Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Patch article on bicycle program funding

Eric Hendry of Vienna Patch wrote a comprehensive article on funding for the bicycle program: Budget Adds More Funding, But Not For Biking. As we noted in an earlier post, there is money for bicycle projects but none for the other activities that are needed for a successful bike program such as encouraging more people to travel by bike, educating bicyclists and motorists, and outreach to employers and others.

We were very encouraged by Supervisor McKay's motion yesterday to look into using the BikeArlington model in Fairfax:
Fairfax County Supervisor Jeff McKay (Lee), who chairs the board's transportation committee, said he was looking for ways to achieve some of the goals of the Fairfax County bicycle plan, and that includes funding.

At Tuesday's meeting, he said Arlington County has done more to encourage biking and its approaches could become a model for Fairfax "now that the state is shedding its transportation responsibilities faster than you can say pothole."

He asked staff to examine how BikeArlington, part of Arlington County Commuter Services, encourages businesses to coax more people to ride bicycles.

The analysis will be presented at a future transportation committee meeting.
Thanks to everyone who contacted the Board. They know there is a great deal of support for better and safer conditions for cyclists in the county. We're optimistic that with the completion of the bicycle plan, and a commitment from the new Transportation Department director to doing more to help cyclists, we will make significant progress in the future.

While we're disappointed by the lack of program funding, it appears there is a renewed effort to accomplish the goals of the program through other means. It's critical that both the Tysons and the Countywide bicycle master plans be approved this year. We think county DOT is committed to that goal. Stay tuned.

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