Big efforts are already underway in 2017 and we wanted to tell you about some of the campaigns we are pursuing this year. Here are some of our key initiatives:
- Wasatch Bike Plan – We are working to build an interconnected network of bicycle facilities by increasing the number of communities along the Wasatch Front with active transportation plans that are actively being implemented.
- Statewide Bicycle Master Plan – There have been early discussions about creating one geographic information system (GIS) map where all state, regional, and local active transportation are included. This system will get the entire state on the same page when it comes to active transportation planning and implementation in Utah. It will also help in identifying system gaps and critical connections.
- US Bicycle Route System – Plans are already in the works to designate new routes across Utah.
- Local Advocacy – One of the things holding back active transportation in Utah is a lack of local advocacy organizations to address the need for on-street changes. We are developing opportunities for these groups to get up and running.
- Driver Education – We are in the process of revising the bicycle portion of the Utah Driver’s Education curriculum. In addition, we are creating a Bicycle Friendly Driver training program and hope to work with agencies, such as UTA and UDOT, on implementation.
- More Public Input – Implement active transportation citizen committees in UDOT Regions 1, 3, and 4 to provide input on state roadway projects that may influence bicycling (The Region 2 Bikes & Roadways Committee has been going strong for over a year)
- More Dirt Trails – In 2017, we are hosting another Bike Park Tour to educate communities about how to implement their own parks. We are also supporting the development of the Salt Lake Valley Trails Society so they can get more trails built around Salt Lake County.
- Promote the Benefits of Bicycling – Utah’s Active Transportation Benefits Study is almost complete. This study will quantify the economic, environmental, and health benefits that bicycling and walking bring to the state of Utah.
- Bicycle Ambassador Program – In partnership with Salt Lake County, the Bicycle Ambassador Program is ramping up. The Ambassadors are doing public outreach and facilitating trainings to get more people riding more often.
- Youth Bicycle Education – The Youth Bicycle Education and Safety Training Program is going strong. We continue toward our goal of educating 3,000 kids across Utah about bicycle safety and getting them excited about riding.
- Educating Public Officials – Our series of Mobile Active Transportation Tours will continue in 2017. Through these tours we educate planners, engineers, and elected officials as to how they can make their own communities better for bicycling.
As you can see, there is no shortage of opportunities to grow all types of bicycling across Utah. There will be numerous opportunities for people to be more involved in these efforts and we will be sure to let you know when we can use support from our members and contacts.
If you aren’t already on our email list, sign up at www.bikeutah.org to stay in the loop.