Glenn Kurtz, left, and Rebecca Serna, right, present Mathilde Piard with her Blinkie Award. (Photo by Cameron Adams)

The Atlanta Bicycle Coalition (ABC) handed out its annual Blinkie Awards on Feb. 14 to the people and projects that contributed to city’s ongoing progress towards becoming a bicycle-friendly community. More than 300 attended the event held at Trees Atlanta Kendeda Center.

And the winners are…

Bike-Friendly Elected Official: Keisha Lance Bottoms, District 11 Atlanta City Council. Councilmember Bottoms was instrumental bringing about the Southwest Atlanta Beltline Connector Trail, officially opened in January 2013. The 4.5-mile trail runs along the Eastside, the West End, and the Northside trails. The Southwest portion in District 11 will bring the total permanent trails to almost seven miles throughout the Metro Atlanta Perimeter. In addition, she was honored for her work promoting a healthy, active lifestyle, in keeping with ABC’s goal of creating a healthier, more livable Atlanta by making it safe, convenient, and attractive to ride a bicycle.

The Inaugural Fred Boykin Lifetime Achievement Award: Fred Boykin, Decatur City Commissioner and owner, Bicycle South. Commissioner Boykin has been a dedicated public servant committed to making it safe for kids to bike and walk through the Safe Routes to School initiative. Through his leadership, Decatur schools now support higher rates of biking and walking to school than any other metro Atlanta school system, attracting new residents while helping children stay healthy and active. He is also the owner of Bicycle South, Inc., a Decatur-area business since 1972.

ABC Partner of the Year: Midtown Alliance, for taking a leading role in developing high quality bicycle infrastructure in Midtown, support for active transportation including bicycling, and creative approach to branding Midtown as a place for active and engaged living.

Bike-Friendly Agency Staff: Kathy Zahul (shared with Keith Golden), Georgia Department of Transportation, for building buffered bicycle lanes into the Ponce de Leon safety project following ABC’s Roadway Safety Audit recommending separated bicycle facilities for the corridor. This decision required great vision due to the high volume of cars on the street, and will have even greater impact once access to the Eastside Atlanta BeltLine Trail is complete. In addition, this award recognizes Zahul’s thoughtful approach to targeting state safety funds or the benefit of all, including the upcoming road safety and Complete Streets project on Moreland Avenue in Little Five Points.

Photo by Cameron Adams

Best Media Coverage: Thomas Wheatley, Creative Loafing (Runner up Curbed Atlanta), for continued excellence in tackling urban issues including bicycling.

Cadence Volunteer: Mathilde Piard, for her sustained involvement in nearly every aspect of the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition, expert advice on social media, and ongoing event planning and coordination. Piard has demonstrated her commitment, passion, and enjoyment of volunteering time and again, and has been instrumental in drawing others to the cause.

People’s Choice categories

Favorite Local Bike Shop: Loose Nuts Cycles 

Bike-Friendly Neighborhood: Grant Park

A full list of nominees can be found at atlantabike.org/blinkies14.

Collin Kelley

Collin Kelley has been the editor of Atlanta Intown for two decades and has been a journalist and freelance writer for 35 years. He’s also an award-winning poet and novelist.