Today’s Headlines

  • Kansas City Residents Hopeful Cultural Arts Area Will Become More Ped Friendly (KCBusJrnl)
  • Troy’s Mayor Touts Recent Ped Bridge, Upcoming Street Improvements to Local Leaders (LincolnCntyJrnl)
  • New and Improved Missouri State Bike Maps Now Available (MoDOT)
  • Maryville Continues to Upgrade Its Speeding Enforcement Equipment (KMALand)
  • Can a Street’s Design Be Democratic? (Gehl)
  • The Case Against the Proposed London “Underline” for Cyclists (Treehugger)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

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via MoBikeFed Cycling News, Tips, Advocacy Alerts

Blast From the Past: Why Missouri River Bike/Ped Bridge at Jefferson City Was So Important

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Back at the groundbreaking for the Pat Jones Bike/Ped Path over the Missouri River at Jefferson City in 2010, blogger Julianna Schroeder gave her impressions about why the new bike/ped connection across the river was so important--lessons that are still worth thinking about whenever we consider a major river bridge in Missouri:This morning was the groundbreaking ceremony for the long-awaited pedestrian addition to the Missouri River Bridge here at Jefferson City. . .The bi-directional bike/ped path on the Jefferson City Bridge from the early 2000s through construction of the new path in 2011. Prior to the early 2000s, bike/ped crossing of the bridge was even more harrowing.It advances tourism in Jefferson City. It advances the connection of the Katy Trail State Park with neighboring communities. It advances safety for bicyclists and pedestrians as well as for the over 50,000 vehicle drivers that cross the river here each day.In order to appreciate what we’re getting, you have to know what we have now. Right now, there are two bridges crossing the river—the one on the west is for southbound traffic and the one on the east is for northbound. When they built the second of these two bridges (the northbound one), back in 1991, they didn’t take possible pedestrian or bicycle traffic into account.Meanwhile, also twenty years ago, the Katy Trail State Park was launched. Indeed, they’re celebrating this rails-to-trails park’s twentieth anniversary this month! It follows the old MKT railroad line from St. Charles clear to Clinton, Missouri. . . .So a problem arose: Even though the city built a nice bike trail connecting the cross-state Katy Trail to a point nearer to the Missouri River Bridge, bicyclists had hell to go through before getting across the river to Jeff City proper.And that’s bad for tourism! And it’s dangerous, any way you slice it. The temporary solution has been to add a “bike lane” to the northbound (wider) bridge. But . . . that lane must function for bicyclists traveling both directions.The entire article is an excellent summary of the reason the Pat Jones Bike/Ped Path across the Missouri River at Jefferson City is so important.Local leaders and advocates joined state agencies and statewide advocacy groups (including MoBikeFed) in a campaign over two decades to build support, raise funds for, and finally design the bike/ped path on the bridge that was finally completed and opened in 2011.Photos in the article show just how bad the bridge crossing was for people who walk and bicycle--and that (very bad) situation was actually an IMPROVEMENT over the even worse river crossing situation that was in place before the early 2000s.How the bridge impacted bicycling, walking, and trails in Jefferson CityIt is interesting to note how many of the next steps we suggested for Jefferson City when the brige opened have happened since the new bike/ped path on the bridge opened in 2011:X Adoption of a city Complete Streets policyX Creation of citywide on-street bicycle planX Citywide bicycle mapBicycle education for adults and as a regular part of school instructionX Create a Bicycle/Pedestrian Advisory Committee to advise the city on bicycle and pedestrian related policy, plans, and projectsJefferson City Missouri River Bridge - Bike/Ped Crossing today (opened 2011)X Works towards and then apply for Bicycle Friendly Community status; set specific time-specific goals for reaching Hon. Mention, Bronze, Silver, Gold, and Platinimum BFC levels.A city-wide, comprehensive Safe Routes to School plan to help encourage more children to bicycle and walk to school and provide the sidewalks, bike lanes, trails, and other routes neededDedicate a certain percentage of public works funding to bicycle and pedestrian projects (often just 1% or 2% for bicycle projects and 3-5% for pedestrian projects makes a huge difference over time)X Continue to expand and connect the city's greenways systemGoals that have been accomplished, or where significant progress has been made  since 2011 are marked with an "X".  This represents really amazing progress for bicycling, walking, and trails in Jefferson City, with much more to come in the near future.The progress isn't just because of the bridge, or because of advocacy by local citizens, MoBikeFed and our members, and our allies.  