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New Parking Option Provides Benefit for Cyclists

As more residents of Fairfax County experience the benefits of bicycling, the need for bicycle parking is steadily increasing.

As one of my Chamber responsibilities, I serve on the board of the Transportation Association of Greater Springfield, or TAGS as it is more well-known. 

TAGS is a non-profit organization dedicated to achieving a significantly improved transportation system and business environment through the private and public sector in the Greater Springfield area. With meetings every other month, the board comes together to raise awareness and address transportation concerns and issues.

Fairfax County Department of Transportation’s (FCDOT) bicycle program was on the agenda at our December board meeting. As more residents of Fairfax County experience the benefits of bicycling, the need for bicycle parking is steadily increasing. In order to address this growing demand, FCDOT’s bicycle program initiated a plan to enhance and expand bicycle parking countywide. Begun in 2010, new bike racks and bike lockers are being installed at more than 25 locations including park and ride lots, transit facilities and other public buildings. In addition, the county has partnered with both the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA) and the Virginia Railway Express (VRE) to address the growing demand at Metrorail and VRE Stations.

The Greater Springfield area is benefiting, too. Bicycle racks were installed as part of the recently completed Old Keene Mill Road Park and Ride Lot (the former Circuit City site) and plans are underway to improve bike parking at the Franconia-Springfield Metro Station. FCDOT and VRE have applied for federal grant funds to improve bicycle parking on the south side of the Station at the end of Barry Road.  In addition, WMATA will be adding new bike parking in one of the structured parking garages. Branded as “Bike and Ride,” an interior area of the garage will be converted to bicycle parking. This facility will provide secure, safe and convenient parking for approximately 80-100 bicycles. The project is funded by WMATA and should be completed by the end of 2012.

In addition to designing and installing bicycle parking, the FCDOT bicycle staff will be issuing new guidelines, standards and specifications providing additional guidance to both the development community as well as government agencies responsible for the design, installation and maintenance of bicycle racks and bicycle parking facilities. Technical assistance is also available to schools, shopping centers and commercial property owners on the proper installation/location of bicycle racks. 

More and more businesses are realizing the benefits of providing bicycle parking for their customers and employees. If your business is interested in installing or improving bicycle parking and would like additional information or assistance, please contact the County’s Bicycle Program Coordinator, 703-877-5600.

If you would like more information about TAGS please give me a call, 703-866-3500.

This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.

Alan Young January 10, 2012 at 01:45 AM
Yes! Bicycling, like autos, needs infrastructure, albeit, much less. Bike racks allow bicyclists to park their bikes safely and securely, they encourage patronage of businesses, churches, and anywhere parking is required. You can park many bicycles in the space of one auto. Businesses especially need to lobby their landlords for permission to install bike racks.

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