COLLEGE PARK, Md. -- Three college students were killed and several others injured this year while attempting to cross a dangerous section of U.S. Route 1 near the University of Maryland-College Park.
The pedestrian fatalities spurred calls for change from students, lawmakers and families of the victims.
On Thursday, the Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) officially completed a number of safety improvements with the launching of a pedestrian signal at Hartwick Road. The new light stops traffic in all directions when a pedestrian crosses the busy highway.
"SHA fast-tracked these projects because we wanted to ensure we can deliver them in the fall semester," said State Highway Administrator Melinda Peters.
In addition to the new signal, the speed limit has been lowered to 25 mph, speed cameras became active 24/7 and a median fence was erected to encourage pedestrians to use the crosswalks.
[B' Spokes: This is much better than my last report on this area. Are they finally starting to get that you address all users of a road?
Let's force pedestrians to cross where they are getting killed for safety - Route 1 in College Park
<a href="http://www.baltimorespokes.org/article.php?story=2014071720391011">http://www.baltimorespokes.org/article.php?story=2014071720391011</a> ]
Jon Korin would solve city problems with bicycles.
Less traffic, parking challenges and Chesapeake Bay pollution if more people pedaled.
"If none of those benefits work for you, then do it because it drives the economy," said the Severna Park bicyclist. "Cycling tourism is huge."
Bicycling will be celebrated Wednesday when city officials proclaim it "East Coast Greenway Day" in Annapolis.
"Once you get over the Naval Academy Bridge, then you've got to ride with cars along Route 450, turn left on King George Street and over the Spa Creek bridge," he said. "My dream is to see designated bike lanes that give cyclists a safer place to ride."
City spokeswoman Rhonda Wardlaw said officials recognize the gap, but downtown streets aren't wide enough to accommodate parking and bike lanes. There's no plan at this time, she said, to enhance the route downtown.
"The city currently has numerous terrific, but disconnected trails," she said. "(We) would like to see our various departments work with (BikeAAA) to see how we could participate in the greenway project."
She said the proclamation of "East Coast Greenway Day" will promote safe bicycling and healthy living.
Read more: <a href="http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/baltimore-county/catonsville/ph-ca-edmondson-0910-20140821,0,3863833.story">http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/maryland/baltimore-county/catonsville/ph-ca-edmondson-0910-20140821,0,3863833.story</a>
In Pictures: My photos
Nate Evens (Bike Maryland), Kevin Kamenetz (County Executive), David Marks (County Council)
Kevin Kamenetz and riders being photographed (being photographed)
Even more smiles from Kevin Kamenetz
Location: Bosley Avenue & W Susquehanna Avenue, Towson, Maryland 21286
Join Bike Maryland and Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz who will officially open the Towson Bike Loop with a celebratory ribbon cutting followed by a bike ride.
Thank you to Councilman David Marks and the local advocates who helped bring this project to life!
The 3rd Annual Hero-Palooza features bike rides of 60, 25, and 12 miles that start at 8:00am, 8:30am, and 9:30am respectively at Oregon Ridge State Park in Hunt Valley. Afterward, join us for a family-fun festival and crab feast. We'll have a beer garden, games, and entertainment.
Net proceeds from Hero-Palooza benefit There Goes My Hero Foundation, an non-profit dedicated to helping leukemia patients and their families.
Registration before September 20 (please note registrations after September 10th are not guaranteed an event shirt.)
• $35 to ride or run/walk – additional $15 for the crabfeast
• Tickets for Crabfeast & Family Festival ONLY $35/person (Age 12 & Up).
Day of the event September 20
• $55 to ride or run/walk – additional $15 for the crabfeast
• Tickets for Crabfeast & Family Festival ONLY $55/person (Age 12 & Up)
Kids Under 12: Free for everything
*There will be no refunds after September 5, 2014.
Not a cyclist or runner? Join us for only The Family Festival featuring a Hero Crabfeast/ Cookout, Beer Garden (including wine), live music, children’s activities, raffles, prizes, and more!
For more information, <a href="http://www.theregoesmyhero.org">http://www.theregoesmyhero.org</a> or contact Terry Weigel, Executive Director, firstname.lastname@example.org 410-946-1700.
By Kevin Rector, The Baltimore Sun
Visitors, employees and neighbors of BWI Thurgood Marshall Airport now have a new option for enjoying the 12.5-mile trail that loops around the airport's Anne Arundel County property.
The Boston-based bikeshare company Zagster, working with BWI, has installed a dock for 10 of its bicycles outside the airport's international terminal, near the light rail station. They are available for rental for $5 a day. Long-term passes for regular use cost $15 a month or $50 a year.
Many US cities have adopted complete street ordinances and individual streets have been retrofitted. Locally, Baltimore County has been recognized as a national leader for Complete Streets, ranking 6th among 83 communities in the US with Complete Streets programs.
Despite this recognition, the county's on-road bike network is minimal; members of the Baltimore County Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Committee have been frustrated by the lack of commitment to projects; the county has missed the mark on its pedestrian safety campaign; and now its county executive struggles to find a $50 million contribution for the $2.4 billion Red Line his administration says it supports.
In Baltimore City, Council Bill 09-0433 was adopted in 2010 directing the Departments of Transportation and Planning to apply "Complete Streets" principles to the planning, design, and construction of all new city transportation improvement projects.
Despite the accolades and the policies, "complete streets" in Baltimore County and Baltimore City still feel foreign. Too many incidences of tragic pedestrian, bicycle, and vehicle crashes get blamed on user error than engineering design.
Neighborhoods with the Highest Pedestrian Death Rates
View maps of a few of the nation's deadliest places for pedestrians.
BY MIKE MACIAG, Governing
Baltimore County, Maryland, Census Tract #452400
Of all tracts with at least 3,000 residents, this tract in Baltimore County recorded the highest death rate. Nine pedestrians lost their lives, with most occurring in the area surrounding the Eastpoint Mall west of downtown Baltimore.
The large shopping center is flanked by an eight-lane highway to the south (where four deaths occurred) and a six-lane roadway to the north.