Revamped bike plan up for review

Carson City's proposed revisions to its bicycle plan does not include a multi-use path along the future freeway south of Highway 395.

The proposed bicycle plan shifts to Saliman Drive the north/south bicycle path connection in a combination of paths and bike lanes.

"We believe that will be an issue," said Andrew Burnham, Carson City development services director. "There will be those who will say we shouldn't have given it up."

Anne Macquarie, president of local cycling group Muscle Powered, said moving the proposed multi-use path to Saliman would make the proposed freeway path less usable, especially for children, because of hazardous intersections on the road. She said in her preliminary review of the new plan, she questioned whether there is enough room on Saliman Drive for a multi-use path.

"It's really hard to tell until we get to talk to city staff and look at the maps with more detail," Macquarie said. "Our main concern is we would still like to see the city have an overall bike transportation system that is actually usable and convenient, not one that takes you from dead end to dead end. This plan makes a good start at that in places, but it needs to be implemented."

The city will host a workshop Wednesday to get public input on the bike plan, which was revamped to work out a route for the southern half of the freeway path and to prepare for Carson City's designation as a "metropolitan planning organization," a federal designation that brings with it more funding and regulation.

With the MPO status, the city must show how it will pay for its bike plan over the next 20 years.

"We did (the proposed plan) knowing we have constraints that we didn't in 1991," Burnham said. " (The current bike plan) is a great plan for the long term, but we don't have the resources to build it. We need to see what we can build. The key is this is a work in progress. We're not saying we're locked into it, we're open to residents making this plan work."

The proposed plan also:

-- eliminates about 22 miles of bike lanes.

-- adds about 23 miles of "shared lanes," portions of a roadway where bicycles and autos should have enough room to share travel lanes.

-- eliminates paths from the Arrowhead Drive industrial area, a move granted at the request of manufacturers in the area, Burnham said.

Burnham said after Wednesday's workshop, the plan will be taken to three neighborhood meetings for review before heading to a joint meeting of the city's Regional Transportation and Parks and Recreation commissions in January. It is scheduled to be considered by the Board of Supervisors in March.

Plans are on display in the lobby at City Hall, 201 N. Carson St.; the Carson Building Department, 2621 Northgate Lane, Suite 6; and the Development Services/Utilities Department, 3505 Butti Way. Call 887-2355 for information.

If you go:

What: Carson City bicycle plan revision public workshop

When: Wednesday, 7 p.m.

Where: Community Center's Sierra Room, 851 E. William St.

Changes to Carson City's bicycle plan include:

-- 36 miles of bike lanes compared to 58 miles in the current plan.

-- 29 miles of shared travel lanes for automobiles and bicycles versus 6 miles in the current plan.

-- Both plans show about 6.5 miles of bike paths.


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