Thursday, November 19, 2009

Wichita Falls MTP Bicycle Master Plan

I stopped in to the Transportation Master Plan Public Meeting tonight, primarily because I was interested in the biking portion. The Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) plans for transportation for more than Wichita Falls proper (although that is the major portion.)

Usually at a public meeting, you sit through a presentation and then have an opportunity to ask questions and make comments. However, at this meeting, they had maps and reports on various parts of the plan set up around the room with people top answer questions. So I was able to go directly to the portion I was interested in and get one-on-one attention, especially as I arrived early and they were already set up and ready to go.
I've put a map to the left on the proposed bike plans. The green circle is the circle hike/bike trail system already underway. I did ask the representative what a "bike facility" was. It is a dedicated bike lane on a street or a dedicated bike avenue separated from the road. A Class 3 bike route is a sign posted route on the road for bikes to use.
I left my comments at the meeting. I encourage others who want to see the city encourage greener transportation options to chime in as well. The full bicycling plan is 101 pages, but worth a quick scan and more in-depth study by those interested in this issue. My reasons for supporting more biking options in the city:
- Fewer cars on the road; better air quality
- Fewer cars on the road; reduce wear and tear on infrastructure
- Improved health for those riding bikes
- Opportunity to capitalize on our biking reputation with Hotter 'n Hell
-- Add additional short events during the year (tourism dollars)
-- Encourage other biking related businesses (training facilities, manufacturing, etc.)
If you have thoughts on this topic, please send your comments to the MPO.

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