GO by BIKE
Regional Bike Plan Early Action Program
In a historic move that will make biking safer, easier, and more attractive for San Diegans throughout the region, the SANDAG Board of Directors on September 27, 2013, approved the Regional Bike Plan Early Action Program (EAP) – a $200 million initiative to expand the bike network countywide and finish high-priority projects within a decade.
“This is the first time in the history of the San Diego region where a financial commitment of this magnitude has been made to dramatically expand bike infrastructure,” SANDAG Chair and Santee Councilmember Jack Dale said. “Our goal is to create a comfortable riding environment for people of all ages and abilities so biking can become a viable form of transportation. Getting more people on bikes is not just good for the environment, it’s also good for public health, the economy, and the overall mobility of the region.”
Studies have shown that regions that have invested in bicycling have seen significant economic and health benefits. For example, a 2010 study estimated the annual economic impact of bicycle recreation and tourism in Wisconsin to be $924 million and the potential value of health benefits from reducing short car trips and increasing bicycle trips to total nearly $410 million. Another study, published in 2011, found that commuter and recreational cycling in Iowa generates more than $400 million in economic activity in the state and $87 million in health savings.
The Bike EAP will be funded by TransNet, the regional half-cent sales tax for transportation approved by San Diego County voters. TransNet funding will be leveraged to bring in state and federal dollars so the region can complete more bike projects and reap even greater economic, health, and mobility benefits. By dedicating local funds for bike projects, the region will be well-positioned to compete for outside funding. SANDAG will maximize funding opportunities from other sources by moving all the bike projects toward construction on a rolling timeline, so at any given time there would be shovel-ready projects.
The Bike EAP is the culmination of many years of planning efforts and the result of extensive public outreach. It builds on Riding to 2050: The San Diego Regional Bike Plan adopted in 2010 to provide a regional strategy for making the bicycle a useful form of transportation for every day travel. The EAP also helps to fulfill the vision laid out in the 2050 Regional Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy to cut greenhouse gas emissions and reduce congestion by promoting alternative transportation. In addition, the program will become an important component of San Diego Forward: The Regional Plan, which is currently under development.
Chris Kluth, Senior Active Transportation Planner
Phone: (619) 699-1952, Email: email@example.com
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