An Angry, Yet Rational Transportation Thoroughfare Plan Open House

At first I wasn’t going to go to the Thoroughfare Plan Open House (Thursday 9/30, 6pm) because I didn’t see any mention of bikes. I thought that I had done my civic duty by attending the bike plan meetings. Well, apparently there is a special plan rolled into the Thoroughfare plan: the road diet of Abram from Cooper to Collins. It will mean bike lanes and on-street parking for downtown. Great right?

Unfortunately a few businesses on Abram don’t see it that way. They are planning to attend Thursday’s meeting to let our elected officials know they oppose any such progress.

Upon hearing this I got angry. And I cleared my busy playboy calendar so I could attend to show my support for the Abram St road diet, on-street parking and bike lanes.

I would like to see you clear your busy calendars as well, my Bike Friendly people, and show your support for bike lanes by coming to the second floor of City Hall on Thursday 9/30 at 6pm.

When you get there, please feel free to:
-Mark on the maps with your comments and support for the bike lanes on Abram St;
-Talk with council people about your support for the street diet;
-Engage representatives from the opposition, letting them know that bike activity would increase business, not take away from it.

If you feel the need to arm yourself with some talking points, you can glean a few from these studies:
http://www.emilydrennen.org/TrafficCalming_full.pdf & http://www.emilydrennen.org/research_trans.shtml
http://www.ceosforcities.org/work/walkingthewalk (more on home values but good stuff for sure)
http://onlinepubs.trb.org/onlinepubs/circulars/ec019/Ec019_i5.pdf
http://www.vtpi.org/walkability.pdf
http://www.americawalks.org/resources/benefitsofawalkablecommunity/ (number of studies here)
http://www.americantrails.org/resources/economics/index.html (number of studies here)

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  1. Chow

    When does bike friendly arlington meet?

    • pawel

      We don’t have a regular meeting time. When we do meet there’s usually an announcement through the blog and Facebook group. We’ve got a Field Day event this Saturday. You can check out the precious blog post for details.

  2. a friend

    you can see what they’re saying at http://www.sosarlingtonstreets.com/

    • Pawel

      Thanks! I’ll have to come up with a post for that. Looks like they put the council people up there, saving me some time with doing the same.

  3. TymT

    Next:

    Town Hall Meeting
    Join us as we review and discuss draft recommendations of the Thoroughfare Development Plan Update regarding a Proposed City-Wide Thoroughfare Plan & its Impact on Abram Street (effect on Abram from Collins to Cooper Streets)

    Tuesday, October 19 at 5:30 p.m.
    At the First Baptist Church, Arlington Fellowship Hall
    300 Pecan Street, Downtown Arlington

    I snipped this from an Arlington Tea Party email dated 10/17:

    “We’ve now canvassed all of Abram Street from Fielder to Collins, and likewise covered Main Street and side streets, in an effort to collect as many email addresses as possible. Of the businesses we’ve spoken with, opposition to this plan is running close to 95%. Ongoing surveys at several businesses have produced a similar response among customers and employees.

    There are many reasons why we and others think the plan to switch from five to two lanes will seriously harm property owners, businesses, and ordinary citizens who use Abram Street for any purpose-be it destination shopping or simply getting from one point to another.

    You should have received the following notice from the Downtown Arlington Management Corporation, but we wanted to be sure no one was missed.

    Please attend this meeting. We hope someone from the City’s Community Development and Planning Dept. will be there to answer your questions.

    ATP staff: There seems to be a lot of goofy things coming out of the city planning department, we don’t think they have the best bang for the buck theory going on down there we urge you all to be there and study this porposal. Who does this project benifit and who profits?”

    95% huh? Is this the feedback BFA is getting from area business or more backwards tea party ideals?




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