Monday, August 21, 2006

City of Pittsburgh Announces Bicycling Plans for Liberty Ave.

On Saturday, August 19th Pittsburgh's Department of City Planning announced their plans for striping and marking pavement to better facilitate bicycle transportation through the neighborhood of Bloomfield. Richard Meritzer, the part-time bike/ped planner with the city, facilitated the presentation and follow-up discussion.

Over 50 bicyclists attended the meeting as well as a handful of neighborhood business owners and non-riding residents. An overwhelming majority of the folks present were very supportive of the city taking steps to do a better job accommodating bicyclists through this corridor including the president of the Bloomfield Business Association. A healthy question/answer session addressed concerns ranging from defining Shared Lane Markings and where they will be placed, to questioning the City's decision to only stripe one line for the bike lane despite the fact that there is on-street parking. Many feel, adding a second stripe will ensure that drivers park closer to the curb and not further into the middle of the bike lane - a practice common on the Beechwood Blvd bike lane, which is also striped with only a single line.

The City assured everyone there that they will take as many steps necessary to keep bicyclists as safe as possible through this corridor, and that they will constantly revisit this area to see if there are ways in which to make things safer.

The large turnout also reinforced that there is a huge cycling presence in the area who would like to see more cycling improvements in their neighborhood and throughout the city. Due to the success of the format, the city may hold future, similar "town hall" style meetings for cyclists, so stay tuned.

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