Years ago, American planners decided to divide bikeways into three types: Class I: Off-road paths (aka bike paths, shared use paths, or multi-use paths) Class II: On-road bike lanes Class III: Shared roadways This categorization implied that off-road paths were superior to bike lanes, and that bike lanes were superior to roads without bike lanes. Maybe that was the thinking at the time. But it’s well accepted now that shared use paths carry risks of their own and are not suitable for all cyclists at all times. So in Montgomery County planners now use the terms “shared use path”, “bike lanes”, and “signed shared roadway” (SSR), respectively. The terms Class I, II, and III aren’t inaccurate, just out of common [...]
The July meeting of MCBAG is this Thursday July 19th at 7 pm in Rockville. The location rotates between Gaithersburg and Rockville. This one’s in Rockville. Agenda is here. Projects that will be discussed: Capital Crescent Trail surface project on Bethesda Avenue (Woodmont Avenue to Wisconsin Avenue). Presented by M-NCPPC ‘s David Anspacher and Neil Braunstein. Executive Blvd shoulders in North Bethesda Woodglen Drive/Edson Lane issues in North Bethesda Clopper Road shared use path in Germantown Germantown bike rack at Germantown Transit Center MEETING DETAILS: Rockville MCBAG meetings are in the tall Executive Office Building, 101 Monroe Street, Rockville. Enter from the lower level entrance off Monroe Street. Ring the buzzer to the left of the door and tell them [...]
Dan Reid wrote this informative post in Greater Greater Washington about the ICC trail, with a special focus on the recently built Rt. 29 segment. That mile-long segment, which runs along 29 from Fairland Road to Briggs Chaney Road, is a great trail though it has limited east-west value (notwithstanding it’s designation as part of the ICC trail) and will probably get no recreational use in any direction. Google Maps doesn’t show the trail on its trail overlay yet, but here’s the alignment.
The Lake Frank trail connector is almost done! [June 25th update: It IS done]. It will connect the Rock Creek Trail (north of Rt. 28) to Lake Frank in Derwood. The paved trail was planned for years but just as it was about to be built, some residents in a nearby neighborhood launched an opposition campaign. They insisted on an alternative route where the trail would be further from their homes but much more expensive and environmentally impactive to build. Fortunately logic prevailed and the trail was approved for construction in the planned location. The trail will eventually be the southernmost segment of the Lake Frank Trail which will follow along the east side of the lake to the Meadowside [...]
The Montgomery County Department of Transportation publishes a resurfacing schedule of upcoming road resurfacing projects. Why is this useful? Because roadway resurfacing (repaving) requires repainting all the lines. White lines. Yellow lines. Dashed lines. It’s a chance to widen lanes, add bike lanes and fix configurations that impact cyclists. On some roads we’ve been chomping at the bit to have MCDOT redo the striping. On these projects MCDOT needs input from cyclists. Many projects are brought up at MCBAG meetings. But sometimes they aren’t. It’s essential to keep an eye on the resurfacing schedule.
The Bethesda Trolley Trail promises to be a great route from the Twinbrook Metro station in Rockville to downtown Bethesda. The existing part of the trail is excellent thanks to the two trail bridges over I-495 and I-270. But it has its problems: 1. The trail fizzles out north of Edson Lane in North Bethesda. This portion is labeled “future trail” on trail maps, although the small green trail signs continue all the way to Twinbrook Metro. Much of it is sidewalks on busy roads lined with shopping center driveways, although there are decent alternatives for those who don’t mind riding in the road. 2. The trail fizzles out south of Charles St. in Bethesda. Much of it is sidewalk [...]
Various gaps need to be filled in on the bike route along Rt. 355 between Tuckerman Lane and Strathmore Ave, and on Strathmore Ave (MD 547) between Rt. 355 and Kenilworth Ave. The gaps consist of either unsuitable sidewalk or marginal shoulder. Here I discuss the gaps and how to fix them. The route serves Metro and is part of a much longer bike route, a 12-mile signed route from Potomac to White Oak. Most of that longer route is on-road, but some consists of off-road paths. Skip to the bottom of this post for a summary of what must be fixed. For the first 200 feet north of the Rt. 355/Tuckerman Lane intersection (i.e. Grosvenor-Strathmore Metro), the route is just a [...]
Montgomery County is deciding how to install bike lanes on Woodglen Drive in North Bethesda (or is it South Rockville?). Woodglen is the site of part of the Bethesda Trolley Trail, which runs in fits and starts from downtown Bethesda to the Twinbrook Metro station in Rockville. The bike lanes would be in addition to the trail, not a replacement for the trail. The entire White Flint area is being rebuilt as part of the county’s ambitious effort to create an urban community centered around White Flint Metro. Bicycling is intended to be a large part of that. See some photos of the existing configuration here. The street is 48 feet wide. The county’s initial design is as follows (from [...]
The Montgomery County Planning Board is holding a public hearing on the draft 2012 Park Recreation and Open Space (PROS) Plan on Thursday May 24, 2012. This plan includes important elements related to hard surface and natural surface trails in the parks. The plan addresses the mission of our parks, priorities, upcoming projects, park budgets, and more. According to the Park and Planning Commission (M-NCPPC), the primary purpose of the Plan is to: provide guidance regarding recreation facility needs in the county for the next 10 years. recommend priorities for important natural and historic/cultural areas in Montgomery County that need to be preserved and interpreted. provide input to area and park master plans regarding the need for public parkland and [...]