The Fairbanks Cycle Club Board of Directors sent the below email to Assembly members on 05-09-2024. However you feel about the budget, please consider writing to the Assembly to let them know. People can comment to the Assembly a couple of ways:

Email Sent to Assembly

Dear Assembly Members,

The Fairbanks Cycle Club would like to advocate for the Parks and Recreation Department in this budget cycle (no pun intended!).

The department supports cycling in the Fairbanks area several ways. It maintains parks that are used by many cyclists, such as Skyline Ridge Park, and Tanana Lakes, Chena Lake, Isberg, and Birch Hill Recreation Areas. Other borough-maintained areas that allow cycling include Pioneer Park, Growden Park (including the skate park), and the Carlson Center parking lot (a portion of which is now temporarily reserved for biking). We understand that parts of the Chena River path are maintained by the Parks and Recreation Department. These are all great places for people to cycle, especially for children who are just learning to cycle.

Additionally, the recently revised and adopted Comprehensive Recreational Trail Plan will help guide the department in working to improve our local trails and access to them.

The department has also put on many events that help get people out cycling, like the Winter Bike Panel, Winter Biking 101, and several Bike-to-Work-Week events held last year. As a club we put on several rides that take advantage of borough-maintained properties.

Cycling helps improve our community. It helps people be happier and healthier by getting outside to exercise. Plenty of studies have shown that both exercise and spending time in nature help improve physical and mental health. Cycling can also help reduce congestion on our roads and improve our air quality. A bike takes up far less room than a car and emits no pollutants. Cycling also helps our economy through outdoor retail sales and by providing opportunities for visitors.

We would like to see the budget for the Parks and Recreation Department increased so that it can help more people get outside exercising. Our borough trails could use work and our population could benefit from more cycling programs. A pump track would be a wonderful addition to one of our local parks!

However, we also understand that budgets are tight right now. We are pleased that Mayor Bryce Ward has called for a stable budget for the department. We hope that when voting on the overall budget that you will support the Parks and Recreation Department.

Thank you for your service!

Eric Troyer
FCC President