On September 1, 2015 a room full of over 200 community members came out to hear about and weigh in on the City’s upcoming bikeway projects. The public comment period and successive rounds of clapping during the presentation made clear that the vast majority of those in attendance were in strong support of more bikeways. Click here for the City’s full presentation. The highlights from the meeting:
Getting projects on the ground
- South Street 2-way protected bike lane to be installed by the end of 2015
- Commitment to install at least one protected bike lane project per year (King 2014, South 2015, 2016 TBD, 2017 TBD, 2018 TBD, you get the point)
- Ward Ave 2-way protected bike lane – conceptual design complete, possible construction 2016
- McCully St bike lanes (conventional) – possible construction 2016
- Halekauwila St 2-way protected bike lanes – conceptual design complete, to be implemented as part of rail construction
- Pensacola St 2-way protected bike lanes – being considered, if selected construction it would be implemented with the planned resurfacing
Protected Bike Lane Network Plan
The above highlighted projects are the initial pieces of what will become a full grid network of protected bike lanes between Chinatown and Kaimuki. While HBL is pushing for a bigger reach and more lanes (see below), the plan is a great start in getting us to the Minimum Grid we truly need.
King Street – the numbers tell it all
The City’s presentation started with a review of various data being collected to evaluate the King Street protected bike lanes. While we’ve all seen the positive changes with our own eyes, the data shows these as objective facts:
- Bringing cycling to the masses – 88% increase in bicycle ridership
- Like voodoo magic for getting riders off the sidewalk – 67% riding on sidewalk before, 7% after
- All for less than a minute inconvenience – average delay for someone driving the 2 miles from Alapai to Isenberg during afternoon rush hour is around 30 seconds
Minimum Grid – You Support
Everything sounds great, yeah!?! Now we just sit back and wait for the City to do their work. As demonstrated by the plan and list of near-term projects, the City wants to do this. But the reality is that there will be push back.
The truth is it’s not going to happen without all of us pushing. And pushing hard. Going to meetings. Speaking up. Writing our elected officials. Convincing our neighbors. Getting friends riding. Organizing. Speaking as one to make our voices stronger.
And in all this, we need to demand MORE. We need to make cycling truly accessible to everyone on Oahu. Those from ages 8 to 80, those from Waianae to Waimanalo. Here are just a few things you can do to be involved:
- Add your name to Minimim Grid supporters
- Get the facts on why protected bike lanes are needed so you can make the argument
- Join HBL – our numbers are our strength
- Get involved in your local advocacy group
- Contact the Mayor, Governor, your councilmember, and your legislators to tell them this is needed
- Write a letter to the editor
- Convince a co-worker, neighbor, family member. And get them riding!