Tuesday March 13, 2007
City officials, planners and cyclists converge in D.C. to learn from Louisville’s cycling progress, urge funding support
Mayor Jerry Abramson will share Louisville’s cycling successes with city leaders from across the nation tomorrow at Think: Bike!, the National Bike Summit in Washington, D.C. The League of American Bicyclists hosts the summit and asked the mayor to deliver a keynote address to share how Louisville met its goal of achieving an official “Bike-Friendly” designation two years ahead of plan.
In the two years since the Louisville Bicycle Summit and the creation of the Mayor’s Bicycle Task Force, the city has six times more dedicated bike lanes on Louisville roadways and has begun construction on several improvement projects for key intersections, roadways and trails. The City of Parks 100-mile greenway around Louisville also is well underway with one-quarter of the trail to be connected this year.
“We’re ahead of pace in meeting our goals to become as bicycle-friendly as we can be,” Abramson said, “and we’re going to maintain an aggressive timetable for these projects, because we know that cycling is important as transportation and recreation as well as exercise and healthy living.”
The city’s bicycle priorities for the coming year include creating up to 20 more miles of bike lanes across Louisville, beginning a project to improve bicycle and vehicle traffic flow on River Road, and securing funding to build a downtown “Bike Station.” The station would be an indoor facility where bicycle commuters and downtown visitors could securely park their bikes, shower, and change clothes before walking or riding the bus to their destination.
At the National Bike Summit, Abramson will encourage the nation’s city leaders and cycling advocates to work collectively to raise awareness among federal officials about the importance of cycling projects.
“Cities are all going to be competing for the same federal dollars to pay for projects like these. If the size of the pie doesn’t increase to match increased demand, important programs will not get funded,” Abramson said. “City leaders and cyclists must speak with one voice to national leadership on the importance of these issues, to ensure that they receive the consistent support they deserve – for a Bicycle-Friendly America.”
For more on Louisville’s cycling projects visit www.LouisvilleKy.gov/BikeLouisville.