Montgomery County Executive Isiah Leggett today celebrated the completion of the Shady Grove Access Bike Path that provides a safe pathway to the Shady Grove Metro Station for bicyclists and pedestrians and a connection to other area sidewalks and bikeways. By improving access to transit, residents may be encouraged to not only travel by bike, but also combine bicycle trips with buses, Metro and walking.
“This bike path is an important component in increasing safe access for pedestrians and bicyclists as our Smart Growth Initiative (SGI) transforms the Shady Grove area into a walkable, bikeable community,” said Leggett. “By relocating old and overcrowded County government facilities to make way for a sustainable, transit-oriented community near the Shady Grove Metro, we are boosting the economic health and competitiveness of Montgomery County. To further enhance biking, Montgomery County will soon be installing a bike share station on the other side of the Shady Grove Metro Station -- part of a network of 51 stations with 450 bikes in the Rockville and Shady Grove areas and around the Metro Red Line inside the Beltway.”
The new, 10-foot bike path extends 4,700 feet from Shady Grove Road to Redland Road along the east side of the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority Metro Access Road. Included in the project is a bikeway ramp from the new bike path to an existing bikeway on Crabbs Branch Way. To enhance safety, a pedestrian-activated traffic signal was installed at the crossing to the Metro station.
“Through the Transportation Alternatives Program, the Maryland State Highway Administration continues to demonstrate its commitment to providing safe access for bicyclists and pedestrians, and the Shady Grove Metro Access Bike Path is a welcome piece of infrastructure that will expand transportation options in Montgomery County,” said Administrator Melinda B. Peters. “Many thanks to the County for continuing to partner with the State to improve safety, strengthen communities, and enhance the quality of life for Maryland residents and visitors.”
The Montgomery County Department of Transportation (MCDOT) is planning additional improvements to extend bike connections along Needwood Road, eventually connecting to the ICC (Inter-County Connector) and to Rock Creek Regional Park.
“We are pleased with the completion of Montgomery County’s project to improve bicycle and pedestrian access to the Shady Grove station,” said Richard Sarles, Metro General Manager and CEO. “Better bicycle and pedestrian access to transit reduces traffic congestion and saves our riders money.”
Bike parking is available at the Shady Grove Metro Station. The County’s Bikeshare program will have a station located on the west side of the Shady Grove Metro -- part of a 21-bike station system with 200 bikes that will be installed in the Rockville and Shady Grove/Life Sciences Center area. The downcounty bikeshare system will have 30 stations with 250 bikes located along both of the Red Line Metrorail corridors between the District of Columbia and the Beltway.
About 50 percent of the total project cost of $2.7 million came from the Federal Transportation Enhancement Program, with the remainder funded by County general obligation bonds. Construction of the bikeway took about 14 months.
Leggett’s SGI is a cost-neutral strategy that will provide substantial economic opportunities for future growth while implementing the goals of the Shady Grove Sector Plan. Among its other goals, the SGI will create a transit-oriented bioscience enclave at the Shady Grove Life Sciences Center that will increase the County’s competitiveness.
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