Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

Spartan

Spartanburg Bicycle & Pedestrian Master Plan

7 posts in this topic

The City and County are partnering to create a Bicycle & Pedestrian Master Plan. This is fantastic news. Its still in the early stages, so at this point we don't know much. Right now they have a survey (see link below). Please take the survey. Public input is CRITICAL to any planning process. The process is being facilitated by the consulting group Greenways, Inc. My understanding is that its being funded through the Mary Black Foundation, the City of Spartanburg, and Spartanburg County.

Groups working to implement the plan:

City of Spartanburg

Spartanburg County

SPATS (Spartanburg Area Transportation Study)

Partners for Active Living

Links:

Bicycle & Pedestrian Master Plan Survey

Greenways, Inc. Project Website

----

I will add that I've already taken the survey. I think its a useful survey, though I wish there were some boxes for an open-ended response. The main problem with walking and biking in Spartanburg is that the buildings are designed for drivers, not pedestrians. Once Spartanburg embraces the concept of creating places for people, rather than their cars, Spartanburg can and will become a walkable place. We have entire too many buildings that while located near neighborhoods, you can't actually walk to them. To that end, the sidewalks in this city are not adequate. The presence of sidewalks is not enough to call a place walkable. Its not comfortable to walk down East Main Street with cars whizzing by at 45 mph. Sidewalks need to be set back from the curb, and street trees need to be planted in the area between. The concept is called complete streets.

Biking is in a similar situation. Bike lanes are not being provided in locations that make sense. They should be build on high volume streets like East Main, WO Ezell Bvld, Reidville Rd, Pine St, etc where you would not feel comfortable riding in mixed traffic. The lanes that are on Hampton Street and Spring St are necessary because of the comparatively low volume of traffic. Bike lanes need to be implemented in a consistent, logical manner. Right now, that is not happening. The other problem is that the "wide outside lanes" need to be more than two feet wide. The County has maps that illustrate these bikeable routes all across the county with a usable shoulder. While you can technically bike on them, having two feet is not enough for a cyclist. Four feet (or more) should be the goal.

Another issue that impacts both bikes and pedestrians is connectivity. Right now there is none. We need new streets to create more intersections that will disperse traffic and provide more route choices for all modes of transportation- bikes, pedestrians, and drivers.

Finally, land use and urban design must be recognized as a way to make things happen. Its not all about sidewalks and bike lanes. If the places you want to walk to don't feel right, you won't walk there. Think about walking around Morgan Square versus walking around Dorman Center. Which place would you rather walk around?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Thanks for posting this Spartan. I've taken the survey also and encourage everyone to spend the few minutes it takes to complete this. i would agree that the survey could have been improved a bit, but - there are two important benefits that this project gains from your input:

1) the specific suggestions that you make will be documented and considered - that's important because we are the ones who live here and use these roads and know the problems

2) the higher the number of people who take the survey - the more weight this plan carries in the future. There are plenty of naysayers who still believe that bike/ped issues are niche issues. Having a surprisingly high response rate for the survey makes a strong statement that this community cares about this issue.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're right. I just hope that people understand the issue. Its sometimes frustrating to talk about "walking" to people back home because by and large they don't think about walking or biking as a mode of transportation. For that matter most people don't think of these modes of transportation that way. Thats why this is so important to me. Does anyone know if there will be public meetings, or if this ties in to the County Comprehensive plan?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks for the link Spartan. I did the survey and thought it did a decent job of hitting the key issues. My main 3 intersections were Main and Pine, Church and St. John and Church and Main. The 3 key streets were Main St., N. Church St. and Asheville highway.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah it did do a good job. I might have been overly critical about the survey. I just like to ramble about things like this, so I need space to do it :)

Mine were Main & Pine, Church & Asheville Hwy, and Main & St John.

Its hard to pick just 3 intersections, but I hope that Church & Asheville Hwy get the #1 spot. That intersection is confusing enough for drivers, so try riding your bike through there :ph34r:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
You're right. I just hope that people understand the issue. Its sometimes frustrating to talk about "walking" to people back home because by and large they don't think about walking or biking as a mode of transportation. For that matter most people don't think of these modes of transportation that way. Thats why this is so important to me. Does anyone know if there will be public meetings, or if this ties in to the County Comprehensive plan?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.