The Wichita City Council Tuesday approved the Bicycle Master Plan. It recommends ways to make bicycling easier, safer and more convenient in Wichita.
A 19-member steering committee worked on the plan for two years. More than 4,000 people participated in the planning process at various meetings and events.
At the council meeting, Scott Wadle of the city's planning department outlined some of the recommendations:
- Development of a citywide network of on- and off-street bicycle facilities
- Priorities for bicycle projects, including a 10-year priority bicycle network
- Top 10 list for projects in street right-of-way
- Top priority shared use path
Committee member Barry Carroll said there are many reasons why the plan would be beneficial to the city. It would:
- Improve overall community health
- Create jobs and spur economic development
- Attract young professionals
- Increase property values adjacent to bike paths
- Provide commute opportunities
- Provide a safe way to bike and walk for recreation
The plan also recommends the creation of a bicycle and pedestrian advisory board, which the council approved.
Construction cost of the 10-year bicycle plan is estimated at $12.5 million. The city currently allocated $500,000 every other year for bicycle enhancement projects. They council anticipates they could use those funds to leverage an additional $10 million in federal funding over 10 years.