Monday, December 28, 2015

How to Save Vacant Office Buildings: Bike Lanes and Bikeshare

Executive Blvd office building.
Photo: Washington Post
The Post article In Maryland, a how-to guide for saving an office park looks at the problem of office vacancies in suburban office parks in Virginia and Maryland.

One problem is the inability of tenants being able to walk to nearby destinations. One possible solution is making those trips more bike-friendly and implementing bikesharing. Fairfax Economic Development Authority, are you listening?  (Probably  not; see the EDA Transportation page which has no mention of bicycling.)

From the Post article:
With vacant office space beginning to drain local tax coffers, officials in the Maryland and Virginia suburbs have trained their sights on their distressed office parks with an eye on reinventing them.

Among the more radical ideas are turning obsolete buildings into schools or warehouses. But with the help of a panel of private sector experts, Montgomery County planners recently recommended a series of more incremental improvements for two isolated complexes, Rock Spring and Executive Boulevard, that may provide a playbook for turning such places into locations companies would be interested in leasing again.

Some of the buildings along Executive Boulevard may ultimately be transformed into apartment buildings or hotels, as developers have done to buildings in Wheaton, Silver Spring and other parts of the county. But the panel recommended a series of quicker, less-expensive options, among them adding new signage, bike lanes, bike-sharing stations and turning the lawns and landscaped areas into more accessible park space.

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  Bike to Work Day 2015 at Wiehle Station

  Transportation choices

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