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Minutes

01 - January 16, 2006 6:30 - 8:40 pm

Location: Flowers, 4247 University Way NE
Present: Kent Peterson (www.bicyclealliance.org); Bill Carr (meeting organizer); Michael Snyder; Robert Zverina; Dusty

We started with some introductions...

Michael Snyder has been carfree for a little over a year. He was inspired by an elderly neighbor who has lived in Seattle all her life without owning a car. He used to commute from Ballard to Redmond by bicycle and noted that the bike/bus combo was quicker than driving a single occupancy vehicle (especially on the evening return trip). He created an Excel spreadsheet to calculate the hidden costs of driving.

Kent Peterson is the Commuting Program Director for Bicycle Alliance. He rides 17.5 miles each way each day between downtown Seattle (Pioneer Square area) and his home in pedestrian-friendly downtown Issaquah. Prior to working at the Bike Alliance, he was a fulltime bicycle mechanic at Sammamish Valley Cycle in Redmond, where he still works part-time. He and his family (wife and two sons) have been carfree since 1987.

Bill Carr was active in Seattle CarFree Days 2001 & 2002. He has kept the carfree flame burning ever since. He organized this meeting. His vision is simple: to reduce the role of automobiles in urban areas.

Robert Zverina was co-organizer (with Sarah Kavage) of Seattle CarFree Days 2001 & 2002. After that he fell off, except for sporadic updates to www.thinksmall.org and occasional editorial contributions to Carbusters magazine.

Dusty is a CarFree meeting regular. He originally got interested because it was something social to do. He lives CarFree in Bellevue.

PURPOSE
The main question on the table was threefold:
     Who are we? What do we want? How do we get it?

DISCUSSION
It was decided that the next meeting will determine the identity, goal(s), and name of the group.

(Many possibilities were discussed, but the loose term "club" seemed most appropriate.)

Possible goals for the "club" were enumerated:
 - To lobby for legislative change
 - Produce and disseminate educational materials
 - Organize consciousness-raising events
 - Work to have Seattle host the 2007 Towards Carfree Cities Conference.


ACTION
Attendees agreed to...
 - Bring at least one other person with them to next meeting.
 - Research models of other CarFree organizations.
 - Consider the pros and cons of organizing a CarFree event for September 2006.
 - Ponder a vision for a CarFree organizational model which could be effective specific to Seattle as well as serve as a template for other communities.

* * *

Want to get in on the action? Please join our carfree yahoo group.