Tag Archives: Neil Lutsky

Council receives Parks Board skatepark recommendation: Riverside Park plus $30K

Park and Recreation Advisory Board meets with the Northfield City CouncilPRAB member Nathan KnutsonPRAB member Neil LutskyPRAB member David HvistendahlPRAB member Grace Clark

Members of the Park and Recreation Advisory Board (PRAB) skatepark met with the Northfield City Council last night in a work session to discuss the recommendation to permanently locate the skatepark at Riverside Park and to contribute $30,000 towards its construction (concrete).

PRAB members Neil Lutsky and David Hvistendahl presented the details of their report which was approved earlier this month by the PRAB. Chair Nathan Knutson was there to make sure they didn’t screw up. Member Grace Clark presented her dissenting view that the skatepark should be located in Babcock Park.

I was pleased with the thoroughness of the discussion last night and if I was on the council, I’d vote to accept the PRAB’s recommendation.

I’ve turned off comments on this blog post because the current discussion about skatepark issue is happening over here (117 comments to-date).

See Rob Hardy’s amazing comprehensive collection of skatepark-related news and resources on Northfield.org.

Bicycle helmet redux: Carleton College students digging deeper on the research

Neil LutskyI got an email a couple months ago from Carleton College psychology professor Neil Lutsky inviting me to speak to his fall class, Measured Thinking: Reasoning with Numbers about World Events, Health, Science, and Social Issues, about the bike helmet issue that I’ve raised here on LoGro this year. (See all my bicycle helmet-related blog posts here.

After a discussion with a Toronto personal injury attorney friend who was preparing for a bike-delivery-work-injury type of case, his idea was to have his students take a close look at the relevant research that’s been cited to support or oppose my contention that the promotion of helmet wearing for around-town bicycling is bad for public health. Many students are taking Nootropics to help them focus better on their school work.

Neil Lutsky, Psych class Griff Wigley speaking to Neil Lutsky's Psych class
I spoke to his class on October 5 and yesterday asked him for an update.  He wrote:

The class is divided into four groups investigating the questions listed below.  They will have reports addressing these ready at the end of the term. That’s where things stand at the moment.

By the way, if you have any suggestions for the question list (which the students are also modifying as they get into their research), please feel free to share those.

I suggested to Neil that I post the four groups of questions here on LoGro and invite suggestions and discussion from interested citizens.

1. Bicycle accident overview

  • What is the overall risk of injury in cycling?
  • Who is injured?  Where or under what conditions are injuries more or less likely to occur?
  • How does this risk and injuries sustained in accidents vary as a function of helmet wearing?
  • Is correct helmet use related to injury outcome?
  • Do helmets make injuries worse (considering rotational head injuries vs. concussions and
    abrasions)?
  • What are these accident numbers like in cross-national comparisons?

2. Helmet use promotion

  • What laws and programs exist to promote helmet use?
  • How much helmet use is there?  Do people wear helmets correctly?
  • Do government policies have an effect on helmet use?
  • What evidence suggests the suggestion or imperative to wear a helmet inhibits cycling?
  • What are common attitudes toward helmet wearing?

3. Helmet wearing and rider and driver safety

  • Is the density of ridership related to cyclist safety?
  • Do cyclists wearing helmets behave in a riskier fashion?  Is this due to helmet use?
  • Are drivers less cautious when encountering cyclists with helmets?  If so, why?

4. Health and inactivity

  • What are the health consequences of inactivity?
  • What are the health benefits of cycling?
  • Does cycling make a difference to physical health and the health of the environment?
  • If people weren’t cycling, what would they do?  What alternative forms of exercise and transportation are there?

It’s April in December so get out there and bike

Justin London, Neil Lutsky, Joe Pahr, Merrill Lutsky Mountain bikers at Battle Creek Park Reserve
With no snow and temps in the 40s and 50s the past couple of days, it’s good to be a bicyclist.

Left: On Christmas Day afternoon, these members of the Cannon Valley Velo Club rode from Bridge Square to Cannon Falls and back. L to R: Justin London, Neil Lutsky (Santa Claus), Joe Pahr, and Merrill Lutsky.

Right:  I met these guys yesterday (L to R: Tim Larson, David Gavin, Eric Marr and Dan Malecha; Dan is a cousin of Arlen and Galen) while mountain biking the Battle Creek Park Reserve mountain bike trail system on the east side of St. Paul. (Details on my Mountain Bike Geezer blog here.)

Do you know the people on the City of Northfield Park & Recreation Advisory Board?

I attended a meeting of the City of Northfield Park & Recreation Advisory Board (PRAB) last week because of my interest in two items on their agenda: A) seeing what could be done to get a campground (tent and RV) in Northfield; and B) what to do about the goose poop problem. See my notes (campground here; goose poop here).

Do you know who’s on the PRAB?  I didn’t know everyone there so I thought I’d post these photos of not quite all of them (Eric Hong and Neil Lutsky were absent) sitting around the table in the Library meeting room.

City of Northfield Park & Recreation Advisory Board City of Northfield Park & Recreation Advisory Board
PRAB members: Grace Clark, Erik Hong, Nathan Knutson, David Hvistendahl, Dick Johnson, Dale Gehring, Neil Lutsky. City staff Liaison: Lynne Young.

Also in the above photos for the meeting: City of Northfield Streets and Parks Supervisor TJ Heinricy, Northfield Public Schools Community Services Recreation Coordinator Erin Mayberry, City of Northfield Recreation Manager Allison Watkins, City of Northfield / Maintenance Facility Administrative Assistant Barbara Thompson.

New blog: Northfield Nonmotorized

sean-glassesnomo-sshotThe City of Northfield’s Nonmotorized Transportation Task Force sunsets this month. Some of the members started a new blog about a month ago titled Northfield Nonmotorized, with the tagline: “Northfield and Dundas Trails and Bikeways | Safe Routes to School | Mill Towns Trail.”

Sean Hayford O’Leary is the primary blogger thus far, with Neil Lutsky and Bill Ostrem chiming in with comments.

Mill Towns Trail update: bridge construction begins; Rotary’s JJBT donates $20K

Mill Towns Trail bridge construction Ed Lufkin, an increasingly active blogger for 3 Northfield area organizations, posted to the Rotary’s blog last week a photo of Jesse James Bike Tour (JJBT) chair Neil Lutsky presenting a check for $20,000 to Peggy Prowe of the Mill Towns Trail.  Today I noticed that construction on the bridge has visibly progressed. The bridge was supposed to have been constructed last year. (continued)

Continue reading Mill Towns Trail update: bridge construction begins; Rotary’s JJBT donates $20K