Interesting piece by Mike Martz on the front of the T-D today about bike/pedestrian infrastructure in Central Virginia. Among the eye-opening statistics in the article: the city of Richmond, Chesterfield and Hanover counties have a grand total of 18.5 miles of dedicated bike lanes. That is rather pitiful.
“The streets that have bike lanes are few and far between,” states the report by Richmond Sports Backers, which documented 18.25 miles of bike lanes in the city and counties of Chesterfield and Hanover. “This random use of bike lanes has had little impact on bike usage due to the lack of a network connecting bike lanes and trails to allow for continuous safe riding conditions.”
Sports Backers says what is missing is a master plan for the city and surrounding counties to build the infrastructure of bike lanes, paved and unpaved off-road trails, neighborhood byways, and marked “sharrow” lanes to make cycling a reliable and safe transportation alternative.
“It has to be a coordinated effort,” said Max Hepp-Buchanan, who was hired last month as director of Sports Backers’ Bike Walk RVA advocacy program. “You don’t want a bike lane that just drops off when it hits the county limits.”