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|Rack It Up! Program Installs More Bike Racks in Monadnock Region|
|Published Tuesday, October 3, 2017|
Rack It Up!, a program created by Healthy Monadnock partner, Monadnock Alliance for Sustainable Transportation (MAST), and implemented by Southwest Region Planning Commission (SWRPC) has installed 54 new bicycle racks in Walpole, Harrisville and Jaffrey. These racks can accommodate a total of 108 bicycles. In addition, the Town of Winchester is on track to install 28 bicycle racks, which can accommodate 56 bicycles.
These new bicycle racks bring the total number of bicycle racks installed by Rack It Up! in the Monadnock Region to 301, for a total of 602 parking spaces in 80 locations throughout Keene, Swanzey, Hinsdale,Troy, Harrisville, Jaffrey, Walpole, and Winchester.
The bicycle racks were paid for by a Partnerships to Improve Community Health (PICH) grant awarded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for the Healthy Monadnock initiative. According to Mari Brunner, a planner at SWRPC, there are vulnerable populations living in Keene and other towns who do not own cars and depend on bicycles for transportation. For example, youth who are too young to drive are one population that benefits greatly from bicycling. It gives them a sense of independence and makes them less dependent on parents to get them around. The Jaffrey Public Library expanded their afterschool program because of the bike racks.
The Rack It Up! program’s mission is to promote bicycling as a safe and convenient transportation option by increasing both the number and visibility of bike racks in communities in the Monadnock Region. Brunner said that the organization is in the process of creating a guide for employers about promoting walking, bicycling and other forms of active transportation. Healthy Monadnock is a community engagement initiative designed to foster and sustain a positive culture of health throughout Cheshire County and the Monadnock Region.
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