What ever happened to the rails with trails idea. This seems like an incredibly affordable way to improve traffic. lets do this.  http://www.capmetro.org/docs/tod/RWT-Study.pdf

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Matt Matt almost 5 years ago

As a bicycle commuter I would definitely use the trail and sincerely hope that CapMetro does spend money on this very useful project.  Don't assume that your situation is the same as everyone else's. 

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Iona x almost 5 years ago

It doesn't really make sense to tell someone not to have an opinion. That's kind of the point of this forum. So let's just lay out the assumptions you've assumed I assumed.

First, I don't assume everyone's situation is exactly the same as mine, just that statistically it is absolutely true that most people do not live within reasonable biking distance to the rail line. Thus, I argue that not enough people would benefit from it to make it worth the amoun tof money it costs.

Anyone who lives between the Crestview station and downtown doesn't need it, for one thing, because there are dozens of safe bike routes in that area. North of Crestview, the trail is only close to a small fraction of people. Get too far away from the rail line and it is not appealing as a bike route. Get too far north and there are few people who, even if they lived close to the line, would take that much time to commute to work.

Also, city planners and motorists tend to see projects like this as a cure-all for bicycle commuters, when what is really needed and worth the money is building infrastructure on existing streets that provides visul and physical protection for cyclists. Metric Boulevard is a great bike route... until you get to 183. Just build a safe route across 183 and that problem is solved, and there are plenty of safe streets on the other side. Permer lane is a pretty effective route to metric from some points North, but is could use some safety enhancesments, especially at the intersection with MoPac.

Would a trail next to the red line be nice? Sure, but it's not worth the money. Money is needed elsewhere to support the larger cycling and potential cycling community.

Maybe if they put bike share stations with parking areas along the route  it would be more useful. Then they would actually be reaching people who might not otherwise consider bicycle commuting at all. They might get some people out of their cars.

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Matt Matt almost 5 years ago

"North of Crestview, the trail is only close to a small fraction of people"

1.  But it is close to major employers, such as IBM, Pickle, the Domain, etc. 

2.  North of Crestview (north of I83) is seeing significant development (North Burnet/Gateway), and will continue to have more people/jobs moving in there.

"statistically it is absolutely true that most people do not live within reasonable biking distance to the rail line"

Using this logic, we'd never build anything.  As no one route is going to be close to a majority fo people.

"there are dozens of safe bike routes in that area"

Not separated from the roadways there aren't.  Personally, I'm comfortable riding with traffic, but not everyone is.  Without separated bikeways, there's a limit on how many people will bike.

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Iona x almost 5 years ago

No one route will be close to everyone, but multiple, lower-cost projects would reach more people. Yes the rail line is close to employers, but there are already existing bike routes to those areas. They just need to build safe crossings for major highways. Improved crossings paired with wider bike lanes/shoulders on major routes would cost less than building a separate trail the whole way. Actually, as it turns out, much of the project is kind of a hybrid between existing roads and spearate pathways, so if someone isn't comfortable riding in traffic he is out of luck. That's part of the skill set you have to acquire just like you have to overcome the initial nervousness of driving in traffic. After looking at the ranking of priorities for the segments of the trail I am actually more in agreement with it than I initially thought, so I retract my original comment.

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Woodley almost 5 years ago

If there was a Hike and Bike trail parallel to the tracks I would use it definitely!

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Iona x almost 5 years ago

It is not currently planned to run directly parallel to the tracks. That would be a huge advantage as it would be a very flat route, but would require lots of bridge construction that would probably not be economically feasible.

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Gina P almost 5 years ago

Rails w/Trails - good idea - work on it.

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David Wright over 4 years ago

This could be very useful. I used to work at a company over by lakeline station. I used the metrorail or express buses to get to lakeline but from there I had 2 options to get to work. I could walk 2 miles AROUND a giant forest (lakeline to parmer to the little side rd my work was at) OR I could walk along the tracks (not on them nor anywhere close to danger unless the train derailed and if that happend me walking is the least of anyone's concerns i think) for about 1/4 mile. BIG difference. I was told technically that was illegal because it was trespassing since the owners of the rail tracks owned that property and I ahve been told in the past by police once up in ohio the same thing when I used to walk along the tracks to cut about 1/2 mile from my walk. So if cap metro did this it would make that a legal options and convient... or they could modify the 383 or 214 bus route to cover that chunk of land over there but i doubt that would happen even though they would searve about 30 more business and easily 500+ more people and it would only add maybe 5-10 min to whichever route they modified.

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Kathleen Houlihan about 4 years ago

Yes! bike lanes along train tracks...lets make this happen!

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