Connecting Communities with Trails & Greenways in Charlottesville

(Most) People want trails and bike lanes. Here’s a way to help build that conversation.

via email:

“Please join the Piedmont Environmental Council and the Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission for a community conversation about ways for Charlottesville and Albemarle to develop a bicycle and pedestrian greenway system in the urban core that links together places where people live, work, shop, and play.

Speakers Chuck Flink, one of the nation’s leading designers of greenway systems, and Max Hepp-Buchanan, director of Bike Walk RVA, will discuss the community benefits of greenways and provide concrete examples of successful approaches.

This free event will take place on Wednesday, November 8 from 6 PM – 8 PM at the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center and is made possible by a grant from the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation.

For more information, contact Peter Krebs at

Space is limited, so please sign-up for free through our web page.”

Here’s hoping that conversation is not localized solely to the City of Charlottesville, but incorporates the growth areas such as Crozet, 29 North, and Pantops as well.

Think of this in context of the future, with Autonomous Vehicles playing a major role. (bolding mine)

“A transportation technology available now has outperformed AVs by almost every measure. It travels 50 to 80 times further per calorie expended than the automobile, requires very little space, works on existing infrastructure with minimal modification, doesn’t pollute, and makes its users healthier, happier, and skinnier.

That technology is called a bicycle. And while the bicycle is not new, great new bike infrastructure is. Protected bike lanes have been shown to be much more effective than conventional bike lanes. When a protected lane was inserted in Brooklyn’s Prospect Park West, the number of cyclists tripled, automobile speeding went from 75 percent to 17 percent of all drivers, injury crashes to all users dropped 63 percent. And there was no negative impact on the road capacity, even though a lane was lost.

Protected bike lanes are what you need to give a sense of security to civilian bicyclists. And with a lot of good bike lanes, you get Copenhagen, where four times as many people bike than drive.

Autonomous vehicles are the right answer to the wrong question. Why do MIT’s Media Lab, and Google keep asking how we can make cars better? Where has that question ever gotten us? A better question is how can we provide the most useful mobility to the most people with the most positive outcomes for society? The answer includes cars, but also trains, buses, bikes, and walking—especially biking and walking.”

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1 Comment

  1. Peter Krebs October 23, 2017 at 10:13

    Yes! The project absolutely includes the contiguous urban areas of Alebmarle and acknowledges nearby destinations in the Rural Area (e.g. Monticello, Crozet and Rivanna Village). Having said that, it is important to remember that this project is about the urban core of Charlottesville and Albemarle. It will be a sort of zoom-in within TJPDC’s five-county bike/ped plan.

    This is one community and our planning practices should reflect that. It is the explicit purpose of this grant that we model processes that approach the community holistically–that means bringing in new voices and talking realistically about how people live and the simple fact is that our lives don’t stop at the city or county line. Our process, the resulting plan and the civil society we hope to foster will reflect all of that.

    See you at the kickoff!

    Peter Krebs


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