Saturday, February 18, 2012

"Some By Bicycle, When They Can ...."

The city of Cedar Rapids--and the nearby cities of Robins, Hiawatha and Marion--is planning for a 4-lane Tower Terrace Road to link Highway 13 and Interstate 380.

I have mixed feelings--as a lover of nature, I'm not that sanguine about our urban area taking over more fields and trees. But on the other hand, if the growth is going to occur, there will increasingly be a need for an alternate east-west road so that Collins and Boyson and Blair's Ferry don't continue to grow more congested. Tower Terrace as a "big" road makes more sense to me than Boyson. (Planners, figure out pedestrian and bike routes over this big road as part of the planning stage--otherwise, like Collins and Blair's Ferry, the road becomes a giant river of autos that is more daunting to ford to a biker than an actual river would be.)

Anyway, regardless of the merits of the plan, one line in the Gazette story caught my eye. It noted that 40,000 residents will soon call the area home, and that most of them will commute by autos or "some by bicycle when they can."

Trust me, they can most days, year round. I know it's been a pretty mild winter, so this season isn't a good test--I lost of most of January 2011 due to persistent snow cover, for instance--but I've been commuting by bicycle most days this winter. And by the end of February, even in years with harsher winters, the bike commuting season is usually underway.

Nice to see the Gazette mention the possibility that some of the new residents in these north regions of the metroplex might ride bikes. Cedar Rapids has a policy of trying to be a bike-friendly community, and figuring out how to incorporate bike routes in a way that won't be too expensive nor interfere with car traffic would be nice.

1 comment:

  1. I'm curious to see how they'll do that, considering there'll be a lot of residential areas they'll have to contend with. Right now people have to take Tower Terrace down to Boyson or up to Robin's Main Street to get to Marion, and even then they have to zigzag to 29th Avenue to get to Highway 13. I'll be impressed if they get Tower Terrace built all the way through.