Saturday, September 1, 2012

Bicycle superhighways to the suburbs

Bicycle superhighways are being built to the suburbs of Copenhagen to encourage more people to travel by bike. According to this NPR story, In Bike-Friendly Copenhagen, Highways for Cyclists:
Bicycle Superhighway in Copenhagen
Every day, one-third of the people of Copenhagen ride their bikes to work or school. Collectively, they cycle more than 750,000 miles daily, enough to make it to the moon and back. And city officials want even more people to commute, and over longer distances.

So a network of 26 new bike routes, dubbed "the cycling superhighway," is being built to link the surrounding suburbs to Copenhagen.

Lars Gaardhoj, an official with the Copenhagen capital region, says the routes will be straight and direct.

"It will be very fast for people who use their bike," he says. "This is new because traditionally cycle paths have been placed where there is space for them and the cars didn't run. So now the bike is going to challenge the car."
We in Northern Virginia are lucky because the W&OD Trail serves as a sort of bicycle superhighway, a very direct route into the District. We could use more. We need bicycle superhighways from the more populated areas such as Springfield, Annandale, Burke, West Springfield, and along the Route 1 corridor into the District. We need a Bicycle Beltway leading to the many destinations along the Beltway corridor.

How much would this cost?
Each mile of bike highway will cost about $1 million. The project is to be financed by the city of Copenhagen and 21 local governments. And in a country where both right- and left-leaning politicians regularly ride bikes to work, it has bilateral support.
Having bilateral support is important; bicycling should not be a partisan issue but it has become one in this country. Everyone needs to realize the potential for using bicycles in Fairfax, if we have first class bike facilities. Just think how many more people would travel by bike if we had more facilities like the W&OD Trail, which is often overcrowded with cyclists most weekends.

Having a bicycle-friendly community doesn't just happen; it takes political will, financial support, and encouragement, all of which have made Copenhagen and other European cities places where bikes are an integrated part of their transportation networks.

To see how we can transform Fairfax into a more bicycle-friendly place, be sure to attend the Fairfax Bike Summit on Saturday, October 27 at GMU. Register online for free.

Labels: , , ,


Post a Comment

Contact FABB via email:

Subscribe to the
FABB e-newsletter

Subscribe to posts:
[Atom 1.0] or [RSS 2.0]

  Bike to Work Day 2015 at Wiehle Station

  Transportation choices

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?