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Montgomery County often points to its efforts to build trails, like the CCT, to show it is serious about bicycling infrastructure. And these major trails are important.

But the Montgomery County DOT has consistently failed to pay attention to the many smaller street projects that can make a big difference. I was on the citizens advisory committee for the North Silver Spring Master Plan in 1999-2000, and was pleased to see many local streets be designated as important cycling routes. That Master Plan, together with the Silver Spring CBD Master Plan approved in the same period, defined a good network of roads in Silver Spring that should receive bike lanes or other features to make them more bike friendly going forward.

But those recommendations have been almost completely ignored by MCDOT. I've seen streets like Cameron Street and Spring Street be repaved and/or restripped since the Master Plans were approved, and they have consideration for bicycling facilities of any kind be included in the work, even though it would have been very easy to do so at very little cost in the normal course of the work.

MCDOT can do good work on bicycle infrastructure if it is a high priority project. But the car culture still prevails there, and cyclist and peds are often overlooked for more ordinary, lower profile projects.

by Wayne Phyillaier on Dec 14, 2012 2:44 pm • linkreport

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