Community and Co-operation: C.U. Cycling’s First Meeting

On December 4, 2012, 17 people turned up for the first community cycling meeting hosted by C.U. Cycling. This was the third meeting for C.U. Cycling, but also the first to attempt to bring the community together.

At the meeting, we saw undergraduate and graduate students, Carleton staff, CUSA and GSA representatives, a Carleton Safety staff member, and one blogger and Citizens for Safe Cycling member. We had a pretty diverse group. To all who came out: thank you!

During the 1.5-hour meeting, we discussed topics of cycling in Ottawa, Carleton, and worldwide. No cycling event would be complete without a mention of cycling in the Netherlands and Copenhagen to serve as inspiration.

We discussed some ideas on what we’d like to see at Carleton as well as some ideas for the city as a whole. We had both broad goals and more specific ones.

We were very fortunate to hear from a representative at Carleton Safety who was able to quickly point out whether our ideas and suggestions were feasible or not. In our discussion, Alice-Rose Mick asked whether we felt that there was enough bicycle racks at Carleton. Although many of us felt that there were in fact many bike racks, we would have liked to see covered bike parking to protect our bikes from rain and snow. This allowed for a discussion of the challenges of designing covered bike parking to comply with fire regulations and safety codes.

Another key discussion revolved around the question of data. Colum Grove-White mentioned that at the University of Victoria in British Columbia, conduct traffic study reports to determine travel modes for getting to school. We discussed ideas for how to conduct our own data collection at Carleton. Some suggestions included working with students in quantitative research statistics classes to conduct random surveys or to conduct observational studies to determine how students are getting to Carleton.

These are some big goals that we’d like to see in the future, but for now, we hope to focus on getting C.U. Cycling off the ground and running. Until we can consider collecting data or working on new projects, we need to work to make C.U. Cycling a reality.

In the short term, we need to develop a mission statement, goals, and vision for the club.

Together, we identified four key elements of C.U. Cycling:

  1. Advocacy: communicating with other groups on campus and in Ottawa and expressing our stance to the city and other groups
  2. Bicycle co-operative: bicycle repairs and bicycle workshops
  3. Research: partnering with professors and the academic community at Carleton to gather more data about cycling patterns, cycling use, and multi-modal trips at Carleton
  4. Community, events, and awareness

We also need your help. If you’re interested in being a part of the executive team at C.U. Cycling, email us at

Additional Coverage
Gaetan Provencher also provided the following summary on his blog, Velotout: “C.U. Cycling” (french). This has also been posted on Citizen Cycle.


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