Getting More Out of Transit By Making It Easy to Walk or Bike to Stations

This still shop from an interactive map shows planned interventions that can help make DC's transit system more walkable and bikeable. Image: Washington Metropolitan Council of Governments
A map of proposed street upgrades to improve walking and biking to rail stations in the DC region. Click to enlarge. Image: Washington Metropolitan Council of Governments

The DC region is working on a plan to get the most out of its transit infrastructure by making it easier and safer to walk or bike to subways and commuter rail. The region’s Transportation Planning Board recently conducted a big audit to figure out which stations have additional capacity, and what barriers prevent people from walking and biking to these stations.

Network blog TheWashCycle shares this update from the TPB:

The study began by examining ridership at all 91 Metro stations and several MARC and VRE commuter rail stations throughout the region. Ultimately it identified 25 stations capable of accommodating additional riders that also have the greatest potential to see increased ridership demand in the next decade.

Having identified the 25 stations, the study then looked at potential infrastructure improvements that would make it easier to get to each of the stations on foot or by bicycle.

In all, the study identified more than 3,000 improvements, including new or improved sidewalks, crosswalks, shared-use paths, bike parking, bike lanes, and wayfinding signage. Most of the improvements had already been included in existing local plans and Metro station area plans, though some were identified by a field team organized by the TPB as part of the study.

You can check out the recommended improvements for each station using this interactive map. WashCycle reports that the list of projects will help determine which improvements get federal transportation funding.

Elsewhere on the Network today: Systemic Failure explains how an outdated California law is giving police more leeway to harass pedestrians. The Walking Bostonian says the Boston Globe missed the mark in a recent editorial about how to improve the city’s bus service. And Rebuilding Place in the Urban Space weighs in on the critical difference between a “traffic study” and a “transportation impact study.”

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