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Published September 23rd, 2015
Interested In Moraga's Bikeability? Take A Ride!
A runner crosses Rheem Boulevard to reach the sidewalk while a mother keeps her children as close as possible to the side of the road. Missing bike lanes and sidewalks force pedestrians, bikers and drivers to share the road. Photo A. Scheck

Dave Campbell is a pro when it comes to bikeability. The advocacy director and the Bike East Bay team have been working for 33 years to make Contra Costa and Alameda counties more bikeable. They have conducted studies in Piedmont, Pleasant Hill, Fremont and last month Berkeley. Now it is Moraga's turn, as part of the bike and pedestrian plan conducted by the town. Riders of all ages and abilities are invited to partake in a two-hour bike tour of the town with planning staff and Bike East Bay specialists Oct. 3 to explore what it would take to make Moraga totally bike safe and convenient.
"The goal of the Walk-Bike Plan is to make walking and biking in Moraga safer and easier," says Coleman Frick, the town assistant planner in charge of the matter. "As the next step in the development of the plan, the Town is asking residents for their thoughts and opinions on walking and biking in Moraga." Different outreach mechanisms have been devised: an online survey, an interactive map to pinpoint and note current concerns, a public workshop on Sept. 26, and for the first time, the bike-through exercise.
"We do this regularly when cities want to update their bike plan," says Campbell. "This is good on-the-ground feedback from residents." The group will assemble at the library the morning of Oct. 3, share a light breakfast, and from there follow a route to assess bikeability. "The ride is really for bicyclists of all abilities," assures Campbell, "parents with kids can come, as well as older riders. We will go to a specific place, for example a school, and there will discuss the challenges people have in that neighborhood." Solutions can be discussed on the spot, he says, with immediate feedback from users.
"If people cannot come to the ride but have places they would like us to explore, they should contact me," adds Frick. Even before the ride, residents can be part of the decision making by attending a public workshop on Tuesday, Sept. 29 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at the Hacienda de las Flores, La Sala building (2100 Donald Drive).
"We want to hear from members of the community about the needs and concerns of pedestrians and cyclists, the obstacles and challenges to walking and biking; and residents' ideas and suggestions for improving conditions," says Frick.
The needs assessment should be completed by mid-October. The Citizens Advisory Committee is meeting on Sept. 22, and on Oct.14 the Town Council will get an informational hearing on the progress made. "The draft plan, and associated CEQA documents, will be assembled this November and December and will be circulated for review and comment by the public and decision makers in January and February of next year," says Frick. The final version of the plan is expected to be presented to the Town Council for adoption and approval next April.
To reach Frick, email cfrick@moraga.ca.us. The online survey is available at www.surveymonkey.com/r/WalkBikeMoraga and the interactive "pinnable" map at http://j.mp/1NOEqpo.


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