EDISON, NJ (May 22, 2024)–The New Jersey Bike & Walk Coalition recognized community achievements in pedestrian, bicycle and street safety Saturday with the presentation of the 2024 Marty Epstein Advocacy Awards at the NJBWC’s annual NJ Bike & Walk Summit at Middlesex College in Edison.


The awards were presented to The City of Hoboken; Cape May County; and HudCoStreets. The award, named for long-time NJBWC member and bicycling advocate Marty Epstein, recognizes outstanding achievements in advancing the goals and mission of  NJBWC.


“This year’s honorees are making their communities safer, healthier and more liveable for their residents, and are improving accessibility and sustainability,” said NJBWC Executive Director Debra Kagan. “We created these awards to honor Marty and his advocacy, and we know he would be thrilled to see the remarkable work being done by the awardees.  They are showing the rest of New Jersey what is possible,” Kagan said. 


The City of Hoboken

The City of Hoboken was recognized for reaching the major milestone of achieving seven consecutive years without a traffic-related death. Following Mayor Ravi Bhalla’s 2019 executive order designating Hoboken as a Vision Zero city, in 2021 the Hoboken City Council adopted the Vision Zero Action Plan, with a goal to eliminate traffic-related deaths and injuries by 2030. Safety improvements have included: lowering the town speed limit to 20 mph, and 15mph in school zones; daylighting 31 percent of intersections and adding curb extensions and multi-way stops. Hoboken has provided a successful model on how to create safe streets, not only for New Jersey, but for the country.


Accepting the Awards for the City of Hoboken: Ryan Sharp P.P., AICP Director, Transportation and Parking – City of Hoboken


Cape May County 

Cape May County was recognized for creating an outstanding example of a safe, accessible, active transportation network of dedicated bicycle and pedestrian trails and pathways.

This still-growing web of active transportation routes includes a17.2-mile Regional Bike Path, and dedicated bicycle lanes that connect vital community assets such as the Cape May Ferry terminal, the barrier islands, the Atlantic Cape Community College, and the Cape May County Park & Zoo. To date, the Cape May County Open Spaces Program has provided more than $8.5 million to fund partnerships with local municipalities to grow the network. Future projects in the works include a plan to connect the trail network to the Atlantic County Trail system, with the ultimate goal of providing a safe bicycle route connecting Philadelphia to Cape May.


Accepting the award on Behalf of Cape May County: Jennifer Marandino Executive Director, SJTPO, Jenna Mongnan, Assistant Planner, SJTPO



A coalition of groups and individuals, HudCoStreets advocates for safe, equitable, and sustainable transportation infrastructure in Hudson County. It is the first county-wide complete streets advocacy organization in New Jersey and a model for organizing local groups to coordinate and work on county-wide issues together. HudCoStreets advocated for Hudson County to apply for a federal Vision Zero Action Plan grant, and now sits on the Vision Zero Task Force. In collaboration with other nonprofits, HudCoStreets advocates for sound transportation policies, including the “Fund NJ Transit Campaign,” the “Target Zero Commission Bill campaign,” and the “Turnpike Trap” campaign. This award recognizes the work of HudCoStreets leaders:

●      Emmanuelle Morgen, Executive Director

●      Johan Andrade, President, Bike North Bergen, President

●      Talya Schwartz, VP  – SafeStreets JC, President

●      Matthew Graham, Treasurer,  – Bici UC, President

●      Ryan Williams, Secretary,  – Bike JC, Secretary

●      James Vance, Trustee,  – Fund for a Better Waterfront, President

●      James Lee, Trustee  – SafeStreets JC, Trustee

●      Chris Adair, Trustee –  Bike Hoboken, President

●      Ayla Schermer, Trustee,  – Bike JC, President

●      Tony Borelli, Trustee,  – Bike JC, Vice President

●      Beatriz Bofill, Trustee – Bike JC, Treasurer

Pedestrian and cyclist deaths have been rising steadily for more than a decade in the United States, reaching a record high in 2022. While traffic fatalities saw a decline in 2023, New Jersey saw 608 fatalities– with pedestrian and cyclist deaths accounting for more than 30 percent of all traffic fatalities. As of May 2024, year- to-date fatalities across the state are up by 23 percent, and 80 pedestrians and cyclists have been killed in traffic violence.


About the New Jersey Bike & Walk Summit

The Summit is New Jersey’s premiere conference for street safety, pedestrian and bicycling advocates; urban planning, transportation and infrastructure professionals; elected and government officials; environmental, climate change and open space activists; and biking and hiking enthusiasts. This year’s keynote speakers were Barkha Patel, Director of Infrastructure for The City of Jersey City; Shawn M. LaTourette, NJDEP Commissioner; and Beth Obsorne, Director of Transportation for America. 


About the New Jersey Bike Walk Coalition

The New Jersey Bike & Walk Coalition is New Jersey’s only state-wide organization for bicyclists and pedestrians, and acts as a collective voice for everyone who believes that a safer, more rideable and walkable New Jersey means a more livable, equitable, and sustainable New Jersey. It is recognized by both the League of American Bicyclists and the Alliance for Biking & Walking as the state bicycle and pedestrian advocacy organization for New Jersey.

NJBWC’s projects and initiatives include the Annual NJ Bike & Walk Summit, Streets Are For Everyone (SAFE) Network; the passage of New Jersey’s Safe Passing law and the Safe Passing Resource Center;; the development and expansion of multi-use trails, including the Essex-Hudson Greenway; the establishment of public bicycle depots in Montclair, Bloomfield, Elizabeth and Summit, and safe bicycling education.

The NJBWC is dedicated to protecting the rights and safety of new jersey bicyclists and walkers; promoting bicycling and walking for fun, fitness, and transportation; educating bicyclists, walkers, and drivers about our rights and responsibilities; and connecting our communities with a smarter transportation system.

Contact: Debra Kagan, Executive Director: kagan@njbwc.org

Follow the NJ Bike & Walk Coalition: 


Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/NJbikewalkcoalition/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/njbikewalk

Twitter: https://twitter.com/njbikewalk

You Tube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQbvKtJb1pf3X61-Gn8NMZg



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