Installing a Pop-Up Bikeway

Posted by Dan Favre on July 31, 2017 in Advocacy, Bicycle Safety

Update on the St. Bernard Avenue demonstration project

What an incredible weekend! The Complete Streets Ambassadors, Bike Easy, City of New Orleans, and many volunteers installed a temporary protected bike way on St. Bernard Avenue. Many thanks to everyone who participated in the planning, outreach, and installation!

And huge thanks to all the people and businesses on St. Bernard Avenue this weekend! People were generally really welcoming, and we had a lot of great conversations. Personally, I got invited in to The Other Place Bar at the end of the day and had a great time chatting with people, even though many were skeptical. Over a number of cold drinks, we were able to get past initial reactions and really dig into details of how best to accommodate everyone on the street safely, no matter how they travel. We’re looking forward to getting lots more feedback! Please fill out the survey here.

Want to get involved with future pop-ups and be a voice for transportation safety and equity in your neighborhood? Apply to become a Complete Streets Ambassador today!

Check out photos on Facebook, and there are more photos below!

There’s been lots of support from Circle Foods, Ray’s on the Avenue, The First and Last Stop Bar, Sidney’s Saloon, local residents, and many others. Come meet the project organizers and local supporters, give your feedback on the demonstration, and enjoy some food and drink on Tuesday, August 1st from 4pm to 6pm at the Community Kickoff Event!

The 2-week demonstration is a whole new way of showcasing the potential of streets built to share and getting community input into street design. We’re also excited to build momentum for an improved Complete Streets policy that will lead to improved health equity, better public accountability on roadway design, and a low-stress network of really well designed streets that have protected bike lanes, crosswalks and pedestrian signals, and traffic calming measures such as curb “bumpouts” and trees.

The idea behind the temporary design comes from what’s called a “parking protected bike lane”, which is a design currently used in many other cities, supported by the Federal Highway Administration (among many others), and pioneered by the National Association of City Transportation Officials. The specifics on St. Bernard are a collaborative design by the Complete Streets Ambassadors, City of New Orleans, and Bike Easy. It’s not perfect, but I find it to be a huge improvement on my ride. Let us know what you think!

St. Bernard Avenue was chosen as the location for this event through consultation with the Complete Streets Ambassadors, Bike Easy staff and volunteers, and City of New Orleans officials and engineers. Our door-to-door community outreach in the area and discussions with business owners on the Avenue also showed strong community support for the project. Of course, not everyone will love this… and we want to hear from critics too!

St. Bernard Avenue is a crucial connection for residents of the 7th Ward and Gentilly to job centers downtown. Health outcomes in much of the 7th Ward need to be improved, and making walking and biking easy options can help reduce health disparities. Bike Easy would love to see a safe, comfortable bicycle connection the full-length of St. Bernard Avenue!

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