The City of Raleigh is building 27 additional miles of marked, on-road bicycle facilities thanks to a $1.1 million grant from the federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement program. The 27 miles of designated bike lanes and painted “sharrows” (shared-lane markings which resemble a bicycle) will be spread out among 22 proposed projects which were selected from Raleigh’s bicycle priority plan.
Raleigh’s bicycle infrastructure was in its infancy before Mayor McFarlane took office, with barely four miles of designated bike lanes or shared-lane markings in 2010. But by the end of next year, city transportation officials say at least 75 miles of Raleigh roads will have gotten bike-friendly improvements.
The improvements Raleigh has made to its bicycle infrastructure over the past few years led the League of American Bicyclists, which evaluates communities based on “bike-friendliness,” to rank Raleigh at the bronze level in 2013. While no North Carolina cities received the gold or platinum rankings, Carrboro received a silver ranking. Combined with normal funding for bicycle infrastructure and capital improvement projects, grants such as the one received from the CMAQ program will help Raleigh become the most bike-friendly community in the state.
If you’d like to join the conversation about improvements to Raleigh’s bicycle infrastructure, the meeting schedule of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Commission is available on the city’s website.