Online survey seeks input on state-wide walking, biking plan


FILE- In this photo taken Sept. 23, 2018, a mountain biker pedals past a No E-bikes sign in the San Bernardino National Forest near Big Bear Lake, Calif. Electric-assist bikes represent the fastest-growing bicycle segment in the United States, but regulators are still grappling with how to treat them. The National Park Service currently considers them motorized vehicles and bans them from most bicycle paths. But 22 states have adopted definitions that treat electric-assist bikes more or less like regular bicycles. (AP Photo/Brian Melley)

COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — State transportation officials are seeking the Ohio public’s help in developing their first policy plan for walking and biking.

The Ohio Department of Transportation says an online survey and upcoming public meetings will be crucial to ensuring that the Walk.Bike.Ohio plan meets people’s needs.

The plan will guide bike and pedestrian policy-making and infrastructure investment decisions. It is driven by increased demand, demographic shifts and safety concerns.

Ohio saw a 60% increase in pedestrian-related fatalities and a 22% increase in bicycle fatalities between 2009 and 2018. Twenty-two cyclists and 135 pedestrians were killed last year.

The state has more than 1,800 miles of off-road, shared-use paths today, and more than 250 miles of state-park bike trails. Another 3,000 miles of state and federal bike routes are proposed throughout the state.

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Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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