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I filled out this survey. I appreciated the opportunity, and I thought in general it was good, but one thing I noted is that "add more trails," "add more bike lanes," and "improve connected bike network" were similar and in some cases overlapped. "Improve condition of existing infrastructure" wasn't far behind in terms of results, and perhaps with a survey composed differently, could have been nearer the top. There really are some less-than-ideal (even unsafe) areas on some of the infrastructure.

Counter to that is 83% saying they are satisfied with the conditions of the trails. I have seen plenty of comments on the Washington Area Bike Forum about unsafe trail conditions, so I don't think I'm alone in my feelings there; maybe that 17% is the type of person who comments about these sort of things. Or maybe people were being appreciative of Arlington's generally very good response to downed trees and similar hazards on the trails.


Sounds like the respondents were currently occasional riders. They almost certainly are not riding when there is snow on the trails, nor are they out early the morning after a storm has downed a tree. In contrast to WABF denizens. And they are likely riding slowly enough some of the other trail hazards and discomforts are less significant.

I'm sure that is part of it. Also, there is a differentiation between temporary hazards that can be dealt with easily, and more permanent ones that require a more expensive fix.

For instance, the narrow, blind curve at the bottom of the S turn over Lee Highway on the Custis has been talked about, but it's a difficult, expensive fix. Repaving bumpier sections is in the middle, with some sections repaved and some seemingly never going to be paved. But they're good at getting downed trees taken care of, and they get kudos for experimenting with plowing snow.

They are also responsive to alerts of problems. The day after a street snow plow cut through a portion of the trail on the downhill to Roslyn, they responded and said they'd do a temporary fix, with a more permanent possible. They did the temporary fix immediately; never did the permanent one (2+ years).

A mixed bag, but it's hard to be churlish and complain too much, considering how lucky we are compared to some.

What a horrible chart. Educate drivers has 414, but the bar is shorter than the 327 of improving existing infrastructure.

The cover photo is from Seattle:


I can spot that damp pavement anywhere!

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