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I have to disagree. For cars, there's a mature urban road network that needs to be maintained. For bicycles, there's often significant gaps where trail construction is essential (eg WB&A bridge).

Admittedly, some, but not all, can be ameliorated by, as this says, including bike/ped accommodation in rebuilding existing infrastructure.

Making things better for bikes can go into the "fix it first mentality", especially given the better economics of supporting cycling versus cars

I totally agree. In the DC area there seems to be much more interest in redevelopment near transit than in building new suburbs. "Fix it first" might be able to support all this rebuilding. If the rebuilt roads have bike lanes, then we have a winner.

Sadly, this may add to the myth that bike lanes are only for Democrats. As more people shift away from cars, the road-building lobby is looking to Republicans to fight for more road-lobby donations via the building of more roads. The outer beltway comes to mind.

More info here: http://www.mcclatchydc.com/2013/02/03/181506/us-keeps-building-new-highways.html

Jonathon: I agree that there is a PR problem with bikes only being a Dem issue. This is why I emphasize the GOP and libertarian aspects of bikes over cars: personal freedom, not requiring massive subsidies, better use of $. If the GOPers in Red America want to build more highways, they can do so, but pay out of their own pockets.

SJE, and then when they turn around and say no more farebox recovery for the urban areas? I think it's best not to broach the argument of you want more, you pay for it because it implies we somehow win in the deal when we don't. Maintaining a rural highway is much cheaper than building an underground subway. But you are right that the cost effectiveness argument is the best approach. I would add that the cost effectiveness is two-ways, to the system and to the rider.

Broadly speaking, I think fix it first is just some pretty language in a speech. Wasn't that the same thing they said with stimulus dollars? Well, different words, but shovel-ready and fix-it-first differ exactly how? That and a number of our MUPs fall under various park authorities/agencies/etc (MVT, 4MR, WO&D, RCT, CCT, etc). Realistically it may be slightly helpful for the bridges, cycletracks, etc in the city.

This is totally unrelated, but has anyone over at OPM ever explored the idea of permitting bikeshake in leiu of Metro benefits? Granted I like having many trails to myself, I also suspect the more riders that come, the more the city and surrounding jurisdictions will pay attention to them.

T: all parties are full of hypocrisy. I just think its important to emphasize that bikes are not just a cultural choice of hippies and north east liberals, but can be consistent with the views of red-state america. Taking it out of the cultural context, into economics, makes it more amenable to data-driven decision making, and the data is on our side.

I think the trade off of farebox recovery in urban areas having to come from the urban areas is worth it. If you look at a map it's pretty clear that the potential miles of roads to nowhere is basically unlimited if we don't somehow put a cap on current trends. Whereas there's a real upper limit on how much (admittedly expensive) infrastructure you can cram into one urban area. I don't really think that dividing the country into little pieces and having each fend for itself is actually good policy, but we need some kind of disincentive to the current trend toward unbounded sprawl. Whether that ends up being self-restraint, mileage-based fees, dividing the country into little pieces, or something else, it needs to be something.

Well, different words, but shovel-ready and fix-it-first differ exactly how?

At DDOT, shovel ready meant work could begin quickly because the planning and review process was far along.

I believe that Fix it First refers to maintenance ahead of new construction.

I'm not a hippie but I'm a bike enthusiast.

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