Madeline Kreider Carlson

Healthy communities, healthy bodies: member spotlight on Dave Lawful

It all began at a city council meeting in 2014.walking-distance-photo-credit-s-neumann

“I stood up and said, ‘I want to call your attention to something. I’m a bike commuter, but there just aren’t enough bikeways for me to get to where I need to go. Does Lone Tree have a plan for making improvements?”

Dave Lawful is a Lone Tree resident, engineer, bike advocate, member and volunteer with Bicycle Colorado. While he’s been adventuring by bicycle for years, recently he’s devoted his energy to promoting bicycling as a vehicle for healthy communities and healthy lifestyles.

“People are trying to do it right”

At the time of that city council meeting, Lone Tree had just received a Walk and Wheel grant from Kaiser Permanente. With technical assistance from Bicycle Colorado and Fehr & Peers Transportation Consultants, the grant enabled Lone Tree to study bicycling and walking options and create a plan for future improvements. At the end of the meeting, Dave was asked to join the citizen advisory committee for the grant.

Dave and his wife Helene moved to Lone Tree in 2013, drawn to the new RidgeGate development’s efficient homes and walkable, bikeable, new urbanist design with plenty of public green space. “What thrills me about living there is that people are trying to do it right,” he says. He loves living within easy walking distance of Lone Tree’s recreation center, arts center, public transit, parks and trails.

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Photo credit: Sarah Neumann

Walk and Wheel “enabled our public works engineers to put a plan in place to build out our complete streets infrastructure going forward, allowing them to be more effective and strategic in asking for resources to support bike infrastructure.”

“The plan reflects what the people of Lone Tree feel is most important for our community. It’s a beautiful thing,” Dave explained. Since the study, several effective, low-cost solutions have already been built. Dave looks forward to better access to the C-470 Bikeway, one of his personal priorities for Lone Tree. 

“My favorite secular holiday!”

Dave’s work with the Walk and Wheel grant led to an appointment to the Citizens’ Recreation Advisory Committee, where he reviews plans for parks, trails and other opportunities for people to enjoy Lone Tree’s landscape. In tandem with Lone Tree’s infrastructure investments, Dave had a vision for a station on Bike to Work Day to celebrate bike commuting—a first for the community.

Lone Tree’s first Bike to Work Day celebration in 2016, spearheaded by Dave, was a smashing success: 150 riders enjoyed breakfast and a post-work party at Lone Tree Brewing Company. Dave was thrilled by the enthusiastic support from residents and local businesses. “Bike to Work Day is my favorite secular holiday!” he celebrated. “I think there’s a great opportunity for us to expand this celebration and use it as a way to highlight multi-modal transportation.”

Quality of life

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Dave’s adventures by bike (left to right): Acadia National Park, the Triple Bypass and Rotterdam

For Dave, bicycling means personal health as well as a healthy community. Despite his active lifestyle, “I’m part of a unique club—I’ve ridden Triple Bypass and had a triple bypass,” Dave laughed.

Jokes aside, Dave rides not only because he loves it, but also to maintain his health. “I have a family history of heart disease. I’ll never cure that, but cycling reduces my risk. As I age, I’d like for my quality of life to keep improving.”

wine-tour-san-ines-valley-wsGiving back

We’re very lucky to have Dave volunteer with us in the Bicycle Colorado office. He’s an amazingly quick learner with great attention to detail, a wonderful attitude and a willingness to do whatever he can to support our advocacy efforts. Thank you, Dave!

If you’d like to give back to Bicycle Colorado (and have a ton of fun at one of the bike community’s most anticipated events!) consider helping us out at VeloSwap on October 22. Sign up here

Want to learn more about bikeability in Lone Tree? Check out a more extensive interview with Dave from the RidgeGate community’s Facebook page.[/fusion_builder_column][/fusion_builder_row][/fusion_builder_container]

Madeline Kreider Carlson

About the Author: Madeline Kreider Carlson

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