Monday, August 10, 2009

Bike Omaha 20 Mile Loop - Inaugural Ceremony

It's official. The 20 mile bike route system in Omaha, known as Bike Omaha, was kicked off today in a ribbon cutting ceremony presided by Omaha Mayor, Jim Suttle. In front of about 40 people, the mayor spoke for a few moments about the origins of the Bike Omaha system and its importance to Omaha. Also speaking was Kerri Peterson of Live Well Omaha and member of the Mayor's Bicycle/Pedestrian Advisory Committee. City of Omaha Traffic Engineer, Todd Pfitzer, was on hand to answer questions about the route.

Both Mayor Suttle and Ms. Peterson cited reasons for establishing this bike route network in Omaha. Among many reasons, advocating bike transportation in Omaha will help to attract young people to the city, promote safety for bicyclists, reduce traffic congestion in Downtown and Midtown, and increase the general health of the city by promoting a healthy lifestyle.

The Bike Omaha system is funded privately through the Peter Kiewit Foundation and an anonymous donor. The system will feature five initial routes:
  • Benson, from Downtown to the Benson Business District
  • Aksarben, from Downtown to Aksarben Village and ultimately along Mercy Road to 78th Street
  • Happy Hollow, from the Benson Route at 48th and Miami to the Keystone Trail
  • Doorly, from Downtown to the Zoo
  • Midtown, from Creighton University to the Field Club Trail and Lauritzen Gardens
In addition, there will be connecting routes that will provide access to the regional trail network, serving many important destinations around the city.

Todd Pfitzer said that the Benson Route should be completed this November.

Also announced today was a partnership between Activate Omaha and the City of Omaha to provide bicycle parking racks along the Bike Omaha routes.




Unknown said...

Thanks for posting this, Scott.

Biker Bob/Runner Bob said...

Well done Scott.

I was bumbed I couldn't get away from work to attend.

dale said...

You must have been standing just in front of me. Nice write up. Thanks for taping the speeches.

Your audio was better than live. I couldn't hear anything except the Mayor saying he was fully committed to making Omaha a bikeable community and that the 20 miles will be completed in 12-18 months. The signs look for attractive and informative with both mileage and estimated times. Looks like they are assuming about 6mph which is just about write for casual riders in normal clothing on normal bikes.

AOJules said...

Great job as usual, Scott. Thanks for being there and for posting!

Scott Redd said...

It was nice meeting you, Sean.

I thought I might see you there Bob. Another time, I'm sure.

Dale: Interesting observation on the riding time estimate on the ride. I didn't even pay attention to that.

My pleasure, Julie. It was cool to see so many people out, including your kids, on their bikes, riding the lanes. I can't wait to see the Benson Route unfold.

Shim said...

So Suttle ruins another Omaha event, what a tool!

GetActive said...

This was actually a great event and we were lucky to have the Mayor and the City's support!!

Shim said...

He will go down as the worst Omaha Mayor of all time, mark my words.
(If he isn't already).

Biker Bob/Runner Bob said...

He is on twitter. If you have seggestions for him, drop in and let him know what you would do differently.