Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Reston Metro Access Group

FABB is participating in the meetings of the Reston Metro Access Group. The citizen group is working with county staff and a transportation contractor, Vanesse Hangen Brustlin, to plan pedestrian, bicycle, transit, and motor vehicle access to the future Wiehle Ave and Reston Parkway Metro stations. A public meeting was held on March 27, 2007 and 54 community members discussed issues related to accessing the stations.

When asked what was their preferred mode of transportation for accessing the stations, 52.4% said they planned to walk, and 19% said they would bike. When people have a choice, with safe, convenient access, they will walk and bike. This is contrasted to the VHB report on existing transportation conditions around the stations. Based on Census data on commuting patterns, 1% walk. Bicycling isn't even broken out as a separate category, it's lumped in with walking. It also only accounts for commuting trips, not the many other trips that we make in the region, including bicycle trips on the weekends.

Often in discussions of transportation facilities, bicycling and walking are dismissed as fringe activities, and the 1-2% bike/walk commute numbers are used to support the argument. The better figure is the number of people who, given the choice, would walk or bike, not only to work, but for all the other short trips we take in this region. More bikes are sold in the U.S. each year than cars. About 30% of everyone rides a bike during the year. Most people own bikes; they just need better facilities on which to ride.

There will be another public meeting of the Reston Metro Access Group, likely in June. Bicyclists are encouraged to attend. Check the FABB events page or the RMAG page for info about the meeting.

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  Bike to Work Day 2004 at Reston Town Center

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