For bike safety awareness, we’re on the stick

Neighbor, bike enthusiast and all-around-good-guy Ed Sergeant created, donated and planted the new Sign Stick at the Garden.

Neighbor, bike enthusiast and all-around-good-guy Ed Sergeant created, donated and planted the new Sign Stick at the Garden.

If you’ve been in or around the Garden lately, you might have noticed an unusual new “sculpture” – especially if you’ve seen it glowing at night.

You might be wondering what it is and from where it came. It does look a bit futuristic.

The Sign Stick, to promote bike safety awareness and encourage traffic to slow down,  is the brainchild and creation of architect and area resident Ed Sergeant. By day, Ed works for Fennell Purify Architects, but by night (and weekends), he’s an intrepid inventor and volunteer.

He created the Sign Stick as part of the Safe Street Project, along with the recent lane revisions, which, he tells us, will be replicated.

“The same lane revision scheme used for Main is in the process of being implemented on several other streets in Little Rock as part of the Bike Master Plan.” That’s excellent news.

 

This was his first freestanding artistic piece, Ed says, though “the high modern materials are similar to the stainless steel and glass tables I have designed.”

But he sounds like a practiced artist when describing his work.

“The sustainable concept ‘announces’ itself, not allowing the passer by to figure it out on his own. Clear like the air, the stick catches and refracts light, recharging itself by day using the clean energy of the sun, then lighting itself at night.”

After all, he adds, “Energy is abundant; its source should have a minimal impact upon the environment.”

We love that kind of thinking.

The QR code (the square of black and white squiggles) links to a video about biking that will rotate over time. Stop and try it with your cell phone QR reader. (Don’t have one? It’s an easy free download – and they’re fun to check out.)

Ed has plans to make more sticks for other locations. We were just lucky enough to get the first one. In addition to looking cool, he hopes it serves as an agent for change.

“As a participatory art piece, I hope that the Stick is successful in engaging the passer to read the message/scan the QR/walk, bike, ride the street,” he says. For the environment, his hopes are that “Main Street will become a prototype for much more of the city.

“Information and education can have a sizeable effect upon decarbonization of our cities.”

We hope so. And we’re so glad we scored the first one!

 

The Sign Stick at night is sure to catch your eye.

The Sign Stick at night is sure to catch your eye.

 

One Response to For bike safety awareness, we’re on the stick

  1. James says:

    Wow! that’s a cool stick.. Bike safety is super improtant..

    I ride my bicycle to get to work and to get home from work — sixteen miles a day, five days a week, year-round. I ride in rain, in snow and on ice (both smooth-polished puddles and choppy re-frozen slush). Though my commute is mostly rural, every day I deal with car doors swinging open and intersections blocked by cars whose drivers either never saw me or failed to correctly judge my speed. I ride fast, like a racer, because I enjoy riding my bicycle. Riding fast helps me stay alert, and others have emphasized how important it is for cyclists to stay constantly alert. I depend on cycling for exercise, and I feel good about not driving a car. But most of all I cherish the opportunities to be outside in all weather, in all seasons. Riding in a couple of inches of fresh snow can be delightful. Listening to the changing sound of my studded snow tires as i cross iced pavement engages my attention deeply in something that, on dry summer roads, is actually pretty boring. There are risks in riding the way I ride in the conditions I ride in, but I feel that I have a lot of control over the consequences of something going wrong. I know that a careless driver yacking on a cell phone could kill me at any instant. Some even seem to be trying to. But mostly I just adapt to the conditions, and, so far (almost 54 years), I have been neither killed nor injured while cycling. What I am saying is that, for me, the question is not: How safe is cycling? It is: How could I be my self without it?

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