Huge Bike Plan Update
Kicks Off in February
By Mary Brown

Over the years, the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition has alerted bicyclists to hundreds of meeting and hearings, pleaded for volunteers at dozens of events, and beseeched you to write letters to the powers-that-be.

Well, this time, we REALLY mean it! The MOTHER OF ALL MEETINGS is right around the corner. It's the citywide Bike Plan Update Workshop, followed by neighborhood-specific workshops. If you've ever thought of lifting a finger for better biking in your neighborhood, now is the time to do it.

Who, What, and Why? The Bike Plan Update is a joint effort between the Department of Parking and Traffic Bicycle Program, Alta Planning + Design, and the SFBC. It's an official City effort to expand and refine the existing Bicycle Route Network (you know, those green and red signs all over the city with numbered bike routes). In other words, it's going to result in miles and miles of new bike lanes. In addition to the Bike Network improvements, the DPT will also update the Bike Plan in regards to bicycle parking, promotion, policies, and more!

For the time it takes to watch Forrest Gump, you can attend a Bike Plan Update workshop and give your suggestions for specific bike lanes or intersection improvements.

We're All Ears These aren't boring sit-and-be-lectured-at workshops. You'll have an active role in planning the shape of your streets, plus hear more about how colored bike lanes, contra-flow lanes, bike boxes, and special bike traffic signals might work in San Francisco. Everybody is invited to these workshops: bicyclists, neighbors, merchants, etc. In order to get truly bicycle-friendly streets it's crucial that bicyclists take the time to share their unique perspective during this planning process. After the February 4 kick-off workshop there will be five neighborhood-specific workshops, where everyone will have the chance to give input on where they want improvements.

Although not every single project suggested will be extensively analyzed and immediately implemented, it's crucial (for funding issues) that even lower-priority bicycle projects also have enough support to be included in the Plan.

This kind of opportunity for community-supported bicycle planning doesn't come around very often—it's been seven years since the Plan was developed. Let's seize this chance and make the most of the next few months!

Convinced? We hope so. The Bike Plan Update Kick-off Workshop is happening on February 4 from 6-8pm at the LGBT Center, 1800 Market. We hope to see you there and at the regional workshop held in your neighborhood, where we'll take a closer look at connecting specific streets within the region. Bike lanes connecting your commute—what better return on your two-hour investment could you ask for?

For more information, and to leave suggestions for the online street improvement survey, go to www.sfbike.org/bikeplan or contact Bicycle Network Director Mary Brown at 431-BIKE ext. 24 or mary@sfbike.org.

* Current number of SF bike commuters: 30,000
* Current miles of bike lanes/paths in SF: 30
* Approximate miles of bike lanes once the Bike Network is complete: 60
* Amount by which bike commuting will increase once completed: Doubled
* Increase in bike commuting between 1990-2000: 100%

top