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History of US Bicycle Routes In 1970’s interest in long distance bicycle travel proliferates
History of US Bicycle Routes • In 1978 AASHTO establishes US Bicycle Routes Developed policies & guidelines Used same framework & processes as US Highway System
First US Bicycle Routes designated in 1982 But no routes designated since
The Vision Develop a coordinated and connected network of bicycle routes across the entire United States
Create a corridor plan for a network of bicycle routes that connects states on regional and national levels, spurs the development of new routes, and creates alternative transportation options. Work with State DOTs and other agencies through AASHTO to assist and encourage development and adoption of these routes. Educate the public on a national and local level, with the potential of increased bicycle mode share for transportation and recreation.
The Power of Designation • The street or route name changes, but the designation goes on and on... • With a consistent route designation, travelers can follow a route • Across town • Across the state • Across the country!
AASHTO Task Force on US Bicycle Routes • State Traffic Engineers • Iowa, Oregon, Mississippi, West Virginia • Roadway Design Engineers • State of Maryland, City of Springfield, MO • State Bicycle/Pedestrian Coordinators • South Carolina, Pennsylvania • Federal Highway Administration • Bicycle Route Organizations • Adventure Cycling Association • East Coast Greenway • Mississippi River Trail
Organizations Supporting US Bicycle Routes • AASHTO • Adventure Cycling Association • USDOT - FHWA • Bikes Belong • American Public Works Association • League of American Bicyclists • America Bikes • American Trails • Alliance for Bicycling & Walking • SRAM • Association of Pedestrian & Bicycle Professionals • National Center for Bicycling & Walking • The Lazar Foundation • Education Foundation of America • Pedestrian & Bicycle Information Center • New Belgium Brewing Company
PHASE 1 • Collect, compile and review information on existing and proposed multi-state bicycle routes • Completed in 2005 • Report available at www.adventurecycling.org/usbrs
Phase 1 - Collection of data on existing or proposed State, Regional, and Local Routes
PHASE 2 • Develop recommended corridors to comprise a logical national system • Corridors are about 50 miles in width • Corridors are flexible - can change if needed • Produce a map of the draft U.S. Bicycle Corridor Plan
Phase 2 – Corridor Criteria • Identify: • Continuous routes • Routes of regional & national significance • Historic transportation corridors • Popular regional / national cycling routes • Connect: • Population centers • Primary destinations • Scenic corridors www.adventurecycling.org/usbrs
Starting Point… Inventory of routes overlaid by the proposed corridor system
PHASE 3 • Develop a logical system of designations for U.S. bicycle routes • Assign appropriate designations to each corridor • Clearly identify corridor • Accommodate future expansion & extension
Proposed Route Designations • Five different proposals developed: • 1 or 2 digit (similar to US highways) • 1 digit & low 2-digit • Single letter (alphabetical) • Name/Abbreviation (of route name) • Letter / number combination
The results will be more transportation options, more people cycling, better health for Americans, and a cleaner environment.
“We are writing to express our strong support for a U.S. Bicycle Route System … As enthusiastic cyclists, we believe that such a system has many important merits.” Congressman Jim Oberstar Chairman, Transportation & Infrastructure Committee Congressman Peter DeFazio Chairman, Subcommittee on Highways and Transit
Implementation • State & local agencies determine best route along each corridor • Local organizations can help • Route applications submitted to AASHTO by State DOTs • Develop wayfinding tools • Maps, signs, trailblazing • Expansion of the system • Spur & loop routes • New routes & corridors
Implementation • 30 State DOTs + DC are working on establishing US Bicycle Routes • Varying levels of progress & interest • Regional meetings of states to work out connectivity & share ideas / support • Concerns: • Funding (signs, maps, etc) • Resources (staff, survey) • Risk management
Implementation: State by State State & local agencies determine best approach Identify & assess suitable routes within each corridor Coordinate with transportation divisions, counties, townships and MPOs Utilize local cycling organizations & volunteers Align routes with neighboring states
Virginia’s USBR 1 & 76 Part of their State Bike Plan Realigned Routes in 2007 Signed throughout state VA Bike Federation uses USBR 1 & 76 for events and club rides
Michigan: Volunteer groups identified best routes along corridors & performed outreach to local agencies Much of proposed route is on county & local roads May see approved routes as soon as 2011
US Bicycle Route Signing Sign design established in 1978 MUTCD 'Bike' equivalent to the US Highway shield
US Bicycle Route Signing New design recommended by US Bicycle Route Task Force & NCUTCD Submitted to FHWA
US Bicycle Route Signing Signing similar to other numbered routes Trailblazing Guidance Reassurance
Bicycle Route Signing 2009 MUTCD added many new bicycle guide signs NCUTCD working on additional signs Also may be used on USBRs
US Bicycle Routes Web Site: www.adventurecycling.org/usbrs