[More bankruptcy posts]
The new year, a great time for looking back at what happened and measuring it up.
Here's the look ahead from last year. Not everything expected actually happened (the MacArthur Avenue Bikeway is still unstarted) and much of it was late (like CaBi expansion in May and completion of the Silver Spring Transit Center) but still there was some significant progress made.
Here is my list of the 10 biggest Washington area bicycle stories of 2011
Capital Bikeshare - From the Winter Warrior contests to the Living Social user boom; from dockblocking to expansion, from NPS not allowing it on the Mall to welcoming it on the Mall, the wild success of Capital Bikeshare and the public interest in it has made it the story of 2011. Sometimes it felt like I was writing a CaBi blog.
Crashes - It was a weird year for crashes and some of them got a lot of publicity, especially along the Mount Vernon Trail. The intersection of the MVT, the Custis Trail and Lynn had several public crashes, as did the connector trail to Memorial Bridge and its intersection at the GW Parkway. There were only 4 local bike traffic fatalities - one involved a cyclist hitting a pedestrian - down from 8 in 2010. But there were 3 other fatalities - one cyclist was hit by a falling tree branch on a trail, one fell off her bike on a trail and hit her head, and one had a heart attack during a triathlon.
Pedicab crackdown - This year the Park Police started to crack down on pedicab operators for violations that brought them into conflct with the now-defunct tourmobile and violations of unclear or non-existent rules. It rose to the level that Del. Norton involved and DDOT moved forward with new regulations for them.
Anacostia Trails - Several sections of the Anacostia trail system in both DC and Maryland opened or advanced this year. This includes a section from the DC boundary to Blandensburg Waterfront Park, a section on the east bank from the 11th Street bridge to the CSX Railroad tracks, a bridge connecting Diamond Teague Park to Yards Park and the widened sidewalk along Maine Avenue. In addition, the Navy Yard Promenade opened to the public (no biking allowed) and work is well along on the 11th Street Bridge and the FRB Bridges (aka Osprey and Wetlands) despite a delay caused by nesting birds.
Trail Planning - DDOT and/or NPS made progress on 4 major trail projects. The year started with the release of the final EA for the Klingle Trail. In the fall, the FHWA released the FONSI for Phase II of the Met Branch Trail, moving that project along. And at the very end of the year, NPS and DDOT released the EA for the NE section of the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail and NPS the EA for the rebuild of the Rock Creek Park Trail.
Attack on Transportation Funding - This is really a national story, but it - as well as plans to roll back Safe Routes to Schools, Recreational Trails, CMAQ and other programs that fund biking - could mean dramatic changes for the DC area and funding availability for bicycle projects. In addition the mandatory sidepath rule "reared its ugly head" again. Conservatives and Republicans tried to belittle the programming by choosing silly-sounding projects - and misrepresenting what they do, as well as including programs that were denied TE funding. Of course, the new House bill makes ending TE Funding seem like nothing.