Olathe, KS is getting ready to widen 127th Street, which has a new overpass over I-35. The overpass is a great way to cross the highway without traversing an intersection, but safe bike routes to/from the overpass are still needed. There is some federal money available to fund bike lanes on the widened road, but pressure from cyclists is needed to ensure that the facilities actually get built.
Thursday, November 7, 7:00-9:00 p.m.
Indian Creek Library, 12990 Black Bob Road, Olathe, KS
From: Dale Crawford, JCBC Advocacy Chair
Now that the new 127th Street Overpass is open, we need safe bicycling roads to get to it. Here’s your opportunity to make it happen.
The City of Olathe is holding an informational meeting regarding reconstruction of 2 miles of 127th Street east of the new overpass. Initial plans include bike lane being provided because a Transportation Enhancement award, but we have seen how quickly bike lanes can get cut in the name of “value engineering” (cost cutting) as projects get closer to construction and during the critical land acquisition phases. SEE CITY OF OLATHE PRESS RELEASE BELOW!
Yes, these bike lanes are recommended in the DRAFT Bicycle Transportation Plan, but that plan is not adopted. Its just paper until its adopted. SO….
JCBC needs as many cyclists as possible to attend this informational meeting to express the need and demonstrate support for the bike lanes on 127th Street from Mur-Len (east end of the new overpass) east to Pflumm Road (Olathe-OP city limits). A strong show of support for bike lanes, bicyclists right to the road and the safe design of all roadway users will increase the protect the bike lanes through the lengthy design process and many difficult decisions this project with encounter. If adjacent residents along this stretch of road are like those at other public meetings, they may want the bike lanes removed so the road can be narrowed regardless of its impact on our safety.
If you can’t make it, email firstname.lastname@example.org, project manager or use the project web site form, http://www.improve127th.com/feedback_form.html, stating you want bike lanes on 127th Street so you can safely get to the overpass to cross I-35. Please copy me at email@example.com so I can have a record of the comments received.
Here are a few tips to include, but I strongly encourage you to personalize as it may pertain to you and how you are or will be able to use 127th Street.
- 127th Street will is a great way for bicyclists to cross I-35 without the traffic associated with a full interchange. But bicyclists must be able to safely get to the overpass to use it. Bike lanes will provide the safety.
- 127th Street fills a 4-mile gap between College Boulevard and Dennis Avenue to travel east-west through Olathe for bicyclists and reduces some trips for bicyclists as much as 4 miles to safely cross I-35. Consequently with the new overpass, this corridor will see many more bicyclists after the road is improved. Bike lanes will provide the adequate safety needed to accommodate these bicyclists along with the increased traffic.
- Bike lanes will provide a safer way to junior high and high school students to go to school at Pioneer Trail Junior and Olathe East High Schools and to Frontier Pool, all of which are along 127th Street. Providing safe routes for children to get to school and to area parks besides in a car decrease traffic and improves the health of our youth.
- Federal funds have been awarded specifically for the bike lanes reducing the city’s cost to build them.
I hope to see many of you at the meeting on March, 8, 7-9 PM, Indian Creek Library. But if you can’t make, please do email. Ever message helps JCBC’s efforts to improve the safety of bicycling in and around Johnson County.
JCBC Advocacy Chair