Monday, August 3, 2009

Metro bike/ped study documents online

Greater Greater Washington points out that several documents from the Metrorail Station Area Bicycle and Pedestrian Improvements Study, being conducted by Toole Design Group, are now online, including the Existing Bicycle Facilities map.

The map of facilities in Fairfax is interesting. The full length of the Cross County Trail is shown as one of the facilities, and yet at least half of the trail, which is mostly unpaved single-track, is not accessible for commuters. None of the on-road "Preferred" routes from the Fairfax Co Bike Map are included, which seems odd since Toole produced the Fairfax map. These would seem to qualify as Shared Roadway routes even though they aren't currently signed. We weren't able to attend the July 22 presentation on the study, but from the slides there is a reference to a 2006 Bike Facilities Inventory. Let's hope the map is updated based on existing info. Nevertheless, it's encouraging that Metro is investigating bike access beyond the immediate station areas.

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Monday, July 27, 2009

Metro bike/ped access survey

As part of the Metrorail Station Area Bicycle and Pedestrian Improvements Study, Metro is conducting a survey of bicycle and pedestrian users to solicit opinions on how people access stations and suggestions for improving bike/ped access.

This is a good opportunity to let Metro know about the need for more and better bicycle parking at stations, including covered racks. They also need to work with local communities to improve bicycle access beyond the station property limits, something Metro has been reluctant to do in the past. Bike routes between stations and major destinations need to be created. These routes should include wayfinding signs.

Bike stations could be located at many stations to allow customers to use bikes for the last part of their journey. Bike access on Metro trains during rush hour would allow many more people to use their bikes for commuting. This would require better bike facilities on trains.

Link to bike/ped access survey.

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Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Bike access to Metro Stations

Tomorrow, Wednesday, July 22, Metro will hold a public workshop on Metro's Bicycle and Pedestrian Facility Planning Study. This is a chance for bicyclists to provide input on how Metro can improve bike access to their stations. One of the main purposes of the study is to "Address growing bike access to stations and identify future needs for bike facilities". In the past Metro showed little concern for how bicyclists arrived since Metro does not own or control property leading to the stations. However, it's in everyone's best interest to provide better bike access and to improve bike parking at the stations. The meeting will be held from 5:30 - 8:30 p.m. with a presentation at 6:30 p.m. Metro Headquarters — Lobby Meeting Room, 600 5th Street, NW — Washington, DC 20001

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Thursday, May 21, 2009

Commuters Using Alternative Means to Reach Metro Stations

According to the article in today's Post Fairfax section, For More Riders, 'the Bus Is Beautiful': Commuters Leaving Cars at Home To Save the Cost of Parking at Metro, people are increasingly walking, biking and taking the bus to Metro stations instead of driving.

40% of all trips in the U.S. are 2 miles or less. Most of the people driving to Metro parking garages live within a short distance of the station. When the price of parking reached $5, bus, bike and walking became increasingly more attractive:
Robert Allen, 18, a senior at Oakton High School, walks to the Metro station nearly every day from his home in the Circle Woods neighborhood of Fairfax County, on his way to his part-time, after-school bank teller job in Ballston. It's not so much fun in the winter or the rain, he said. But it beats the daily parking charge.

"The parking's, like, five bucks," he said recently. "And anyway, at this time of day, you're not going to get a spot anyway. It's really rare."


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Friday, March 14, 2008

Final Tysons plan being developed

Many people attended the public workshops held to discuss the future of the Tysons Corner area on Feb. 27 & 28. As was noted in an earlier post, most participants said they want to be able to ride bicycles into and throughout Tysons. Without parking for motor vehicles at any of the four planned Metro stations, bicycle access and parking is critical to making Tysons successful in the future.

The Tysons Task Force is now finalizing plans for Tysons. The consultants PB Placemaking and Cambridge Systematics are developing a final preferred alternative that includes a proposed street network. According to the consultants, that street network should: “Include street cross section recommendations that address separated bike and pedestrian lanes. Include a circulation and street design element in the urban design guidelines based on best practices.”

It is critical at this stage of the process that a bicycle circulation network be developed to ensure that the design of the street network allows cyclists to reach Tysons from surrounding neighborhoods and move throughout Tysons safely.

The next chance for public participation will be the public hearings before the Planning Commission and the Board of Supervisors. We will let you know when those date are set. In the meantime, as a member of the task force, we will continue to try to ensure that Tysons becomes a bicycle-friendly place.

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