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Old 10-22-08, 12:28 PM   #1
bikinpolitico
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Making bike commuting better in Austin (xpost from commuting)

Currently, the City of Austin is updating its Bike Plan to adapt to current needs. Rising fuel costs, global warming, and an economic downturn have caused a record number of Austinites to turn to cycling to meet many of their transportation needs. Unfortunately, Austinís infrastructure has not kept up with this demand forcing cars and bikes to share the same road space, at times in dangerous ways.

In fact, a recent report produced by the City of Austin Street Smarts Task Force found that only 1/3rd of the facilities proposed in the last plan adopted in 1996 have actually been completed.

A group of local cyclists has started a petition to the Austin City Council to ask that the new plan have clear time lines for complete implementation as well as key infrastructure.

You can find out more about the plan and sign the petition at AustinBikePlan.org.

So all you Austin cyclists out there, are you happy with the bike facilities in our city? What would make them better.

This petition calls for cross town bike ways or bike boulevards and no parking in bike lanes? Is this the ticket to more people biking?
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Old 10-22-08, 12:55 PM   #2
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As an aside, 1/3rd completed seems decent...not that more can't be done, but, I'm actually somewhat impressed...yes, 12 years, I understand...but in lots of other places and contexts, I think 1/3rd is pretty darn good.

I'm not sure of the ticket to create more cycling. But, I will say that I would like a few more bike lanes if possible and somehow -- not sure how -- a way to feel a bit safer even in those places that do have bike lanes (again, not sure how this could be reasonably done -- no parking might do it, but, I am mostly referring to situations where there are no cars parked in the bike lanes).
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Old 10-22-08, 01:05 PM   #3
bikinpolitico
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I'm sorry, but 1/3rd in twelve years is crap.

First off, waiting twelve years to review the plan is not acceptable. Do we wait 12 years to review road plans? Bus routes? I moved to Austin 16 years ago, and this city is incredibly different from when I arrived (and nearly twice the population.)

Secondly, the idea behind timelines is to come up with a plan that can actually be accomplished. Without some way of holding the City accountable to a time line, the plan becomes wild eye dreams or pandering to the cycling community. I'd rather have a modest plan completed than a pie in the sky plan than never comes to fruition.
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