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Sanibel resident, city of Punta Gorda honored by state bicycling organization

By Staff | May 18, 2010

Darla Letourneau of Sanibel Island has been honored as Citizen Bike Advocate of the Year by the Florida Bicycle Association at its annual awards ceremony during the recent ProBike/ProWalk Florida Conference, held in Lakeland, Fla.
Letourneau was singled out for her efforts on behalf of cyclists and pedestrians through her in-depth research, influence in policy shaping, and role as steering committee member and driving force behind BikeWalkLee, a coalition working to create “Complete Streets” in Lee County (www.bikewalklee.org).
Also, the city of Punta Gorda (www.ci.punta-gorda.fl.us) was recognized by FBA as a “Florida Bike-Friendly Community.” Besides making a remarkable comeback from 2004’s Hurricane Charley, city leaders, its business community and citizens chose to embrace the concept and implement its plan to provide a safe, efficient and enjoyable environment for cyclists and pedestrians.
Among the reasons FBA chose Punta Gorda for this designation is the fact that earlier this year they became the first community in Florida to offer a free bike loaner program. Their commitment to completing Harborwalk, a 15-mile linear park that will circle the city, and the numerous ongoing activities and efforts by government, business, and residents alike to promote cycling for enjoyment and function are other important factors. FBA is proud to honor the city of Punta Gorda.
The FBA annual awards are presented to worthy recipients for their contributions to bicycling, to bring attention to the efforts and achievements of groups, organizations and individuals that help deliver the FBA’s mission to inspire and support people and communities to enjoy greater freedom and well being through bicycling.
Florida Bicycle Association envisions a state where people of all ages see bicycling as a normal, practical and safe transportation alternative and where drivers of motor vehicles respect and appreciate the presence of bicycles on the roadways. FBA is supported by membership dues and grants for safety education and both bicyclist and motor vehicle driver awareness programs.
Find out more online at www.floridabicycle.org.