Tuesday, June 16, 2009

New Bike/Ped Coordinator has started

Spokane now has a Bike/Pedestrian Coordinator. This is a position in the City that is responsible for... well, coordinating bike/ped interests and communication within and between city departments. It's hard appreciate exactly why this position is so critical if you've not spent time dealing with bike-related policy and implementation in the city. I have spent way more time than I ever wanted to in this arena and I can tell you, there are a lot of moving parts. When it comes to transportation-related anything, all systems, processes, thinking, and organization are optimized to move and park automobiles. Any other transportation alternative requires active advocacy and pushing during every single step of the process. I am not exaggerating or overstating this in the slightest.

Anyway, the BAB meeting was tonight and we got to meet Grant. He's the new bike/ped coordinator and he's really got his job cut out for him. He has a background in planning and design, mostly in Golf Course design. He did that for 20 years, where he owned a company in Kansas. At some point, he got interested in urban planning, went back to school and got a master's degree in Planning. His undergrad degree was in Landscape Design. One passion he says is designing outdoor spaces. He's most recent job was as a city planner in Redmond, Oregon.

Most of the BAB meeting tonight was the BAB talking at Grant: giving him background of the members and a brief history of the last 3 years or so. In part, our goal was to figure out how to transition a lot of the work we've been doing to Grant in a way that maintains the momentum as he comes up to speed.

His manager, Katherine Miller, was there to introduce Grant and provide the basic goals and work items that Grant will be working toward for the bike part of his job over the next couple years:

1. Review and revise plan network

2. Create project list

3. Establish wayfinding protocols -- how do we sign routes?

4. Develop fiscal note: figure out per-item/facility/maintenance costs

5. Establish on-street design protocols

6. Review and amend existing design manuals

7. Create a funding strategy

8. Establish performance indicators

9. Assess opportunities: basically, be on the look out for potential projects that pop up, but may not be on the master bike plan

10. Forge internal partnerships

As MMW once said, "we are rolling..."


FBC Spokane said...

When does the doing begin?

Anonymous said...

Hmmmm.... these don't seem like the right pictures for this post.... are they?

John Speare said...

Jeff: Doing is ongoing. Check out this month's OTM bike column for the upcoming projects. With some luck and graft, hopefully we'll see a big pot o cash in the Federal DOT 2010 allocation (see: smartroutes.org for more)

Questess: I recently blew away my laptop and the only pics I had locally were from a trip to Seattle a couple weeks ago. Good filler.

vanillajane said...

Hey Jeff! Welcome aboard!

I started writing my bike to work about a year ago, here in Olympia, then started a biking group at Labor and Industries, this year. I was amazed at how quickly and how popular our group has grown in such a short time! Great planning and design comes from stakeholder building, advocacy, public education and support. Keep me in the loop! Staci at SRTC has my info; let's stay in touch.