Downtown Detroit Public Meeting
We’ve encouraged the Downtown Detroit Partnership for some time about making Downtown Detroit more bike-friendly — and now they are and in a major way. This is so critical now since the area’s rebirth is bringing more traffic and their public bike share program will launch in April.
They’ve been working on designs for an initial phase of a protected bike lane network through the Downtown and even along Woodward. These are advanced designs unlike anything seen before in Michigan. Everyone wants to make sure they will work safely. They want your feedback on this (as well as future bike share station locations and more.)
They are hosting a public meeting on Monday, December 12th from 4pm until 6pm at the Boll Family YMCA. If you can attend, please register. If you can’t, please share your thoughts with contact James Fidler at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Protected Bike Lanes Expanding
In addition to the downtown, protected bike lanes are being installed on Michigan Avenue and Livernois this year. Cass Avenue’s will happen next year with E. Jefferson not far behind.
A national media source asked us why Detroit is building so many protected bike lanes. We said we have to because Detroit is going to be America’s number one city for bicycling.
With this rapid change, there’s a major learning curve for everyone. We’re working with city and other stakeholders on safety education efforts. We also worked with MDOT to update their “What every motorist must know about bike lanes” brochure, which now includes protected bike lanes.
We’re asking everyone to be careful, considerate and patient while everyone learns how to operate around these new designs. Just like roundabouts, it’s going to take a bit of time.
Neighborhood & Greenway Planning Approved
Four neighborhood planning contracts were approved by City Council last week. All four include planning for these areas to become 20-minute neighborhoods, where every non-work errand can be made with a 20 minute bike ride or walk.
The Greater Islandview contract also includes the Beltline Greenway which we’ve been working on for a number of years. We helped make it part of the Iron Belle Trail, which brought in million dollars in funding to acquire the private property. Our Rouge River Greenway concept is the Grandmont-Rosedale project.
Look for community meetings on all projects during the next few months.
In the meantime, enjoy this great video from ClickonDetroit that discusses 20-minute neighborhoods as well as the Beltline Greenway.
Gordie Howe International Bridge
While there is no guarantee that we’ll be able to bike or walk over the new bridge, it will be designed for it. That’s a requirement of the design proposal released by the Windsor-Detroit Bridge Authority (WDBA) and a priority for us over the past few years.
We met with the three teams bidding on the project last week. One engineer noted it was critical having the bike and pedestrian requirement at the start because it greatly affects the bridge design and how much the road surface is allowed to deflect. In other words, in a car you might not notice a bridge moving up and down, but it would be unnerving on a bike or on foot.
We’re on the WDBA U.S. Environmental Advisory team and will stay on top of this project as it moves forward.
Our Fundaising Campaign
We need your help so that we can continue our work. Please consider making a tax-deductible donation to our Coalition. Thanks to those who have already given generously.
Also, by shopping through Amazon Smile program, a percentage of your purchase goes towards the Coalition. It’s an easy way to give and it doesn’t cost you anything extra.