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Bicycling Facilities Planning

As a planning strategy, bicycling – often combined in theory and in practice with strategies to improve pedestrian travel and encourage walkable communities – is commonly divided into the "Three E's": Engineering, Education, and Enforcement. (Some argue that two additional "E's" should be added: Encouragement and Elected officials.) The first "E" refers to physical design/construction projects. These projects include new facilities of various types, or reconstruction and improvements made to existing transportation infrastructure. The second "E" refers to programs – often in schools – which educate and encourage students and citizens about bicycling, its benefits, safe riding techniques, and how to find and use additional resources. The third "E" refers to programs, and sometimes lobbying efforts, designed to create and enforce laws recognizing and protecting cyclists as legitimate roadway users. These programs generally focus on traffic safety.

All three approaches – all three "E's" – work together synergistically and should be implemented simultaneously. However, we will focus in this section on the physical facilities which communities may construct, commonly referred to as "Bikeways". These infrastructure projects provide the physical network on which cyclists (hopefully, educated and informed) will travel. Other reports have defined and classified types of bicycle facilities in detail. Listed below are some of the major types of bicycling infrastructure; more detail on each of these can be found in this document.

  • Bicycle/Multiuse Paths or Trails
  • Bicycle Lanes
  • Bicycle Boulevards
  • Bicycle Marked Routes ("Sharrows")
  • Bicycle Signed Routes
  • Paved Shoulders (Rural areas) and Wide Outside Lane (Urban areas)
  • Bicycle Parking

Although this study focuses on bicycling infrastructure, education and enforcement are also critical parts of bicycle planning. Are there best practices, either within the region or elsewhere, of education and enforcement efforts? What role do you think CMAP should play in bicycling education and enforcement?

 

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