Bay Area's First Regional Bicycle Plan Being DevelopedBy Emily Drennen, Chair San Francisco BIcycle Advisory Committee

Caution: Acronyms ahead!

The Metropolitan Transportation Commission (MTC) is currently developing the Bay Area's first Regional Bicycle Plan (RBP). The RBP is intended to be a coordinating and resource document that will define a system of regionally significant routes and facilities, identify major gaps and barriers, enhance multi-modal connections, and determine 25-year funding. The proposed Regional Bike Network includes over 1,100 miles of bike facilities in the nine Bay Area counties, and will require approximately $581 million to complete.

The RBP is part of MTC's 2001 Regional Transportation Plan (RTP), which will prioritize planning and funding for the Bay Area over the next 25 years. After adoption of the RTP, which is scheduled for December, MTC will begin implementing sections of the bike plan. These projects will include: coordinating with county stakeholders and transit operators; establishing a regional bicycle working group; developing and supporting bicycle programs at MTC; and making a bicycle project "toolkit" available to local jurisdictions.

Some of the specific bike lane or bike path projects proposed in the RBP include Caesar Chavez, JFK Drive, Sunset Boulevard, Folsom Street, Howard Street, Broadway Avenue, and 3rd/4th Streets. (While actual funding is not allocated as part of this process, a funding strategy might be included in the project.)

The San Francisco Bicycle Advisory Committee (BAC) and the SFBC have been very involved in this process. SFBC Executive Director Dave Snyder has served on the RBP's oversight committee from the beginning and both the SFBC and the BAC have provided project lists, feeedback on the development of the county's bicycle route map, and other assistance to the project's coordinators.

The RBP process offers many opportunities for public participation. As of press time, the draft RBP is scheduled to be released in time for MTC's Planning and Operations Committee meeting in November. After that meeting, there will be a 30-day period for public comment. Public input can also be given as part of the Regional Transportation Plan process, scheduled to last through December 19. SFBC members can contact MTC through Trent Lethco at tlethco@mtc.ca.gov or (510) 464-7737. Updates on the RBP can be found at www.mtc.ca.gov/projects/rtp/bicycle.htm.