NYC DOT found that protected bikeways had a significant positive impact on local business strength. After the construction of a protected bicycle lane on 9th Avenue, local businesses saw a 49% increase in retail sales. In comparison, local businesses throughout Manhattan only saw a 3% increase in retail sales.
Here is a great note I recieved (shared with permission)
Hello Mr Wojcik,
I want to thank you for your recent support of Complete Streets and ensuring Rochester mainatins equitable access to walking and biking infrastructure. I just wanted to share my note to my council member and two resources you may already know about, but could be helpful for future council discussion.
This video was developed because communities were wondering how to replicate Rochesters policy. How unfortunate that now we are not living up the reputation of being leaders. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eZVDDwO1eho
Again thank you so much for championing active living efforts and for thinking whats best for the city in the long term. We cannot just bend to the wills of business leaders whenever it impacts their pocketbooks, thats why we have elected officials like you to ensure equity.
Most people know that I am a champion for pedestrians and bikes. There are many good reasons to support biking in general. There are the very real health benefits, there is the reduction in congestion and pollution, there is the economic empowerment of not having to rely on a car. What many don’t realize is that biking is also serious business for a community.
The city council will be discussing the “Uptown” project (2nd Street West of US 52) at a Committee of the Whole meeting on February 20th. The plan that will be brought forth is a result of a number of compromises. It does not represent what I myself would have designed, what residential neighbors would have designed, what public works engineers would have designed, not what businesses in the area would have designed. It is a true compromise in design. Read the rest of this entry »
A general need to improve urban bike infrastructure has become increasingly evident. As Emily Badger recently reported, dedicated bikes lanes cut bike-related injuries in half, and protected lanes drop the risk by 90 percent. In its master plan, Minneapolis intends to add 183 miles of bikeway in the coming years, and to bring all residents within a half mile of a bike lane by 2020.
Bicyclists played a role in 59 percent of recorded bike/car collisions: the most common problems being a failure to yield (13 percent) and disregarding a traffic signal (13 percent). Drivers, meanwhile, contributed to 64 percent of accidents, most commonly (32 percent) through a failure to yield themselves. (The figures exceed 100 percent because each party can have some blame in a collision.)
Here is a great article from Streets MN on why the 4 to 3 road diet makes sense. While this is controversial, it is clearly good policy for those willing to study the facts. We recently did this on 19th Street NW, and will do it on part of 2nd street SW this year. The city council voted 4-3 to override staff and not do it on 16th street which was at best a dumb decision.
Elton Hills Drive, 16th Street South, 4th St. SE, and 3rd Ave SE are perfect examples of places where we should do this if we can muster the political backbone.
For any 4-lane street under about 20,000 cars per day, cities should re-stripe the street to have one traffic lane in each direction, a center turn lane, and improved pedestrian and bicycling space. The costs of doing this are minimal, but the benefits for cities and the people who live in them are immense.
Construction will soon begin on the next addition to Rochester’s alternate transportation system. The next bridge will cross Valleyhigh drive near the trail head for the Douglas Trail. The Douglas Trail is the most used trail in the MN state system. This bridge is the latest safety improvement connecting Rochester’s vast NW neighborhoods to downtown.
We had estimated that bridge and approaches would cost $2.51 million, but the actual cost came in$2.11 million. The funding source for the project is the constitutional sales tax, Federal Enhancement funds, and Municipal State Aid Funds. No city levy funds will be used for this project.
In an unrelated bike safety story. Look for significant safety improvements to the trail crossing of 2nd Street SW at West Circle Drive. If the sales tax passes, 2nd street will be rebuilt between Highway 52 and West Circle Drive.
The Bicycle masterplan will receive a hearing in front of the Rochester Planning & Zoning Board on May 23rd at 7 PM (the meeting is at the government center and is typically in the council chambers). If you care about these issues, plan on showing up and speaking.
Minnesota has over 1500 jobs in the bike industry, 350 businesses, and 144 million in annual revenue.
Biking / Walking in MN receives biking receives 1.5% of Federal funding, represents 12% of all trips, and 9% of all fatalities.
The percentage of trips traveled by walking / biking is higher in cities and increasing.
The cost of the entire bike masterplan is less that the Elk Run intersection.
The cost of the entire bike masterplan is about 2.5% of total 2040 infrastructure spending. (per Phil Wheeler)
“Gas Tax” revenues fund less than 2% of transportation infrastructure in Minnesota.
The other 98+% comes from other sources.
40% of Minnesotans do not drive.
Bike paths and bike lanes serve different users.
I want more safe routes for recreational and commuting bikers and fewer memorial bike rides.
Edit: More data from Phil Wheeler:
Michael – My estimate of 2.5% of cost is high. For the 25 year period covered in the Long Range Transportation Plan, the $31M for bike infrastructure would represent 2% of revenues and 1.3% of total transportation system needs.
Citywide, bicycle and pedestrian commuting in the latest 5-year ACS data sums to 4% (3.3% for walking, 0.7% biking), about equal to transit’s 4.2%. If the 2,190 people now commuting by biking or walking were to each need a parking space in a ramp, we would need to spend $48,200,000 to accommodate them. Of course, not all of them work downtown and not all of them would park in a ramp, but it is still a large number. – Phil
Wayfinding on our trails can be very difficult for visitors. This should help.
Please see the web site below to find out about wayfinding signs and QR codes. It has current edition of e-newsletter from Olmsted County to inform Statewide Health Improvement Program (SHIP) activities. Just a reminder May is National Bike Month. Thanks