August 14 Bicycle Friendly Community Committee Meeting
Mayor’s Car Free Challenge:
The Mayor’s car free challenge is October 6-13 and kicks off on Sunday, October 6th at the River Market. The challenge is to ditch your car for the week and walk, bike, or ride public transportation for the week which provides visibility to other transportation methods. Scorecards will be given out so that you can track your progress throughout the week and enter to win prizes and giveaway items.
The focus of this year’s car free challenge will be on pedestrian and bicycle safety. At the Saturday kickoff there will be instruction on cycling safety by representatives of the League of American Bicyclists. So show your support for a healthy and environmentally sound lifestyle by ditching your keys October 6-13. Also, soon to be released will be a Little Rock Bike/Ped cycling jersey. Show your support for Bike/Ped in Little Rock and a portion of the proceeds will be returned to the city to fund education outreach.
City Bike Projects:
Kavanaugh Sharrows – Should be complete within 30 to 60 days
S. Main – The project will let September 11th with expected completion in Fall 2013
Pinnacle Valley – Design phase is underway and the city has been in contact with the developers responsible for the enhancements to Pinnacle Valley Dr.
Broadway Bridge Re-route – The city is currently exploring options with the Arkansas State Highway and Transportation Dept. for re-routing both vehicle and bike/ped traffic during the Broadway Bridge construction
Trolley Warning Signs:
The viability and effect of installing Trolley Warning signs along Markham Ave/President Clinton Ave and along 3rd street downtown was discussed. Trolley tracks can be extremely difficult to traverse on a bicycle and should only be crossed at a 90 degree angle so that bike wheels to not get stuck in the tracks and cause an accident. The idea is to install signs demonstrating a trolley track caused accident and warning cyclists that the tracks are ahead and to proceed with caution.
There were concerns raised about the density of signs in the downtown area. The argument being that once sign density reaches a certain point that with so many signs to read they all become ineffective and are ignored. Keeping that in mind Jeremy Lewno (Bike/Ped Coordinator for the city of LR) suggested targeted location where the trolley tracks must be traversed. Six locations in total were recommended, 3 on Markham Ave and 3 on 3rd St. It was also suggested by one voting BFCC member to consider painting the warning onto the road surface instead of using signs. Jeremy and the Little Rock Traffic Dept will explore the possibility of installing the trolley warning signs or road surface warnings.
Little Rock Trails Update:
The Arkansas River Trail will be receiving new signage designating locations along the trail. Examples would be signage showing the direction towards Two Rivers Park, the Big Dam Bridge, etc.
The Parks & Recreation Dept. will also be grinding down and repaving the sections of the trail just across the Two Rivers Park Bridge that have been damaged by tree root growth. The project will hopefully be complete before the Big Dam 100 bike tour in late September.
A warning to all trail users parallel parking is no longer allowed at the Big Dam Bridge parking lot. The ruling was made by the Pulaski County Gov. (Not the City of Little Rock) at the request of the U.S. Corp of Engineers. Overflow parking is being directed to Murray Park which is half a mile east of the Big Dam Bridge. Please do not park in the bike lanes on Rebsamen Park Rd. It is illegal, dangerous to cyclists, and you will be ticketed by LRPD.
Complete Streets Committee:
The Little Rock city council has passed a motion paving the way for a “Complete Streets” mandate to eventually be adopted for the City. A Complete Streets ordinance would require that all city construction projects look to include and benefit all potential road users and not only vehicles. This would mean that all city projects would be required to look at the viability of including bike lanes, sharrows, increased pedestrian sidewalks, and/or bus stops.
Currently in the planning and development stages is a Complete Streets Committee that would advise the city on how best to implement a “Complete Streets” charter into their construction projects. The committee is currently being filled out and its scope being determined. Updates will be coming in the following months as to their progress.