Safe cycling: Program could reduce injuries, deaths on roads

HARLINGEN — The city might ride the tide.

City commissioners are considering teaming up with a group of Rio Grande Valley cities in a campaign called Run Ride and Share.

The program helps protect the growing number of joggers and cyclists who use the Valley’s roadways.

“Any program that brings awareness to cyclists and runners, the city would be interested in participating in,” Assistant City Manager Gabriel Gonzalez said yesterday.

Last week, McAllen City Commissioner Veronica Whitacre, who founded the campaign, asked city commissioners to join the group that includes the cities of McAllen, Mission, Pharr, Weslaco and Edinburg.

“I’m very, very excited,” Whitacre, a cyclist, said. “Harlingen has a very enthusiastic cycling community.”

Whitacre said she wants to work with more cities to boost the group’s muscle at the state capitol.

The group plans to request Legislators help fund an educator’s salary as part of a program to heighten awareness of the dangers runners and cyclists face on roadways, Whitacre said.

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Cyclists ride along a bicycle lane down East Harrison Avenue Saturday morning. The Harlingen-San Benito Metropolitan Planning Organization has a Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan that could potentially create an interconnected network for cyclist commuters to transit between various Rio Grande Valley cities.