Important Meetings

13 May

Floyd Avenue Project Meeting

A significant bike and pedestrian project currently under development is the Floyd Avenue bike-walk street.  A meeting that will include presentation and discussion of more detailed plans for that project is being held Monday, May 19 at the Virginia Historical Society on the Boulevard starting at 6:30 p.m.  This could set a really good precedent for installing good infrastructure in the city, so come out and show your support — and offer your critical comments on the design too, of course — especially if you live in the Fan or Museum District.  See rvanews for a bit more detail and background, as well as earlier posts from Bikeable Richmond (there are a bunch — just search “Floyd”).

Kids and parents feeling safe on our streets should be the goal of our master plan. From streetsblog.org.

Master Plan Meeting

A reminder that Bike Walk RVA is teaming up with the city to host a public presentation and discussion of the draft Bicycle Master Plan for the city is happening tomorrow (Wednesday, May 14) at the Carillon in Byrd Park from 6-8 p.m.  More details in this Richmond.com piece; RSVP here. An interactive map of the proposed routes and suggested infrastructure are here.

This is also huge: getting a master plan in place will put the city bike-ped coordinator Jake Helmboldt and the rest of us pushing for a real network of bikeways in a much better position to get funding from the city and get the kind of bike lanes we want.  Even if the you don’t have much to say about the draft, please come and show your support and be part of the conversation.

Initial Thoughts

I’m thrilled that we are a step closer to having a master plan, and theres a lot to like here.  Here are a couple of initial, general thoughts I’ve come up with in looking at the draft:

1) I love the cycle tracks, buffered bike lanes, and bike-walk streets (including Floyd).  This is the kinds of infrastructure that get people who are otherwise worried about riding in traffic out on their bikes.

2) There are too many sharrows (shared lane markings).  I’d like to see more bike-walk streets — which can vary in what they entail depending on the street in question.  Some fairly quiet streets might just have some speed lumps along with sharrows, for example.  The point is, sharrows by themselves do not inspire much confidence in riders who do not have it already.  Anywhere where we do not have separated facilities like bike lanes, we should work toward significant calming of motorized traffic.

3) “Existing” infrastructure should be open to revision.  There are streets that now have sharrows that should really have bike lanes, but in some cases the draft seems to assume they will stay the way they are.

4) When will we revisit this? When will it be done?  The information on the plan so far does not state explicitly when we would revisit this and whether this is a vision for 5, 10, or 20 years.  The Bike Master Plan started out as part of the Richmond Connects Multi-Modal Transportation Plan, and the latter is framed as a 20-year plan.  I think Richmond can and should go beyond what is in this plan by 2034.

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