Kansas City passes new development code with major bicycle parking & bike/ped improvements

Bicycle and pedestrian organization and advocates, including the Missouri Bicycle & Pedestrian Federation, have been working for a number of years to ensure that reasonable bicycle and pedestrian accommodation is included in Kansas City, Missouri's comprehensive new Development Code.

City staff and several city council members played a key role in making sure the bicycle and pedestrian provisions were retained through the long and complex process of hearings and revisions.

Yesterday the new development code was officially adopted by the KCMO city council.


Thoroughgoing integration of bicycle and pedestrian consideration throughout the code and development process

* Officially adopts "promoting pedestrian, bicycle and transit use" as one of the purposes of the code

* Traffic impact studies now look at far more than motor vehicle traffic, but must consider the impact of developments on traffic conditions, transit users, pedestrians, bicyclists, and neighborhood livability.

* For subdivisions, requiring creation of a "integrated system of lots, streets, trails, and infrastructure that provides for efficient movement of pedestrians, bicycles and automobiles," create a system of interconnected streets to avoid over-reliance on a few major roads, and creating pedestrian connections to nearby destinations.

* Extensive new bicycle parking requirements for new buildings and developments
 - Short-term bicycle parking for customers or short-term visitors
 - Long-term bicycle parking for employees and residents

* Reduced motor vehicle parking requirements if businesses include bicycle accommodations like showers

* Encouragement for businesses to incorporate travel demand management--to encourage carpooling, bicycling, walking, transit use and other ways of reducing car traffic
* Encouragement for developers to dedicate right-of-way for trails
* Incorporation of streamway standards that encourage development of trails along streamways

Model code--will other Missouri cities follow?
In particular, the bicycle parking requirements are a real model that other cities across the entire U.S. can follow.

Lack of safe, secure bicycle parking is invariably listed as one of the top impediments to more bicycling.

Creating safe bicycle parking is very, very inexpensive when done as part of new development--because bicycle parking locations are so much more simple and inexpensive than the equivalent automobile parking requirements.

For instance, long-term bicycle parking in an apartment complex can be provided in a parking garage, shed, or in the living unit itself.
Support of citizens like you key to success
As Eric Rogers of Let's Go KC (one of the main groups behind the effort to include the bicycle & pedestrian provisions) said, "It was a big fight to get these things in there, so this is one time where your letters, emails, and phone calls made a big difference."