Local city staff and elected leaders, and local citizens and businesses, and stepped up in a big way to support better bicycling, walking, and trails in Jefferson City--and as a result, the city has made major progress in recent years.But it is hard to deny that when a major asset like the Missouri River bike/ped path at Jefferson City comes online, it really lights a fire under the city and the citizens, who want to make the entire city live up to the potential created by the bike/ped river crossing.That means making the entire city bike/ped friendly, and also connecting the entire community to the Katy Trail--and perhaps soon to the Rock Island Trail as well.Major river bridges in Missouri - and why we spend considerable time and effort to support more, better, safer access across major barriers for people who walk and bicycleThat is one reason we spend a considerable amount of time and work advocating for major projects like bike/ped/trails river bridges. These projects help people who walk and bicycle travel safely over major barriers.  But in addition, they inspire communities and leaders to make complete connections--to make the bicycle, pedestrian, and trails system in the entire community and region live up to its promise.Right now, MoBikeFed is working with MoDOT and community leaders to set a direction on six major river bridges that are under construction, under consideration, or recently completed:Champ Clarke Mississippi River Bridge at Louisiana, MO (under construction) - this bridge will be built with dual 10-foot shoulders, which will be a boon for the thousands of bicyclists who travel across the bridge every year, and also allow some limited pedestrian traffic to destinations immediately on either side of the river.  We are disappointed the MoDOT did not give enough consideration to the need for a pedestrian walkway in this location, which has pedestrian traffic generators immediately on each side of the river.  Nevertheless, the new bridge with dual 12 foot travel lanes and dual 10 foot shoulders, is a major improvement for all bridge users, including those who walk and bicycle. MO 370 Discovery Bridge between St. Charles & St. Louis Counties (design) - Funding for retrofitting this bridge with a separated bike/ped lane was fully raised, but problems with design threatened completion of the project earlier this year.  Working with our valued partners, including Trailnet, the City of St. Charles, and MoDOT, we helped encourage all sides to find acceptable solutions and move forward with the project.  At this time it looks like major issues have been resolved and the project should move forward within the next year or two.Chester, IL Mississippi River Bridge (early planning) - Right now MoDOT is in the early planning and scoping phases for this major Mississippi Bridge replacement.  The bridge is part of the TransAmerica Trail/US Bicycle Route 76 and carries a significant amount of cross-country bicycle touring traffic, as well as local traffic.  We are encouraging MoDOT and IDOT to give full consideration and full study of the needs of people who walk and bicycle on this forthcoming bridge replacement.Bike/Ped accessibility on or near the I-70 Bridge at St Charles (early planning) - This bridge has been identified as a priority bike/ped connection for the region, because it connects major population centers to available and future trails on each side of the river.  However, we fear that design and maintenance consideration of the type that nearly derailed the MO 370 bridge could put this important project on hold. A new Missouri River bike/ped crossing opened on the Daniel Boone Bridge in 2016. The new river crossing links the Katy Trail & Chesterfield Monarch Levee Trail. Eventually a series of bridges will link continuous trails on both sides of the river throughout the St Charles/St Louis County area, and directly connect to both the Katy & the Rock Island cross-state trails.Washington, MO Hwy 47 Bridge, including new Bike/Ped Path (under construction) - Connecting all Katy Trail communities to trail has been a major priority of MoBikeFed since its inception over two decades ago.  New bridges or bridge additions made those connections on the Page Ave Extension between St. Louis County & St Charles County, at Hermann, MO, and at Jefferson City.  Citizens and community leaders in Washington, as well as MoDOT officials and state and congressional leadership, got behind the idea of a safe bike/ped crossing on the new Hwy 47 Bridge at Washington in a big way.  That bridge is now under construction and will be open--with its 10-foot separated bike/ped path connecting the city of Washington to the Katy Trail--in 2018. The bridge will also play a key role in future connections between the eastern end of the forthcoming Rock Island Trail and the Katy Trail.Daniel Boone Bridge across the Missouri River in St. Louis/St. Charles Counties - This new major river crossing opened in 2016, connecting the Katy Trail to the Monarch Chesterfield Levee Trail. Helping and encouraging Missouri communities to create and maintain a world-class bicycle, pedestrian, and trails transportation system is one of four major goals in MoBikeFed's Vision for Bicycling and Walking in Missouri. Working to create routine, safe access for people who walk and bicycle across rivers and other major barriers is a very important area of emphasis in carrying out that goal.Your ongoing membership and generous financial support helps turn our Vision into reality!  Photo credits:Bike/ped lane on Jefferson City Bridge, Opulent OpossumPat Jones Bike/Ped Path on the Missouri River Bridge at Jefferson City, MoBikeFed.Daniel Boone Bridge bike/ped path, 2016, MoDOT 
via MoBikeFed Cycling News, Tips, Advocacy Alerts

Daniel Boone Bridge Bike/Ped Path opens; 7th MO River Crossing; Photos; Ribbon Cutting Ceremony June 18th

