Monday, January 30, 2012

Dunwoody Bike Lanes: 6 new miles in 2 years

Great news! At the January 23rd council meeting, for 2012 the City of Dunwoody will be installing 3.4 miles of new bike lanes as part of Routine Accommodation and following their Complete Streets policy during regular road resurfacing projects. In 2011, Dunwoody added 3 miles as well. Click here for the discussion doc from Public Works Director Option D / Alternative 4.

Click here for the updated 5-year plan in detail (just look at Option D)

An additional $485,000 has been budgeted for road widening to accommodate bike lanes on portions of Mt. Vernon, Spalding and Chamblee Dunwoody.

Bike lanes solely from re-striping and road diets to be installed on:
  • Ashford Center Parkway (1/2 mile) 
  • Perimeter Center East (1.2 miles)
 New Bike lanes in total for 2012: 3.4 miles (+ 3 miles previously added in 2011)

Want to hear the actual conversation at the city council meeting? Video quality is a bit lacking but the conversation of adding bike lanes to Chamblee Dunwoody is passable if you turn up the speakers. The first person speaking is Public Works Director Michael Smith, a Georgia Tech grad. Folks asking the questions are our city council members. Without Michael’s support and “out of the box” thinking, we’d most likely not have any bike lanes in Dunwoody. The video is available here.

Other good news on the “Routine Accommodation” front is that the very first intersection improvement being engineered in Dunwoody includes bike lanes: North Peachtree & Tilly Mill. Click here for the story.


Monday, January 9, 2012

Dunwoody Non-Motorized Transportation Committee

Hello Friends,

Do you live, work or play in Dunwoody, Georgia? Are you interested in helping to make the city more walkable or bikeable? Could you spare 2-3 hours a month? If so, then please read on:

I am on the city's Sustainability Commission. The Commission has several working committees comprised of volunteers working on various initiatives. They are posted on the city’s website here and include recycling, green space, water and transportation.

As part of my role, I am organizing a Non-Motorized Transportation Committee. The Committee for Non-Motorized Transportation will focus on pedestrian and bicycle transportation options for recreation, going to school, meeting friends for coffee, commuting, family outings, or just to get out and get some fresh air. We will concentrate on the 8 year olds as well as the 80 year olds. Especially those who are “interested but concerned” (safety, etc.). The main tenets are Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, Engineering, and Evaluation.

In closing, I’m looking for people who are not pulled in too many different directions, and can commit to spending 2-3 hours a month (+/-) to work (outside of meeting times) on volunteer activities in the community that we agree upon as a group.

Please feel free to drop me a note if you're interested or have any questions at: jseconder <at> yahoo dot com

Here's what the Committee would work on:
The Committee for Non-Motorized Transportation will focus on pedestrian and bicycle transportation options for recreation, going to school, meeting friends for coffee, commuting, family outings, or just to get out and get some fresh air. We will concentrate on the 8 year olds as well as the 80 year olds. The main tenets are Education, Encouragement, Enforcement, Engineering, and Evaluation.
Goals / Objectives:
Extracts from Dunwoody Master Transportation Plan (page 78. PDF page 84):

·         Promote awareness and education initiatives to bring about the benefits associated with walking and biking
·         Encourage an annual recreational bike ride around the City
·         Allow use of showers at recreational centers for bike commuters
·         Endorse Bike to Work and Walk to School Day
·         Host valet bike parking at downtown events
·         Support Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Weeks and safety classes through the Recreation Department and City schools
·         Publicize the bicycle and pedestrian network and other planning initiatives through publications and the City’s website. Consider an interactive online bicycle and pedestrian network map.
·         Encourage the distribution of information on safety/legal requirements and/or benefits of walking/biking (e.g., “Did You Know” posters) through local bicycle shops, grocery stores, banks, doctor/dentist offices, and park and recreational centers
·         Sponsor and coordinate pedestrian safety courses amongst City law enforcement officers
·         Create a citywide helmet and bicycle light promotion program
·         Work with local bicycle and pedestrian advocacy groups to promote “riding tips” or “walking tips” clinics
·         Provide a space for bicycling clubs, advocacy groups, and other related interest
·         groups to meet and hold classes and workshops
·         Hold ceremonies and “ribbon-cuttings” to celebrate bicycle program and infrastructure accomplishments
·         Create a Bicycle Officer Program that emphasizes education over punishment.
o    The City of Davis, California promotes safety and awareness through enforcement by its police department called the Bicycle Officer Program. Applying this type of program in the City of Dunwoody would require having an officer on a bicycle andfocusing on various bicycle infractions, such as running a stop sign, running a red light, and lack of bicycle lights when riding at night. Enforcement would concentrate in the commercial and education nodes, such as Perimeter Center, Dunwoody Village, and Georgia Perimeter College. As a way to promote education traffic laws and etiquette to bicyclists, the officer could issue warning tickets as a way to prevent discouraging new or inexperienced riders. When warranted, tickets are issued; however, the City of Davis has instituted incentives as well, such as offering a discount on a bicycle light at a local bicycle shop with a ticket for a missing bicycle light.
Other Items:

(1)     Advise the council regarding the creation, development, and revision of a phased walks and bikeways master plan.
(2)     Set priorities for new facilities or enhancement of existing routes in the walks and bikeways master plan.
(3)     Identify and prioritize critical gaps in facilities; advise which critical gaps require city action.
(4)     Review project designs related to proposed bicycle and pedestrian improvements, including review of new proposals for subdivision or development of land or improvements to existing subdivisions and developments, and recommend qualitative enhancements, following criteria established by the committee.
(5)     Recommend walk and bikeway priorities for local, state, and federal projects.
(6)     Assist in identifying alternative funding sources for walks and bikeways projects.
(7)     Review city ordinances with respect to pedestrian and bicycle requirements and recommend enhancements or changes.
(8)     Review state and regional policies pertaining to pedestrian and bicycle facilities and recommend changes that fit local community needs.
(9)     Report annually to the council regarding walk and bikeway system needs and priorities for consideration during capital improvements program and budget deliberations.
(10)   Work with regional organizations to coordinate regional bikeway linkages.
(11)   Work with other regional advisory boards to coordinate walks and bikeways planning.
(12)   Work with K-8 schools on Safe Routes to School.
(13)   Work with GPC to encourage non-motorized transit options.
(14)   Endorse and promote National Bike Month (May) and host activities such as those as suggested by the League of American Bicyclists.
(15)   Work on and report to the City Council on Resolution 2009-11-63, Action Plan for Bicycle-Friendly Community.
(16)   Submit application and achieve nationally recognized Bicycle Friendly Community status by June, 2014.

City Staff: To include the Bike/Ped Coordinator, Community Development, Director of Sustainability, Public Works, Parks & Recreation, Police.
At-Large public citizens, who live, work or play in Dunwoody.
Representatives from the business community (Chamber of Commerce, PCID), Healthcare profession, Perimeter Transportation & Sustainability Coalition, Georgia Perimeter College, K-8 Safe Routes to School.
Duration, Membership, Commitment, etc.

This is a voluntary committee under the Sustainability Commission, with “at will” participation, open to those to choose to help. We ask that members be available to spend at least 2-3 hours per month periodically outside of meetings in volunteering and working on action items.

The Committee will meet regularly, with at least a 14 day notice (21 days is preferable) as placed on the city’s official meeting calendar, open to the public. As a minimum, the committee will meet once per calendar quarter.