By David Rosenberg @drose105
The Montgomery County Council sent out a press release that they have unanimously approved the Bicycle Master Plan on Tuesday, Nov. 27. According to the press release, the plan suggests the construction of 1000 miles of bike paths, trails, and lanes. The council’s goal is to make the County a world-class bicycling community.
The Montgomery Planning Board brought together stakeholders, residents of every district in the County, bicycling and transit advocates and members of the business community to provide input and feedback as the plan was developed over several years and inevitably brought the plan back into the mainframe. The plan will also aim to facilitate the creation of supportive infrastructure for bicycling transit, including expanded bicycle parking at transit and commercial centers.
The plan aligns closely with Vision Zero, an initiative adopted by the Council in 2016 which aims to eliminate pedestrian, traffic and severe deaths or injuries on County roadways by 2030. It also includes analytical tools for designing safe, convenient bikeways throughout the County, and promotes the long-term implementation of bicycle-friendly policies and planning.
Council President Hans Riemer said the following in Tuesday’s press release:
“In addition to completing these networks, we need to lower speeds on neighborhood greenway streets, address unsafe trail crossings across the County, and bring the State Highway Administration to the table to make improvements on State highways,” said Council President Hans Riemer. “When fully built out, the network envisioned by the plan will make biking a real option for cyclists of all ages and experiences in their trips for work, shopping, and recreation.”
Riemer also stated, “Advance work on this network is already happening with protected bicycle lane networks in Silver Spring and White Flint and soon coming to Bethesda. In addition to completing these networks, we need to lower speeds on neighborhood greenway streets, address unsafe trail crossings across the County, and bring the State Highway Administration to the table to make improvements on State highways. The plan shows us the way to a world-class bicycling community. Now we need to roll up our sleeves and get it built.”
Riemer thanked Casey Anderson, the Montgomery Planning Board Chair; David Anspacher, planner and project manager for this plan; and the Montgomery County Department of Transportation for all the hard work they did in engaging with the community, assessing the possibilities and bringing together a viable plan. He also thanked Council member Roger Berliner for supporting this and many other initiatives to make the County more bike friendly.
Riemer added, “The Council is really proud of this plan and what it means for our County’s future.”