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Last week MoDOT opened the new bicycle/pedestrian path on the I-64/US-40 Daniel Boone Bridge over the Missouri River at Chesterfield. Construction crews working on the last details of the path were kind enough to allow MoBikeFed Executive Director Brent Hugh access to the new path one day before it officially opened. Daniel Boone Bridge Bike/Ped Path connecting Chesterfield to the Katy Trail is now openThe views of the river are stunning and the connection the path makes--between the Katy Trail and the Monarch Chesterfield Levee Trail--is vital. The Monarch Chesterfield Levee Trail in St. Louis County is 10.5 miles long and will eventually be 17 miles long. On the north side of the river, the Katy Trail is 240 miles long and will soon join with sections of the Rock Island Trail to reach all the way across the state.The new path creates, for the first time ever, easy, safe bicycle and pedestrian access to the Katy Trail for residents of the Chesterfield area in St. Louis County.In 2003, we had just one Missouri River bridge with a dedicated bike/ped path. With the Daniel Boone Bridge we now have seven bridges with dedicated bike/ped crossings and no fewer than five more are in progress.MoDOT press release for the opening of the bike/ped path says:The Missouri Department of Transportation will open the new bicycle/pedestrian trail on the eastbound I-64 Daniel Boone Missouri River Bridge tomorrow [June 9th, 2016].The path connects the Monarch Levee Trail in St. Louis County to the KATY Trail in St. Charles County.  The Boone Bridge is the seventh Missouri River crossing in the state to have a dedicated bike/ped crossing.“These Missouri River crossings are important because they create the connections that allow people to walk and bicycle in Missouri and because they give people an opportunity to make a personal connection with the beauty of the Missouri River and the engineering marvel of the bridges,” said Missouri Bicycle and Pedestrian Federation Director Brent Hugh.When the new path opens, the Monarch Levee Trail on either side of the Boone Bridge will also reopen.  The trail closed in 2013 to allow for construction of the new eastbound bridge as well as the rehabilitation of the 1980s bridge to carry westbound traffic. Boone Bridge Bike/Ped Path Ribbon Cutting Ceremony June 18th, 2016, 9am“Great Rivers Greenway is thrilled that the new Boone Bridge bike-pedestrian facility is open.  This connection, from the Missouri Greenway to Busch Greenway, will connect communities in western St. Louis County with St. Charles County providing a great experience for people to enjoy walking and riding along the Missouri River,” said Great Rivers Greenway Executive Director Susan Trautman."When we opened our store in Chesterfield Valley we were not expecting to be a trailhead for the KATY Trail.  We think that the new Boone Bridge bicycle path is going to transform bicycle access to the east side of the KATY Trail.  We predict this will encourage cyclists to visit the small towns and wineries along the KATY Trail as well as the businesses along the St. Charles Riverfront," said Big Shark Bike Company owner Mike Weiss.For more details on I-64 Daniel Boone Missouri River Bridge project, go to http://www.modot.org/stlouis/major_projects/newdanielboonebridge.htm.MoDOT, the City of Chesterfield, and the City of Weldon Spring are planning a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the bike/ped path on Saturday, June 18th, 2016 at 9AM. The public is invited to the ceremony and to run, bike, or walk the new bridge afterwards.    View/download the full album of photos of the Daniel Boone Bike/Ped Path Creating a world-class bicycle and pedestrian system in Missouri is one of the four primary goals of MoBikeFed's Vision for Bicycling and Walking in Missouri. Creating bicycle and pedestrian access across Missouri's major rivers is one of the most important ways we achieve this goal.When MoBikeFed began advocating for bike/ped access across major rivers in 1994, we had only one Missouri River crossing, at Boonville where the Katy Trail crosses the river. Today we have seven, with no fewer than FIVE more in progress.Your ongoing membership and generous financial support make progress like this possible.  Thank you!
via MoBikeFed Cycling News, Tips, Advocacy Alerts

