Jan 182014
 

County Councilmembers Roger Berliner and Hans Riemer have introduced a council bill to change county road standards in urban areas to better serve pedestrians and bicyclists.  Bill 33-13 seeks to 1) reduce car speeds, thereby making pedestrians and bicyclists safer, 2) stipulate certain road features to improve pedestrian safety and access, especially at crosswalks, and 3) better accommodate new technology including bike sharing.  Roger Berliner briefly summarizes the bill here. Whenever roads are rebuilt or in some cases resurfaced, engineers can choose from a toolkit of improvements designed to make urban areas safer for biking and walking.  The tools include everything from curb extensions (aka bulbouts or neckdowns) that make crosswalks shorter to HAWK beacons that blink when a pedestrian [...]

Mar 062013
 
CaBi graphic

My daughter Allison created this using Tagxedo. A transparent version is here. Try Capital Bikeshare yourself. You’ll like it!

 Posted by at 1:38 am on Mar 6, 2013  Comments Off
Feb 182013
 
Montgomery County Sierra Club's excellent bike statement

The Montgomery County Sierra Club has just published a superb bike statement outlining changes needed to support biking in the county.  A printable version (as of Jan. 28 2013) is here. These are the six points made in the 5-page statement (my paraphrasing): Make a complete network: The statement recommends connecting bike lanes to major destinations and completing facilities such as the Bethesda Trolley Trail, Capital Crescent Trail, ICC Trail and routes parallel to arterials like Georgia Ave. Be context-appropriate: It recommends providing a context-appropriate variety of facilities such as bike lanes, sharrows, cycle tracks, bicycle boulevards and grade-separated trails. Provide comfort: It recommends providing multiple route options, wayfinding signs, secure bike parking, meeting plazas and good trail maintenance. Safety: [...]

 Posted by at 11:41 am on Feb 18, 2013  Comments Off
Feb 112013
 
Maryland's mandatory helmet law a disaster for biking

A bill before the Maryland House of Delegates would require everyone riding a bike to wear a helmet, no matter how short their trip.    If the bill passes, it would probably kill BikeShare and do a great deal to discourage cycling.  Capital BikeShare, now coming to Montgomery County, is inducing the county to invest in more bike infrastructure and will allow many more bike trips. The county’s transit oriented communities (including Bicycle and Pedestrian Priority Areas designated by the state) rely on bicycling and walking to reduce traffic.  But this bill would undermine it all. Update on April 25 2013: The bill did not pass. Do Maryland legislators really think they know more about bicycling than the Danish and [...]

Oct 182012
 
WABA and MoBike's recommendations to support BikeShare

WABA and MoBike just presented their list of recommendations of needed bike improvements in Bethesda, Silver Spring, Takoma Park and Friendship Heights to help BikeShare fulfill its tremendous promise in Montgomery County.   The improvements are designed to encourage people to use bikes as transportation.  They include bike lanes, intersection changes, road diets (lane or parking removal), sharrows (shared lane markings) and off-road paths.  Bike lanes may be positioned next to traffic (traditional bike lanes) or separated from traffic (buffered bike lanes or cycle tracks). Sharrows are a way to make existing travel lanes more hospitable to bikes, and are often accompanied by “Bikes May Use Full Lane” signs.  The recommendations also include finishing key transportation trails that have been left [...]

 Posted by at 1:37 pm on Oct 18, 2012  Comments Off
Oct 112012
 

Montgomery County Councilmember Nancy Floreen has asked the Maryland Department of Transportation to make changes to various state roads to better support bike sharing, which is coming to the county soon. Her letter is here.  She specifically requests bike lanes on Georgia Avenue and Colesville Road in downtown Silver Spring: [To support bikesharing] I encourage MDOT to implement wherever feasible these improvements endorsed by the Washington Area Bicyclist Association: Buffered bike lanes–where sufficient space exists, provide buffered space between the bicycle travel space and vehicular travel space (or the “door zone” of the vehicle); Non-buffered bike lanes—where space is available, provide a bike lane with a minimum width of five feet, in keeping with national engineering standards; Shared use markings [...]

 Posted by at 11:19 am on Oct 11, 2012  Comments Off
May 092012
 

In case you didn’t already know, the county’s request for bikeshare funding from the state was approved! According to the Montgomery Gazette: The Maryland Department of Transportation has granted Montgomery County’s Department of Transportation $1.008 million for a proposed bikeshare program in the downcounty areas of Friendship Heights, Bethesda, Medical Center, Takoma Park and Silver Spring. In addition, during its regular session, the Maryland legislature approved a bill that will provide a $250,000 bond for the construction and capital equipment of the downcounty bikeshare program. The grant and bond will help pay for a portion of the construction and equipment costs for 50 bikeshare docking stations and 350 bikes, according to the county. The total cost for stations and bikes [...]

 Posted by at 11:49 pm on May 9, 2012  Comments Off
Feb 022012
 

The Washington Post has a couple good articles on BikeShare today. The article “Capital Bikeshare program looks to spread into the Washington suburbs” covers the coming of BikeShare to Montgomery County and other suburbs.  The plan is to expand BikeShare into several downcounty communities as well as the Rockville/Shady Grove area: By summertime, the bikes should be rolling through the streets of Rockville and Alexandria as the popular Capital Bikeshare program expands into several outer Washington communities. If grant applications come through, they might also appear in the inner-ring areas of Bethesda, Silver Spring, Takoma Park, Friendship Heights and Forest Glen. Which communities are getting stations is actually TBD, except Rockville which is funded already.   Grant money still has not [...]

 Posted by at 1:55 pm on Feb 2, 2012  Comments Off
Jan 172012
 
County asks the state for BikeShare funds

Montgomery County has asked the State of Maryland to provide a $1 million grant to expand Capital BikeShare into Bethesda and Silver Spring and surrounding areas.   The county expects to know by “early 2012″ whether the grant is approved. According to the county press release: The [grant] will fund 29 docking stations and 204 bikes between the Beltway and the District of Columbia border, including Friendship Heights (Chevy Chase), Bethesda, the Medical Center Metro area, Takoma Park and Silver Spring. The county has said its ultimate plan is to provide 50 stations with 400 bikes downcounty and another 20 stations with 200 in the Rockville/Shady Grove area. Also in the press release: The new bikesharing application requests 80 percent grant [...]

 Posted by at 2:36 am on Jan 17, 2012  Comments Off
Jan 012012
 

Links in this entry were updated Feb. 20, 2014; Rockville links tend to get out of date. The City of Rockville is updating its 2004 Bikeway Master Plan. For more information see the information page regarding the update. As part of this effort, Rockville has convened a citizens’ work group to guide planners as they revise the plan (I’m a member of the group).  They’ve also engaged Toole Design to assist with the revision.  Toole is the conulting firm based in Laurel Silver Spring that specializes in bikeway planning and design. The city has a strong record of bikeway planning.  The 2004 bikeway plan was well-conceived, and unlike many jurisdictions, Rockville actually implements the recommendations in its plans within a [...]