The Miami Bicycle Master Plan, crafted after a lot of research by Mike Lydon of The Streets Plans Collaborative (and whom we saw sporting a cool bicycling shirt back in August), went before the City Commission and was unanimously approved.
Let me let that sink in.
The City of Miami now has an unanimously-approved 231-page document that presents a thoroughly researched and comprehensive plan to turn Miami into a bicycling-friendly city by the year 2030. Milestones start as early as 2010, the next three being 2015, 2020 and 2030, so already by the end of next year we should start to see some improvements enabled and in place. The plan is broken down by areas and tackles bikeways (of a variety of kinds, from bike lanes to sharrows and bike boulevards), bicycle parking and (extremely important) bicycle education for the general public. The plan is written in very accessible language and it has a quantity of visual elements to drive various points home. Frankly, I’m tempted to have it printed and bound at Kinko’s to have a copy to peruse at leisure.
Download the 2030 Bicycle Master Plan here.
Why is it important that Miami now has this Bicycle Master Plan? In one word: regulation. The plan makes sure that from now on no one can say, “Well, we didn’t know what to do on that road/park/area/etc so we did nothing.” It makes sure that there are easy-to-achieve goals broken down by geographic areas and neighborhoods, and that said goals are broken down into reachable steps. It makes sure that, whoever is in office, the City continues along the development path of its bicycling infrastructure without (much) interruption. Most of all, it tells the world and, (of extreme importance) the county and surrounding cities, that the commitment to bicycling is here to stay and is important and essential enough that a guide was put together to make sure it is done right.
As a resident of one of those surrounding cities, I am happy for Miami, and hope that my city, Miami Beach, will use the momentum generated by the City of Miami right across the bay and use it to get their own act together and moving forward. Frankly, I want them all — Miami Beach, Coral Gables, Hialeah, Key Biscayne, South Miami, Doral, North Miami Beach, etc — to adopt similar measures, to look at the Miami Bicycle Master Plan as the launching point for their own plan as well.
Congratulations and heartfelt thanks to the City of Miami and to every person that worked, directly or indirectly, to put together this Bicycle Master Plan.