At Long Last, St. Louis to Hire Dedicated Bike/Ped Coordinator

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At long last, St. Louis City is hiring a dedicated bicycle and pedestrian coordinator.  For over a decade advocates have called for the city to budget for and hire a dedicated bicycle/pedestrian coordinator.  Recently the pressure has mounted because the response to the St Louis City bicycle friendly Community application called for the city to hire a dedicated, professional bike/ped coordinator, and St. Louis-based advocacy group Trailnet has ratcheted up the pressure for the city to improve bike/ped safety and hire the coordinator soon. St. Louis Mayor Slay and Alderman Scott Ogilvie are two of the major supporters of improvements for bicycling and walking in St. Louis City governmentThe St Louis Post-Dispatch wrote:The city is looking to hire a bike/pedestrian coordinator to plan for and respond to the needs of cyclists and pedestrians.The salary range for the job is $47,814 to $73,788, the city said in a job post, for what is described as a “professional traffic engineering position.”Job duties will include coordinating bicycle and pedestrian projects; being a point of contact for bike- and pedestrian-related grants, awards and the bike share program; and implementing bike lanes, shared lane markings, signs, bike racks, bike corrals, better crosswalks and pedestrian signals.A bachelor’s degree in urban planning or transportation planning, or in traffic or civil engineering or a directly related field, is required. The city also wants five years’ experience in transportation planning, land use planning and in urban planning and design.“Our new bike/pedestrian coordinator will help make St. Louis a more bikable, walkable place to live, work, and explore by considering everyone — not just those behind the wheel — when it comes to designing and maintaining our streets,” Mayor Francis Slay said in a statement Friday.The deadline to apply is Aug. 7.St. Louis city has gradually moved towards becoming more bicycle and pedestrian friendly.  But part of that process is following national standards and recommendations, including the recommendation to have a full-time, dedicated, bicycle and pedestrian coordinator.  We congratulate St. Louis City and the local advocates who have helped make this happen.Link to the bike/ped coordinator job posting is here. Working for more, better, safer bicycling and walking across Missouri is our goal.  You can find all the details in our Vision for Bicycling and Walking in Missouri. Spreading the word about progress and good news about bicycling and walking across Missouri is an important part of our mission.  Supporting local advocacy groups who work hard for advances like this is an important part of our mission as well.Your ongoing membership and generous financial support helps our Vision become reality! Link:  At long last, St Louis to hire dedicated bike/ped coordinator; Application deadline August 7th
via MoBikeFed Cycling News, Tips, Advocacy Alerts

Missouri Fuel Tax Increase Stalls; Bike/Ped Groups Advocating for Solution Including Bike/Ped Funding

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One of the major issues we discussed with legislators at the recent Bicycle & Pedestrian Day at the Capitol was the issue of transportation funding.  If the General Assembly does not pass some kind of funding solution this year, MoDOT will not be able to match its entire federal transportation allotment in 2017, and will have to return over $100 million that year. Senate President Pro Tem Ron Richard (Joplin) If no solution is found next year, MoDOT will have to return over $400 million in 2018, and each year thereafter.So motivation is high in Jefferson City to solve this problem.At Capitol Day Monday, our message was that any proposed funding increase should include funding for much-needed bicycle and pedestrian accommodations on the roads and bridges the tax increase will fund. We very much understand the need to have enough transportation funding to--at minimum--maintain Missouri's current 34,000 mile state road system.  But because the proposals discussed so far include no funding for bike/ped elements on the roads they fund, we have taken a neutral position on the legislationWe have, however, proposed an amendment that would allow road and highway dollars to be spent on bike/ped needs on those roads--sidewalks on roads that go through cities and towns, crosswalks and busy intersection, bike lanes on roads that need them, and so on.  That proposal has received little support from legislators so far--it is a long term project to educate legislators and voters on the issues and the need.Earlier this year, we testified about these issues at the Senate Transportation Committee hearing.  Tuesday at we testified about these issues in the House Transportation Committee hearing. Tuesday the Senate took up its proposal to increase the fuel tax by $.02 per gallon.  Several senators who are opposed to tax increases of any sort, led by Sen. Robert Schaaf of St. Joseph, filibustered the bill.  The filibuster has, for practical purposes, ended any chance of passing a fuel tax increase this legislative session.Missourinet covered this latest development:It appears that a motor fuel tax increase proposal is dead in the Missouri legislature.Senator Ron Richard (R-Joplin) said there doesn’t seem to be a way for the proposal to get past legislative opposition.“Even if the Senate passes it, the House said they’re not supportive,” said Richard. “So I’m not sure if I want to waste any time.”House Speaker John Diehl, Junior (R-Town and Country), has said it appeared a solution for transportation funding would have to wait until the next legislative session that begins January 1.The Missouri Times article has more details about the Senate debate and filibuster.The MIssouri Bicycle & Pedestrian Federation continues to work to develop a coalition to support funding for needed bicycle and pedestrian facilities as part of any statewide transportation funding proposal and to educate lawmakers about this issue.  Inclusion of bicycle and pedestrian funding as part of any transportation funding proposal has been identified by our members and supporters as a very high priority. Developing a world-class bicycle and pedestrian transportation system in Missouri is one of the primary goals of MoBikeFed's Vision for Bicycling and Walking in Missouri.Your membership and generous financial support helps turn our Vision into reality.Many thanks to the many members, supporters, and allied organizations and agencies who joined us for Capitol Day Monday. Your voices are making a real difference! Link:  Missouri fuel tax increase stalls for 2015; bike/ped groups advocating for solution including bike/ped funding