Bicycle Coalition News about Circuit Trails, pedestrian safety, sustainability, and environmental issues in Philadelphia and the surrounding region in NJ, Delaware County, Bucs County, and more.

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A suburban bike lane and an asphalt sidepath on Academy St in Clayton, NJ

A suburban bike lane and an asphalt sidepath on Academy St in Clayton, NJ

The Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC) has just posted its Draft 2017-2020 Transportation Improvement Program (TIP) for Southeastern Pennsylvania. Similar to a Capital Program Budget the TIP is the regionally agreed-upon list of priority transportation projects, as required by federal law. The TIP document must list all projects that intend to use federal funds, along with all non-federally funded projects that are regionally significant.

Beginning in 2012, the Bicycle Coalition has been meeting with PENNDOT, DVRPC and the County staff planners to improve bicycling on suburban roads. It has been a long process, but in the end, it was fruitful. PENNDOT used an dormant pot of money set aside for bike lane design and implementation in 2005 (MPMS# 63406) and hired the engineering firm McCormick Taylor to develop bike lane and enhanced shoulder striping plans for seven segments in roads in each of the 4 suburban counties.

  • Bucks – US 202 from Doylestown to New Hope (cost estimate only)
  • Bucks –Bristol Borough – Jefferson St* to the Bristol SEPTA Station (Local Rd)
  • Chester – Kennett Pike PA 52 in Kennett Township
  • Chester – Business Rt 30 from the existing bike lanes in Coatesville to the Thorndale SEPTA Station
  • Montgomery – Morris Road from Valley Forge Rd to Montgomery County College
  • Montgomery – West Pointe Pike Morris Rd* to E Hancock St via the North Wales SEPTA Station (Partially a County Rd)
  • Delaware – Sugartown Rd from Strafford SEPTA Station and the Radnor Trail to Chester County Line
  • Delaware – Route 320 from Swarthmore to Springfield Township

Now that the funds in MPMS #63406 are depleted, the Counties have proposed to replenish the line item with $500,000 to continue this work. These funds will be able to go towards more striping plans, but also installation & maintenance, bike lane signage, and symbols. We are hopeful that PennDOT’s pilot program might also be used to also install several of the roads identified above.

To show strong support for better bike lanes in the suburbs, we encourage you to send in positive feedback to DVRPC. Comments must be received by 5:00 p.m. Eastern time on Monday, June 27, 2016

MPMS# 63406 – Retrofit for suburban Bike Lanes and Shoulders

There are other bicycle projects in the TIP. For example it continues the inclusion of the Circuit Line Item, which was amended into the current PA TIP (FY 2015-2018) last summer. This money is necessary to ensure that the region keeps working towards its goal of achieving the completion of Circuit Trails network by 2040 as directed by the DVRPC Long Range Plan. The Circuit Trails line item is identified as MPMS #63406.

To quickly comment on these and other bike projects in the Draft PA FY 17 TIP you can go to our Action Alert Page. For a deeper dive to comment on other transportation projects that include transit and walking visit the DVRPC Draft TIP web page.

In addition you can also attend the public meeting/webinar that will also include the Regional Transportation (Air Quality) Conformity:

Tuesday, June 21, 2016
4:00 p.m.–6:00 p.m.
DVRPC conference room
190 N. Independence Mall West, 8th floor
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Please register by June 17, 2016 via phone at (215) 592-1800 or email at public_affairs@dvrpc.org for web conferencing.

John Boyle

Author

John has been a commuting cyclist for more than 20 years. In 1994 he began working as a volunteer for the Bicycle Coalition of the Delaware Valley after attending a volunteer night, and later served as a board member in 1997-98. In 1999 John left Philadelphia for Charlottesville, VA, where he helped establish the Alliance for Community Choice in Transportation (ACCT), a bicycle and walking advocacy group.