The Miami Bicycle Master Plan is taking shape nicely, it appeared from Mike Lydon's presentation last night at Grapeland Heights Park. A crowd of 52, mostly cyclists, had many comments about how much needs to be done, both in physical facilities and in education of the riding and driving public. The plan, if carried out, will do a lot to meet those needs.
Mayor Manny Diaz, far left, showed up to take a bow for his bicycle initiative and thank the cyclists who have supported it. "We've come a long way," Diaz said, "because of the pressure you're putting on your elected officials to do the right thing."
One rider wondered where the money to carry out the plan will come from, in today's stressed economy. Lydon, near left, answered that Portland, Ore., considered by many to be America's most bike-friendly city, has spent $10 million a year recently to carry out its own bicycle plan. "It's not all that hard to put together $10 million from various sources," he said.
The Miami plans will get one more public airing, probably on Sept. 21, before going to the City Commission in October. Lydon, of the planning firm Street Plans Collaborative, stressed the importance of cyclists staying involved in Miami's plans and others throughout the county. "If the people in this room . . . keep the pressure on, you can get things done," Lydon said.
One good way to be involved is to join and support Green Mobility Network, which sparked the Miami process when it approached Mayor Diaz nearly two years ago and followed up with an armful of proposals for improving the city's streets and other bike-related facilities. Diaz and his team deserve warm thanks for what's been done, but the mayor's term winds down this fall. We'll need to be alert and involved going forward.