2013 at a Glance
By Joan Pasiuk, Program Director
The final Bike Walk Twin Cities pilot year is plenty jam-packed. Read on for what's ahead!
Final Capital Projects Opening:
The network continues to expand across Minneapolis and Saint Paul and into the suburbs. We were excited to open the Campus Connector project in October-linking Roseville to the University of Minnesota's Saint Paul campus and providing safer bike and pedestrian routes for students (elementary school to graduate school!), access to Rosedale Mall, and connections to numerous businesses, places of worship, and recreational destinations. In 2013, twelve final bike/ped projects will open with funding from the BWTC pilot:
Planning Studies Completed:
In early 2013 all planning studies under the Bike Walk 2012 Street Solutions initiative will be complete. These studies will enable Minneapolis and Saint Paul to have a legacy of projects with much preliminary engineering and feasibility assessment completed, making them more competitive for future funding. Locations of these projects were identified by the communities and read like a dream list of improved network connections on complex corridors.
From one of twelve BWTC-funded planning studies, a conceptual drawing showing recommended improvements to the 44th/ Penn/Osseo intersection. Read more about this intersection and input from the community here.
Bike Walk Move Campaign Wrapping Up:
After all the neighborhood engagement, special events, project openings, radio ads, jingle contest, newspaper columns, Facebook and Twitter posts, and ads on bus sides and bus shelters, we are anticipating release of the campaign evaluation. What is your favorite Bike Walk Move image? Mine is Louis Moore looking strong as ever and speaking boldly.
Local voices have been a hallmark of the Bike Walk Move campaign.
The pilot provides continued funding in 2013 for SPOKES Bike Walk Center in the Seward neighborhood of Minneapolis and the Community Partners Bike Library program that provides a bicycle transportation option to economic empowerment organizations and their clients in Saint Paul and Minneapolis. Previously funded BWTC investments are now augmented by numerous other sources for continued service. Nice Ride Minnesota bike sharing, for example, will expand in 2013 through National Park Service grants.
Learn-to-Ride classes are among the many services provided by SPOKES in Minneapolis. Photo credit: Jennifer Larson.
Our 2012 on-street bike/ped count data will be released in February. Because there are so many projects yet in the pipeline, we will add another year of count data to our project. In 2013, BWTC will conduct monthly counts at select locations as well as annual benchmarking counts at over 40 locations and in collaboration with the City of Minneapolis count program. This additional, final year of data will enable us to evaluate the traffic patterns of new bike/ped projects as well as to more accurately gauge overall levels of bicycling and walking for transportation. In addition, the Nonmotorized Transportation Pilot Program will present a wrap-up report across all four pilot communities in early 2014.
Get your clipboards ready: one more round of annual and monthly counts in 2013!
New for 2013:
We have identified two aspects of our work to date that warrant much more attention going forward: equity and walkability. We are working with Neighborhood House in Saint Paul to create an empowerment model, helping the organization (and other social service organizations like it) to better address the transportation needs of their participants. And we are developing a curriculum and experiential education program to empower residents as walkability champions.
For attending events, putting plans on paper and projects on the ground, providing advice, reading e-newsletters, talking to or serving as elected officials, and for all the other ways bicycling and walking investments have come to life over the past years-thank you. We look forward to an exciting 2013 together.