The city of Albany held a public workshop Tuesday to present its Draft Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan.
The 90-minute Zoom session provided an opportunity for residents to review existing bicycle infrastructure and current bike and pedestrian recommendations. With an exhaustive listing of proposals for various city streets, there are many possibilities to consider.
Zack Powell is the city's project manager for the Bicycle-Pedestrian Master Plan. He says the Master Plan, funded by the city and the Capital District Transportation Committee, is a huge document, and a work in progress.
- Click HERE to view the draft Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan.
Meritxell Font with Nelson Nygaard is an expert in transit planning and multimodal network design. She outlines the plan's goals.
"...to elevate walking and bicycling as viable, viable transportation options, incentivize policymakers, law enforcement officials and roadways designers to take responsibility for including walking and bicycling as part of the transportation system. Provide people using the streets in Albany with a shared awareness of a responsibility for street safety. Help community members understand and benefit from incorporating walking and bicycling in their day to day lives. Find funding programs and prioritize walking and bicycling to create resiliency in Albany's transportation network."
Font encourages residents to read the draft plan, watch the video of her presentation, and submit comments on the plan before the December 15 deadline.
- Comments on the Plan can be submitted via email to email@example.com until December 15.
The plan embraces all forms of getting from here to there, referring to combined walking, bicycling and vehicular activities as “transportation equity.”
Font says Albany's busy and often labeled "dangerous" Central Avenue is a candidate for and could achieve transportation equity by being put on a "road diet."
"Which would mean to go from four lanes to three lanes, and then gain some space for a protected bike lane. So the reality and what we saw and what we heard that there's bicycling there, there's people walking, but all the intersections are pretty dangerous. So I mentioned the road diet, but curb extensions on the intersections, depending on the type of you know, how the bike lane would be designed on and looking, as I said, looking at really what happens collecting data at key intersections, and see what would be the best treatment there."
Font says the project is on schedule to be completed at the end of January, when a final presentation will be made before the Albany Common Council, at a date to be determined.