Did you know? It has been 15 years since Placer County Transportation Planning Agency (PCTPA) developed the first Regional Bikeway Plan for Placer County. This plan was a joint effort spearheaded by PCTPA, and members of the Bicycle Advisory Committee which included representatives from the cities of Rocklin, Roseville, Lincoln, Auburn, and Colfax, the town of Loomis and the County of Placer. The Bikeway Plan allowed for the creation of a county-wide bikeway system connecting Placer communities across the region. Having this plan in place allowed Placer County and the cities to seek state funding for bikeway projects.
Since the original Bikeway Plan’s launch, Placer County has experienced exponential population growth. The number of bicyclists has grown accordingly; the number of residents commuting to work by bike has increased 39% since 2010. Last year’s May is Bike Month (MIBM) had more than 1,200 Placer residents participate! The increase in bicycle ridership includes those who use their bikes for recreation in addition to those who commute to work and school. As the number of cyclists grows, so does the need for an updated bikeway system throughout the Placer region.
PCTPA is currently working with Placer County Public Works to update the 2002 Regional Bikeway Plan. This plan will identify the gaps in our current bikeway system and recommend improvements specific to unincorporated Placer County communities and roadways. The Regional Bikeway Plan will also address key regional connections between local cities and the County of Sacramento.
“The 2002 Regional Bikeway Plan is a solid starting point, but the Placer region has definitely changed over the past 15 years” said Aaron Hoyt, Associate Planner with PCTPA. “The County and PCPTA are looking forward to working with the community to develop a comprehensive bikeway system.”
By completing the update this year, PCTPA will put Placer County in a better position to compete in next year’s 2018 round of state grant funding. During that time, the County and cities can apply for grant funding from programs such as the Caltrans Active Transportation Program (ATP). The plan is envisioned to identify a list or package of projects that could competitively compete in the ATP.
“As with all transportation projects PCTPA’s goal is to make sure our Region is perfectly positioned to compete for any and all available funding opportunities,” said Hoyt. “A solid Regional Bikeway plan is an important first step to secure funding for improvements.”
As a part of the Regional Bikeway Plan Update, PCTPA will be reaching out to the community for your input – including residents, cycling clubs, cyclists, and non-cyclists alike who want to see improvements to bikeways in our County. During the coming months, we will be asking for your thoughts on potential improvements such as new bikeway connections, safety improvements, and signage or other amenities that could be included in the plan update.
PCTPA obtained funding for the Regional Bikeway Plan Update from a combination of Caltrans Rural Planning Assistance and local transportation funds. By completing this update, PCTPA will better position Placer County to seek grant funding for the bikeway projects that will fill the gaps in the Placer bicycle network. We welcome you to be a part of the update – sign up for email updates here and stay tuned!