Bike Funding Vote at Jersey City City Council Tonight

Posted on 09/10/2013

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Will the City Council vote to support safer streets fr Jersey City cyclists?

Will the City Council vote to support safer streets fr Jersey City cyclists?

I admit I don’t know a lot about this, but I plan to attend tonight’s Jersey City City Council meeting – Wednesday September 11th at 6pm – where there will be a vote on funding for bicycle infrastructure improvements. The meeting takes place in council chambers at Jersey City City Hall – 280 Grove Street. The meeting agenda is here though I couldn’t find the specific item. There’s another bike item – page 15, resolution Z8. 13.643 about a bike grant. Perhaps I am just not familiar enough with these city documents to spot the item.

There’s a bit of information about the scheduled bike bond vote at this NJ.com article entitled Jersey City Council to vote on bond that provides for bicycling infrastructure improvements. According to NJ.com the vote is on a:

capital improvement bond ordinance that includes (among several other street and traffic improvements) ‘the implementation of a bicycle infrastructure plan comprised of the installation of striped bike lanes and sharrows throughout the City, including markings and signage installation and acquisition of various equipment, including but not limited to, bicycle racks and related equipment.’

It may not be as bikey as I’d love to see. According to an email from BikeJC’s Dan Levin clarifies that the vote is for an item that “involves re-apportioning about $1m in capital bonds not spent.” I am a bit skeptical, as basic bike stuff (bike lanes, sharrow-ed bike routes) is cheap. It’s basically the cost of paint – or fancy long-lasting paint called thermoplastic – plus, of course, staff or contractor time. Where highways run into the billions of dollars per mile. these sorts of on-street bike facilities run in the thousands per mile. I’d guestimate that less than a half-million dollars is probably enough for the entire ~50 miles of the Jersey City bike plan… so I am concerned that a chunk of the funding could be going to non-bike stuff. We’ll see.

If you have time, come on down to the meeting at Jersey City’s City Hall tonight – 6pm Wednesday September 11th 2013.