Thinking Big About Napoleon Ave & Beyond

Posted by Dan Favre on July 8, 2015 in Advocacy

Contact Your Local Officials to Support Bicycle Infrastructure on Napoleon Avenue

UPDATE: Since publishing this blog post, Bike Easy has been working closely with Napoleon area residents and neighborhood associations to devise a plan that contains high-quality dedicated bike lanes and a full-size neutral ground. A win-win is possible! We stand side-by-side with residents who desire to maintain the green space and Mardi Gras festivities of Napoleon Avenue, and we are proud that they also support healthy transportation and dedicated bike lanes. To learn more about our collaboration, please read this article in The Advocate.

Uptown roads are a mess right now. I get it, it’s frustrating. It’s tough for everyone to get around, even those of us on bikes. With this great disruption for better drainage, however, comes great opportunity, and here at Bike Easy we’re envisioning Napoleon Avenue as part of a large, bicycle-connected corridor stretching from Uptown to Gentilly.

In light of recent media articles highlighting concerns about bike lanes on Napoleon, it’s incredibly important to contact Mayor Landrieu (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) and Councilmember LaToya Cantrell (.(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)) to support a high-quality bike facility on the stretch of Napoleon being redone from S. Claiborne to Constance St. Both the Mayor and CM Cantrell, whose district Napoleon Ave is in, have been strong proponents of better bicycling facilities in New Orleans (don’t forget to say thanks!), and we want them to continue feeling support for that around decisions on Napoleon Ave. See below for more info on contacting your elected officials.

Imagine this with me for a moment – a student living in Uptown can easily bike along safe and convenient bikeways to a family BBQ in Gentilly or a class at UNO, a server living in Gentilly can easily ride to work at a restaurant in Uptown, a mom in Broadmoor can bike with her son to school in the Milan neighborhood . . .

A bicycle-connected corridor from Uptown to Gentilly is easy to envision – along the existing Gentilly Blvd bike lane to the 7th Ward and on to Mid-City and Broadmoor along a Broad St bike lane that will one day be extended over the I-10 bridge and eventually meet up with Napoleon, which will take people riding bikes all the way to the River. A high-quality bicycle facility on Napoleon from S. Claiborne down towards the river will be key to creating connectivity that truly supports active transportation and all the health benefits, economic opportunities, traffic/parking decongestion, and environmental gains that come with it.

Of course, proper design of roadways and bicycle facilities is important for success, and we need a transparent public process to arrive at the best design that incorporates bikeways and meets other neighborhood needs. Bike Easy certainly supports green space and water management features in our city, and we believe there’s a solution that can be a win/win for people on bikes and people who enjoy the neutral ground. Currently, however, we’ve found very little detailed information about the roadway design publicly available. We look forward to learning more and working with the City, US Army Corps of Engineers, and other stakeholders to find the best solution for Napoleon Ave.

Please contact Councilmember LaToya Cantrell and Mayor Mitch Landrieu to show support for healthy transportation and bicycle infrastructure in New Orleans. It’s as easy as sending an email to .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) and .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) (and please cc the US Army Corps of Engineers, who is in charge of the drainage project on Napoleon, at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)). It’s best if you use your own words and stories to describe why you support safe bicycling on Napoleon Ave, and these are some useful points to get you started:

  • Thanks for all you’ve done to support safe, healthy transportation in the City of New Orleans. I support efforts to create a comprehensive, connected bicycle infrastructure network in order to secure health, economic, traffic, and environmental benefits associated with active and equitable transportation.
  • Please continue to develop a bicycle-connected corridor from Gentilly to Uptown, including a high-quality bike facility on Napoleon Ave from Claiborne to the River.
  • Please ensure there is a transparent, public process to determine the best roadway design for Napoleon Ave.

Thanks for all you do to make bicycling in Greater New Orleans fun, safe, and easy for everyone!

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