Your participation is needed to build a more bikeable South Snohomish County

Your participation is needed to build a bikeable South Snohomish County

As you may have read in your April and February Couriers, Cascade was awarded funding through the Verdant Health Commission to build on the great work underway in South Snohomish County to establish bicycling as a safe and attractive transportation and recreation option for families, commuters and tourists alike. With the Commission’s support, over the next two years, Cascade will work with city planners, elected leaders, businesses and the community to lay the foundation for each jurisdiction to make bicycling available to people of all ages and abilities throughout South Snohomish County.

We’ve officially kicked off our work in South Snohomish County, specifically in Edmonds, Mountlake Terrace, Lynnwood and Bothell. We’ve met with city staff to learn about the efforts in each jurisdiction to improve people’s ability to travel by bike, and we’ve been impressed with what we’ve learned.

In Edmonds, for example, the City is working to create a safe bicycle route connecting from the Interurban Trail into the heart of downtown Edmonds with key projects underway to realize this connection. Meanwhile, among other bicycle projects, the city of Mountlake Terrace (recent adopters of a Complete Streets ordinance) is working to complete the Lakeview Trail, connecting to the Mountlake Terrace Transit Center and future light rail station. And Lynnwood is working to complete two critical missing links in the Interurban Trail network.

While progress is taking place, there’s still work to be done to realize the potential bicycling has to offer in these communities. The first phase of our Verdant work is focused on building relationships with city staff, community organizations and the business community in addition to learning from the community about key barriers to bicycling and opportunities for improvement. So, if you live, work or play in South Snohomish County, we wanted to let you know about upcoming opportunities for you to get involved in helping to build a more bikeable community.

SOUTH SNOHOMISH BIKES SURVEY

First, in an effort to better understand the bicycling environment, we have launched an online survey to learn from you about barriers to bicycling, important bike routes and destinations, and the types of bicycle improvements that would encourage you to bicycle more.

If you have ten minutes, we’d love your insight.

BIKEABILITY TOURS & ADVOCACY LEADERSHIP INSTITUTE

In addition to the online survey, this summer we will be conducting community bikeability tours in Edmonds, Mountlake Terrace and Lynnwood, offering community bike rides to evaluate existing bicycle routes and identify future opportunities for bicycle improvements. The bikeability tours will be followed by a discussion focused on bicycle infrastructure and opportunities to help advance bicycling as community members. The bikeability tours will provide a foundation for Cascade’s two-day Advocacy Leadership Institute offered this summer to community members in South Snohomish County interested in building bicycle advocacy skills. Stay tuned for additional information about each of these events.

POLICY WORKSHOPS

We are also in the process of developing a workshop series focusing on bike-friendly transportation planning, policy and design for elected leaders, city staff, and community stakeholders, which will kick off this summer.

SUPPORTING EMPLOYERS

And last but definitely not least, we are continuing our work with employers throughout South Snohomish County to elevate the importance of bicycle commuting as key to a better business and bottom line. If you work in South Snohomish County and would like your business to increase its level of support for bicycling, please respond to the survey linked above and contact Stephanie Frans, Cascade’s Commute Programs Manager: stephanie.frans@cascadebicycleclub.org

As we move forward with each element of our Verdant work, we want to emphasize the importance of community involvement in helping to advance bicycling in the communities of South Snohomish County. We have a number of exciting opportunities coming up this summer and hope you can be involved! We will provide additional information about events like the bikeability tours and our two-day Advocacy Leadership Institute through upcoming email communications.