Monday, June 22, 2009

Lyons to Boulder Trail comments needed/open house!

Hey All, on Tues 6/23, there is an open house meeting for the Lyons to Boulder Regional Trail. This is a regional connector that will run loosely along the feeder canal that runs from Lyons to the Boulder Reservoir. 2 years ago we, as voters, approved an additional transportation tax (ie not open space) that provided for this connector specifically. It is meant not only as a recreational trail, but as something commuters could use off of the road to connect Lyons and rural parts of Boulder County to Boulder and beyond.

The open house is from 4pm to 8pm at Barn A of the Boulder County fairgrounds in Longmont. It will be a walk thru open house with no formal presentation. What does that mean? It means that they are soliciting feedback on the trail alignments they've come up with thus far. Boulder County has been soliciting information on this trail for months. They've come up with 3 different possible trail alignments. We have version A, version B, and version C to familiarize ourselves with. Take a look at the entire deal at the Lyons to Boulder Trail website. Please read over everything and be informed.

After reviewing all of the information, I think it'd be great if we all rallyed for option C. Option C will, without a doubt, be the most politically difficult option, but it is also the option with the least amount of existing road. Option A and B both line out alignment alternatives that use existing roads, dirt and paved. We want this to be a regional trail, not a route. I did not vote for that tax thinking we'd get some spraypaint on a road, let's do this right.

If you can't make the open house (and that's ok) make sure you send a email to Lyonstoboulder@bouldercounty.org. They are accepting public comments for a short period longer.

Here's a copy of the letter I sent. Feel free to copy. You'll have to change a couple of things, though :)

"Hello. First off want to say thanks for working on the Lyons to Boulder trail thus far. It's a huge project and we (Lyons area cyclists) are very appreciative of it. I'm a family man, a bike shop owner, a bicycle rider, and a resident of Lyons. Based on all of these things, plus relying on input from Lyons area bicycle commuters, I support option C.

Option C makes the most sense for several reasons:

Families - Option C has the least amount of existing passenger car and truck road possible. I understand there may be some small sections to get this completed, but we are looking for a trail that is not part of existing road - not a "route" of mostly existing roads. I want to feel safe if I take my family on a bike ride to Boulder Res. With a 6yo and a 3yo, I am not comfortable with alignments on the road.

Bike Shop Owner/resident of Lyons - The amount of people that will use this route is inversely proportionate to the amount of road. More road, less users. Less road, more users. More users of this regional trail would support my business and my town. Doing so would yeild more sales taxes for the state, the county, the town of Lyons, and RTD. This is one real area where transportation spending can yeild huge profitable benefits. Boulder County et all will be paid on the cost of construction. This is an investment.

Bicycle Rider/Commuter - The more I ride my bike on the road and drive my car on the road, the less I like biking on the road! I feel unsafe on the road and am looking for a seperated trail to use for commuting as well as recreation. The on road alignments are primarily on two lane/no shoulder roads or on existing dirt/farm roads. Neither are optimal for bicycle use. Please keep in mind that this trail will see a lot of use by night time commuters from Lyons and rural parts heading to Niwot, Gunbarrel, and Boulder. Less roads will make for safer night time passage for all.

Option C also meets the most objectives in the Draft Decision Matrix Summary. These objectives are:
*User Experience
*Safety
*Public Landowner Impact (ie the NCWCD will see improvements all along it's ditch)
*Connectivity
*Cost (it is important to look at the long range picture, not strictly the up front cost of building. Think investment).

I understand that there are several issues facing this trail, mostly with regard to land ownership and land management. The transportation tax that we passed that provided funding for this project meant that we are serious about connecting Boulder County via non automobile alternatives. Let's do it right."

Please, please, please, please get on this!

9 comments:

Itty Bitty Betty said...

Dave, thanks for posting this and soliciting input. I agree that Option C is the best one proposed. My question for Boulder County is 'why can't Option C follow the feeder canal north of Nelson Road, as Options A and B do?' This would provide an option with minimal road sections. As currently laid out, Option C routes trail users onto roads instead of the feeder canal for this section. Since other options propose the non-road route, I don't know why Option C can't.

EricBikeCO said...

All options suck rocks. as previously posted, why can't one option follow the feeder canal the whole way? Until you provide that option or explain why it can't happen, I vote for nothing. I should have known I was flushing *MORE* of my moeny down the toilet giving it to Boulder government ot do anything with it.

I voted for this thinking it was going to be a hard surface that would work for a road bike tire. Most people will not ride road bed on a road bike. I want you lolly-gagging dingbats that think 12 mph is "fast" off of US36 so I can actually get somewhere on a weekend.

And on that note, when I scream "on your left" and you are riding two-abreast on US36 at 12mph, GET THE HELL OUT OF MY WAY! I am not going into the traffic lane because you are a rude moron.

We are having a civilization and we all have equal access to the road; cars, bikes, fast riders, slow riders. If I'm nice enough to call out, get over, jerky boy. The "team kit" (put in quotes because there is no way you lardos race and belong to a team, nor does riding 100 miles a week make you a bike stud) you are wearing does not make you faster than me. Frankly nothing can make you faster than me.

*That* is why we need a straightforward paved trail ... to get you into a "gee look at the pretty scenery" situation that equals your motivation to pedal.

redstone said...

Great comments both of you. Please take the time to write Boulder County and give them your thoughts as well.

Itty Bitty Betty said...

Easy Eric! A friend just contacted Boulder County and they are quite amenable to a route that blends the options. Please send them a nice email asking them to do so, using a route that sticks to the feeder canal or other off-road trail whenever possible. Also, the Boulder County person said any alignment that appears to be on a road would be a separate gravel trail off just off the road. This would only pertain to the northernmost section if the options were blended to achieve max canal feeder alignment, and only until the St. Vrain Greenways portion gets approved.

Itty Bitty Betty said...

Oh - and North of Hygiene Rd the alignments are on a new trail through CEMEX property that is not along a road or along the canal. Probably nicer than along the canal,
which is kind of industrial in spots up there.

Itty Bitty Betty said...

Oh Eric - I guess I didn't read your comment too carefully. I'm sorry you thought this was going to be a paved path.

dougm said...

I'm fine with non-paved, actually preferred. Make my road bike even more obsolete and along with Valmont Bike Park would push me to get a cross bike. I could cross or mtb to work- opens up some nicer options when not in a rush. If in a rush I'll take my chances on the US36. Weekends hook up the burley to cross bike and take the kids out there.
Whether paved or non-paved I don't see this drawing the traffic Boulder County is claiming- how'd they get their estimate?

Brian said...

+1 for Doug's words.

Tree said...

+1 more for Doug. Roadies aren't going to ride the trail paved or non-paved.