City Proposes Network of Bike Lanes, Wants Feedback 

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A draft of the Richmond’s bicycle master plan released today proposes a network of bike lanes connecting points north, south, east and west to downtown Richmond.

The plan, which has been in the works for nearly a year, also includes proposals for new shared lane markings, trails and bike-walk streets, also referred to as bicycle boulevards, which allow local car traffic but funnel through traffic off onto surrounding streets.

You should really just look at the map, but some of the highlights include:

  • Northside: North Avenue from Brook Road to East Ladies Mile Road and Fendell Avenue from North Avenue down to Yancee Street would be converted into bike-walk streets. Buffered bike lanes would be installed on Hermitage Road from Lakeside Avenue to Broad Street and a parallel route on Brook Road from Ginter Park to downtown. The plan also envisions the connection of the Cannon Creek Greenway to downtown.

  • West End: Buffered bike lanes would run down Grove and Patterson avenues. In the Fan and Museum Districts the plan incorporates the already proposed bike-walk streets for Floyd Avenue.

  • South of the James: Bike lanes are proposed for Forest Hill, Semmes and Bainbridge avenues. Protected bike lanes would run along Jahnke and Warwick roads.

  • East End: The plan would convert Marshall into a bike-walk street. Stony Run Road would get a bike/pedestrian path. Bike lanes along Williamsburg and Government roads would connect Fulton to Church Hill.

  • Downtown: Buffered bike lanes are already planned to follow Oliver Hill Way and North 18th Street into Shockoe Bottom. Likewise, the plan incorporates the already proposed bike tracks on Franklin and Main streets from Monroe Park to the Capitol. The plan proposes buffered bike lanes along First and Second streets.

In a fun change of pace for Richmond, with a city website that is of, well, an earlier era, the plan’s release comes in the form of an interactive map that invites residents to leave comments and propose alternate routes.

In an email, Jake Helmboldt, the city’s pedestrian and bicycle coordinator, says the city wants to know about bad intersections, any critical streets or destinations the plan misses and whether the proposed infrastructure is adequate.

The city is holding an open house on the plan on May 14 at the Carillon in Byrd Park between 6 and 8 p.m. Attendees are encouraged to register in advance, Helmboldt says.

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