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Old 10-11-06, 10:59 AM   #1
kf5nd
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Texas Intercity Bike Route Meeting

ANNOUNCEMENT

Giddings Economic Development Corporation Workshop
Old Texas Highway 20 Intercity Bike Route Development
Friday, November 17, 2006 – 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Giddings Public Library and Cultural Center
276 North Orange Street (FM 141)
Giddings, Texas


The Giddings Economic Development Corporation (GEDC) will partner with the Texas Bicycle Coalition to host a one-day workshop to explore an intercity bicycle route as the first-stage development of an experiential tourism/active-living corridor encompassing Brenham, Giddings, Elgin, and other communities between Houston and Austin.


Joyce Bise, Director, and Fay Iselt, Assistant Director, of GEDC, will conduct the workshop at the Giddings Public Library & Cultural Center on Friday, November 17, 2006 (8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.) for elected and other public officials and community leaders along the corridor.


The goal of the workshop will be to explore the use of existing city, county and state roads along the now-decommissioned Old Texas Highway 20 (U.S. Highway 290’s predecessor of the 1920’s) as a 180-mile signed bicycle tourism route on existing public roads connecting Brenham, Giddings and Elgin with each other as well as with the downtowns of Houston and Austin.


In 2005, the Texas Legislature passed the Bicycle Tourism Trails bill. This update to Section 201.9025 of the Texas Transportation Code directs TxDOT, Texas Parks and Wildlife Department and the Governor’s office of Economic Development and Tourism to work together to identify potential bicycle tourism routes and trails. The TxDOT Bicycle Advisory Committee is tasked with making recommendations to the Texas Transportation Commission on the development of a statewide network of bicycle tourism routes that “shall reflect the geography, scenery, history, and cultural diversity of this state.”


In the rural counties between Houston and Austin, most of the Old Texas 20 route (75%) survives as a well-connected series of lightly-traveled county roads. The route is perfect for visiting bicyclists out for all-day or multi-day tours as well as local resident riders exercising and enjoying a break out in the fresh air of the nearby countryside. A few miles of gravel segments need to be paved to provide complete bicycle connectivity.


Please contact Joyce Bise at jmbise@giddings.net or (979) 540-2720, or Fay Iselt at fay@giddings.net or (979) 540-2721 for more information. Additional GEDC information is at www.giddingsedc.com. TBC contact is Mark Stine at mark@biketexas.org or (512) 476-7433. The TBC website is www.biketexas.org.
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Old 10-13-06, 08:10 AM   #2
Platy
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An Old Hwy 20 bike route would be a wonderful thing. Unlike the Hill Country further to the west, the terrain between Houston and Austin is flat enough to be managed by many recreational cyclists.

I could see bed & breakfast operations catering to cyclists popping up along an Old Hwy 20 route. I read somewhere (sorry, no citation) that around 15% of the tourism income in towns along the Longleaf Trace in Mississippi comes from bike tourism.

Elgin, Brenham and Giddings are interesting places for short visits. There also may be smaller near-ghost towns along the route of historical interest. The existing roads between Houston and Austin are not very bikeable and most of them take you out of the way you would want to go.

However I couldn't find anything about the project on the GEDC website.
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Old 10-13-06, 09:11 AM   #3
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Wow this now makes two long distance systems that are "in the works" for Texas. Thanks for the heads up Kf5nd!!!
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Old 10-13-06, 11:15 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SpiderMike
Wow this now makes two long distance systems that are "in the works" for Texas. Thanks for the heads up Kf5nd!!!
Mike,

What is the second project you mention? I can't find anything on either one on the BikeTexas website ....

B'Dog
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Old 10-13-06, 12:17 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by BubbaDog
Mike,

What is the second project you mention? I can't find anything on either one on the BikeTexas website ....

B'Dog
Sorry, guess I should have mentioned more. It is over in the Sam Houston National Forest. Ghorba is working on plans to help turn the Lone Star Hiking Trail into a multi use trail. 129 miles of singletrack sounds so sweet.

http://www.ghorba.org/trail-updates/...ws-august-2006
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