Fresno City Council disappoints residents who want more bike lanes and walking trails

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The goal of the Active Transportation Plan is to make it easier and safer to walk and bike throughout the city. (KFSN)

The goal of the Active Transportation Plan is to make it easier and safer to walk and bike throughout the city. North Fresno already has more bike lanes, and an extensive paved trail system, but the older parts of town where fewer residents have cars and more rely on bikes and walking have been left behind.

"I think we owe it to the residents that we make a commitment and we upgrade those neighborhoods, because they deserved the same type of services that every other Fresnan has," said Esmerelda Soria, City Council Member.

The proposed plans call for nearly tripling the nearly 500 miles of bike lanes and walking and biking trails throughout the city. But the question is which parts of town will get priority?

Nick Paladino of the Fresno Cycling Club believes the council should approve the Active Transportation Plan first, then prioritize.

" I am somewhat dismayed that it was delayed, I would like to see the whole process move forward. "

City Council President Clint Olivier put off the discussion, saying some council members wanted more time to study the details.

Making new bike lanes and trails in older neighborhoods requires more disruption of traffic and parking and more planning than in newer parts of town.

Esther Postiglione of the civic group Cultiva La Salud said she is hoping the council comes up with a fair way to prioritize the plan.

"We are in support of trying to make sure there are projects that do go to south Fresno that do help these neighborhoods that use active transportation, walking, biking, for their active travel so I do support giving more time to get it right."

The first phase of the plan, if implemented, will cost over $10-million but the total price tag could eventually top one billion dollars.

The council is now scheduled to take up the plan to improve walking and bicycle access throughout the city at their meeting on March 2nd.
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