Why support BikeKC--A Plan to Make Kansas City More Bicycle-Friendly

The plan has been years in development, but is now stuck in committee at the city council. Your support could make the difference in making bicycling a safer and more convenient transportation and recreation option in Kansas City.

What is BikeKC?

BikeKC is a proposal to create a network of on-street bike lanes and routes and reserve a little more right-of-way in future developments for pedestrian and biking facilities. Details about the plan can be found at www.bikekc.org.

Bicycle riders, groups, clubs, and shops around the area strongly support BikeKC and have worked hard to get it passed. BikeKC has real grass-roots support.

BikeKC has been tabled since September 2001. Apparently some developers oppose the plan because they will have to reserve a little more of their real estate in new developments for wider roadways that will include space for bicycle and pedestrian facilities.

Others have opposed on-street bicycling facilities on safety grounds. Fortunately, there is ample data to show that bicycling is very safe, and in fact on-street bicycling is 2-3 times safer than bicycling on off-street bicycle paths. Furthermore, on-street bicycle facilities are the only way to make bicycling a realistic transportation alternative. Off-street bike paths are a great recreation alternative and BikeKC's on-street facilities will be a nice complement to the many planned bicycle paths in the MetroGreen plan.

Thanks to a grass-roots effort and at the request of Mayor Barnes and Councilman Charles Eddy, on July 31st BikeKC will again come for consideration before the Kansas City Planning and Zoning Commission.

Why should Kansas Citians support BikeKC?

* Bicycling is a fun, fast, safe, healthy, and inexpensive form of transportation and recreation. We should promote its use in the metro area.

* The availability of transportation alternatives will make Kansas City a more thriving, modern, liveable city.

* New developments will be planned from the beginning to allow for bicycle and pedestrian access. This sort of planning costs a little in the short run but makes development more attractive and ultimately, more valuable to those who live there. People like to live where they can bike and walk.

* Studies show that on-street bike paths and routes such as those proposed in BikeKC increase bicycle safety, reduce friction between bicycles and autos, and are effective in increasing bicycle use.

* Bicycling, even just a few miles a week to work, school, the store or the park, is a healthy and eco-friendly alternative. Example: People who switched from auto to bicycle commuting lowered their overall mortality rate by 40% (that's a lot!). BikeKC will make utility bicycling (commuting, shopping, etc.), more practical for more people.

*Millions of federal dollars are available to smooth streets, replace grates, and repair curbs and gutters on bike routes. Let's get BikeKC in place use our fair share of those dollars before they're gone.


What Can I Do to Support Bike KC?

I urge Kansas City road users to let the Kansas City Council members know that you support BikeKC. Grass-roots effort has been important in getting BikeKC as far as it has, and more is needed to push it over the top.

Please be polite and persuasive when you write the City Council, 24th Floor, 414 E. 12th St., KCMO 64106, call (816) 513-1625, or email.

Please consider attending the meeting of the Planning, Zoning, and Economic Development Committee when BikeKC will be considered. The meeting is July 31st, 2002, at 1:30PM, in the Council Chambers, 26th Floor of City Hall, 414 East 12th Street.

Council members on the Planning, Zoning, and Economic Development Committee (who most need to hear from you on this issue) are Ed Ford, Troy Nash, Bonnie Sue Cooper, and Mary Williams-Neal.


City Council Email Addresses

[note that aides receive email for some council members?thus the email name is not always the same as the council member name]

Mayor: Kay Barnes
mayor [at] kcmo.org

1st District (at large): Ed Ford
Email: chad_bartlett [at] kcmo.org

1st District: Teresa Loar
Email: lisa_minardi[at] kcmo.org

2nd District (at large): Bonnie Sue Cooper
E-mail: linda_becker[at] kcmo.org

2nd District: Paul Danaher
E-mail: paul_danaher[at] kcmo.org

3rd District (at large): Troy Nash
E-mail: troy_nash[at] kcmo.org

3rd District: Mary Williams-Neal
Email: mary_williams-neal[at] kcmo.org

4th District (at large): Evert Asjes III
Email: julie_llorente[at] kcmo.org

4th District: Jim Rowland
Email: dana_laiben[at] kcmo.org

5th District (at large): Becky Nace
Email: tom_wyrsch[at] kcmo.org

5th District: Terry Riley
(No Email, Phone: (816) 513-1625)

6th District (at large): Alvin Brooks
(No Email, Phone: (816) 513-1625)

6th District: Charles A. Eddy
Email: charles_eddy[at] kcmo.org

Relevant Web Links

More information about the City Council, including a map of the six districts:
www.kcmo.org/council.nsf/council/home

More information about the Bike KC Plan:
www.bikekc.org/

Bike KC summary from the KC Public Works Department:
www.kcmo.org/pubworks.nsf/web/kcbike1

BikeKC article by KC Star columnist Mike Hendricks about Bike KC:
www.kansascity.com/mld/kansascity/news/local/3588452.htm

On-street Bicycle Safety Fact Sheet:
http://griffon.mwsc.edu/~bhugh/bikesafetyfactsheet.html

A letter responding to the safety concerns with on-street bicycle routes:
http://griffon.mwsc.edu/~bhugh/bikekcsafety.html

A letter explaining the advantages of the Bike KC proposal:
http://griffon.mwsc.edu/~bhugh/bikekcadvantages.html

Also in infoZine Is On-street Bicycling Safe?