is to make plans before you leave. Get detailed transit directions at www.Google.com/transit or download the RTS app (Android | Apple iOS).

TIP #2: Prepare Your Fare

It helps to have your fare ready so you’re not fumbling for change at the farebox. RTS fareboxes accept coins and 1, 5, 10 & 20 dollar bills. Change is provided in the form of a Stored Value Pass (they never expire).

If desired, you can buy an All-Day Freedom Pass on the bus. Just tell the bus driver PRIOR to placing your money in the fare box.

You can also order fare cards online or by calling 585-288-1700.

Regular Fares:RTS Fares

TIP #3: Track Your Bus

Download the RTS Mobile App or visit Where’s My Bus to track your bus.

OR…

TEXT your bus stop ID number* to (585) 351-2878 or
EMAIL your bus stop ID number* (in the subject line) to WMB@RGRTA.COM

Within seconds you’ll receive the next three bus arrival times.

*The bus stop ID will be a 4-digit number in the upper left or lower right corner of the bus stop sign.

TIP #4: RTS Customer Service

If you still have questions or need further assistance, contact RTS Customer Service at(585) 288-1700 or TTY (585) 654-0210.