March 9th, 6PM, City Hall: be there to show support for this council discussion and effort. It’s a work session, so you can’t give input, but your presence at this meeting will amplify the council’s interest in bike/ped improvements in Denton. If you care at all about the future of walking and biking in Denton, you should attend and observe. The fact that this meeting is occurring means that the ball is rolling, and you helped start that by riding a bike, walking, sending an email to council, or voicing your opinion that you want improved livability in this town. RSVP via Facebook here.
I’ve been to a fair number of council meetings, and let me tell you. In general, people don’t go. So when they do show up in significant numbers (10+), council notices and realizes the topic at hand is very important to citizens. That’s right, it’s that easy. Show up, preferably on a bicycle or on foot, and council members can see that you care about this discussion. City Council has heard the citizens asking for improvements and expansion of Denton’s bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure, our push for Complete Streets. We all deserve the same thing: fair accommodation in planning and roadway design with all users in mind – including bicyclists, public transportation vehicles and riders, and pedestrians of all ages and abilities. A safer, more welcoming, livable environment.
The timing for this discussion is key, as we’re a year from having a commuter train arrive downtown, and we have 40,000 students at two state universities here in town. Right now, there’s no easy way for people to get between the universities and downtown, even by car. We are overdue in planning to accommodate pedestrians and cyclists in this transit corridor, and the city council knows it. Council has seen the ever increasing support for Complete Streets, and we need look no further than Fort Worth or Dallas to see that other regional cities are leading by example. This meeting has no publicly viewable agenda, but my gut feeling is that council might discuss some of the following topics:
- creating an actual Bicycle Master Plan
- creating a bicycle/pedestrian citizen advisory committee
- hiring consultants to perform feasibility studies on bike/ped connectivity
- revising the Mobility Plan
- questioning city staff why we haven’t improved bike/ped transit as promised in the official Denton Plan