The plan considered regional goals established by the TPB Vision as well as challenges to their implementation. It also identified a range of near-term, ongoing, and long-term strategies, such as improving access to transit stops and stations, alleviating roadway bottlenecks, ensuring maintenance of the transit and roadways systems, expanding pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure, ensuring transportation accessibility for traditionally disadvantaged groups of people, concentrating growth in business and residential hubs known as Activity Centers, and developing Bus Rapid Transit and other cost-effective transit alternatives. The final report groups the strategies around three major priorities in order to inform future transportation decision-making in the National Capital Region.
The strategies mentioned in the plan that are relevant to biking include:
- Near Term Strategy 6 (Bicycle Infrastructure): Make bicycling a viable transportation choice for more people in more places by making it safer, easier and more convenient (includes more bike lanes and paths, more bike sharing, more bike parking and more workplace showers and changing rooms)
- Ongoing Strategy 6 (Traffic Regulations) : Update existing traffic laws to make roadways safer for all users, especially bicyclists and pedestrians; increase enforcement of traffic laws; increase public information on the "rules of the road". This element includes advice to lower vehicle speeds where cyclists are most likely to ride, 3-foot passing laws, higher penalties for drivers who injure or kill vulnerable users and most surprisingly, changing laws to allow cyclists to enter intersections ahead of motorized traffic (which sounds very Idaho stoppy to me).
- Near Term Strategy 4 (Commuter Alternatives): Encourage commuters to use travel modes that make efficient use of limited road space
- Near Term Strategy 1 (Access to Transit): Providing bike share near transit
They also have survey results. The surveys show little support for the bicycle strategies. Bicycle Infrastructure ranked as the least supported strategy out of 15 and Traffic Regulations was 3rd from last. Commuter Alternatives and Access to Transit were 6th and 4th respectively. Only 27% supported Additional Dedicated Funding for Bicycle Infrastructure, ahead of only Traffic Regulations (19%). For what kind of information campaigns people wanted to see, bicycle and safety campaigns ranked very low.
The same meeting included a briefing on the updated list of Priority Regional Bicycle and Pedestrian Projects Recommendations for 2015-2020. The major changes since the last list was created in September of 2012 include
Three projects were completed:
1. US 15 Trail Tunnel (City of Frederick)
2. Holmes Run Greenways Shared-Use Path (City of Alexandria)
3. Regional Bike Sharing (Capital Bikeshare)
Four new projects were added to the list:
1. East Street Rails with Trails (City of Frederick)
2. Van Dorn/Beauregard Bicycle Facility (City of Alexandria)
3. Atlantic Boulevard Corridor Bicycle and Pedestrian Improvements (Loudoun County)
4. US Bike Route 1 Signing Project (Northern Virginia)
You can see the list of top priority unfunded projects by jurisdiction at this link starting on page 3. I'll highlight a few of the closer in ones
- DC - Met Branch Trail, Fort Totten to Takoma section
- Montgomery County - MacArthur Blvd Bikeway improvements segment 3 (from Oberlin Avenue to DC Line)
- PG County - Rhode Island Avenue Trolley Trail extension (This trail will extend the existing segment of the Trolley Trail that was constructed by the City of College Park. It will provide bike and pedestrian access through several residential communities and to the Riverdale Park Town Center. It will also connect to the Northwest Branch Trail.)
- Alexandria - Van Dorn/Beauregard Bicycle Facility (This facility would provide a north-south connection to the City's Holmes Run Trail, running east-west, and connect bicycle users to Mark Center.)
- Arlington County - Arlington Boulevard Pedestrian and Bikeway Improvements (This project provides for design and implementation of a series of bicycle and pedestrian safety and access improvements to the shared-use trail that parallels Arlington Boulevard.)
- Northern Virginia - US Bike Route 1 Signing in Northern Virginia (This project is to install route and wayfinding signage along 50 miles of U.S. Bicycle Route 1, a national AASHTO bicycle route which runs from the state line at the 14th street bridge in Arlington through the City of Alexandria, Fairfax County and Prince William County before exiting the NOVA District on Fleetwood Drive at the southern boundary of Prince William County)