Bikeways Program Overview
Takoma Park is working to improve and maintain bicycle facilities while promoting a bicycle-friendly culture in the city. Objectives of the Bikeways Program include:
- Ensure existing facilities are regularly maintained and improved to meet modern standards of safety and convenience.
- Plan for future facilities that the City maintains on its properties, parks, and rights-of-way.
- Leverage Takoma Park’s physical strengths and existing public interest in bicycling to encourage local residents and employees to bike for commuting, errands, and recreation.
- Educate City, County, and State decision-makers about bicycling in Takoma Park with data and studies.
- Coordinate with external agencies and jurisdictions on bicycle planning and projects that impact residents, employees, and visitors in Takoma Park.
The City maintains signed, on-street bike routes connecting commercial districts, the Takoma Park Community Center, and transit facilities with regional trails. Use the updated 2019 Takoma Park Bike Map (PDF) to plan your route, available for free from public buildings and bike shops in the city. To promote cycling, the City coordinates the annual Bike To Work Day and Bike to School Day events.
In 2013, Takoma Park submitted a Bicycle Friendly Community application to the League of American Bicyclists. The City was designated an ‘honorable mention’, and provided a Feedback Report (PDF) from the League, recommending steps to become more bike friendly.
In addition to regular programming in FY19, the following projects are underway:
- Advance engineering design plans for the New Hampshire Avenue Bikeway to 60% Design
- Coordinate with Montgomery County Planning Department on the implementation of the new Bicycle Master Plan.
- The City installed 18 sharrows through the Community Center parking lot and up Cedar Avenue to highlight a route to the Takoma Metro. Sharrow is short for “shared use arrow” are comprised of a green bounding box with a white bicycle symbol, following the new national standard. Sharrows are typically installed on streets that are lower stress with less vehicular traffic and that are too narrow for traditional bike lanes. The sharrows are meant to highlight Cedar Avenue as a bike route, recommended in the Montgomery County Bike Master Plan, and increase visibility for cyclists.
- Installation 1/4-mile of new bike lanes along East-West Highway (MD-410) as part of the Ethan Allen Gateway Streetscape project.
- Extend the Met Branch Trail from Piney Branch Road NW to Takoma Avenue (DDOT) MBT Eastern Avenue, Full 100% Plans
The City has seven Capital Bikeshare stations in Takoma Park connecting to those in nearby Silver Spring and Washington D.C. Pick up one of the iconic red bikes in the city and ride to any of Capital Bikeshare’s 370+ stations in the Metropolitan Washington area!
Takoma Park is participating in Montgomery County’s dockless bikeshare and scooter “demonstration pilot program” with several companies. In the Spring of 2019, the County expanded the dockless program to include dockless e-scooters as well. This began in March 2019 and is expected to run for six months with an option for extension of the program.
Dockless bikeshare does not rely on fixed bike stations. Customers use a mobile phone app to locate a nearby bike with GPS. Bikes and scooters should not block sidewalks or driveways when not in use. Montgomery County has more information on-line, including ways to contact County staff and/or the bikeshare companies if there are problems:
MCDOT welcomes feedback about the program or about a specific company: email@example.com or contact MC311 either online or by calling 311 from within Montgomery County or 240-777-0311 from outside the County, Monday through Friday from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. Or, follow MC311 on Twitter @311MC311. If a bikeshare company is unresponsive to concerns, please file complaints through the Montgomery County 311 system so they may be documented.
City staff welcomes suggestions from business associations, neighborhood groups, and Council-appointed boards and committees on bikeway projects.
Housing and Community Development
Bikeways Program Activities
- Improve and maintain safety, comfort, and legibility of existing City-maintained bikeways, with a focus on neighborhood circulation and connections to regional bikeways and transit.
- Plan and install new bikeway facilities on City maintained rights-of-way and properties
- Promoting, encouraging, and educating residents on confident and safe bicycle riding, including:
- Liaise with Montgomery County DOT on inter-jurisdictional Capital Bikeshare program
- Conduct annual bike counts at locations in the City (Sept./Oct.)
- Review and comment on county and state bicycle master plans.
- Review and comment on WMATA projects affecting bicycle access to Takoma Metro Station and DDOT projects that connect with bikeways in Takoma Park (e.g. Metropolitan Branch Trail)
- Liaise with the Takoma Park Safe Roadways Committee (currently renaming) on funding and implementation of bike/pedestrian projects
Bikeways Program Budget and Funding
The following funding is devoted to bicycle projects in Takoma Park in FY19:
|$66,000||Bike Lanes - Ethan Allen Gateway Streetscape Project FY18||State Grant|
|$20,000||Bike Route Maintenance and Improvements -- annual||City Budget|
|$15,000||iCan Shine Bike Camp -- annual||City Budget|
|$240,000||New Ave Bikeway 60% Design||State Grant|
|TBD||Safe Routes To School annual Programming||Federal Highway Administration|
Funding in the City’s Capital Improvements Program is also being used to develop plans for the Ethan Allen Gateway Streetscape project, which includes bike lanes for the 1/4 mile project area.
The City has been awarded external funding for bikeway projects from the following sources:
- MDOT Bikeways Program Grant (design and construction)
- Maryland SHA Safe Routes to School (education and construction)
- FHWA Transportation Alternatives (design and construction)
- MWCOG Transportation Land Use Technical Assistance (planning and design)