Bicycle Infrastructure Development
Multiple citizen surveys have shown a desire for bicycle infrastructure improvements. The 2010 National Citizen Survey, which compares the satisification of Wichita residents to the satisfication of citizens in other similar cities, indicated that the satisfication of Wichita residents with the ease of bicycle travel in the city is "much below" the satisification of residents in comparable cities. It was one of the three least positive ratings by the citizens of Wichita. In response to this information, the Wichita Bicycle Master Plan was developed. The planning process helped community stakeholders to learn more about the bicycling related needs in Wichita and developed a community plan to recommend ways to improve conditions for bicycling.
The Wichita Bicycle Master Plan is a guide for the provision of bicycle related infrastructure, policies, and programs by the City of Wichita. Included within the plan are recommendations to develop a 149 mile Priority Bicycle Network as a transportation system to make it easier, safer, and more convenient for individuals to access jobs, run errands, and to make many other kinds of trips on a bicycle. The recommended Priority Bicycle Network transportation system can provide more choices, greater freedom, and reduced transportation costs.
The estimated costs to develop the 149 mile Priority Bicycle Network over 10 years is approximately 1.4 percent of the nearly $899 million the City plans to spend on bridges, roads, and highways over the 10 year period from 2011-2020 (see Figure 1). It is financially feasible for the City to construct the 149-mile Priority Bicycle Network over the next 10 years if City funding is utilized to leverage other available funding. The current 2011-2020 City Capital Improvement Plan contains a line item for bike enhancements funded at $500,000 every other year. If the $500,000 every other year is continued for the 10-year span of the Plan (2013-2023), then approximately $2.5 million in City funding would be available for stand-alone bicycle infrastructure improvements. It is anticipated that the City funding can be utilized to leverage approximately four times as much ($10 million) non-city funding targeted for bicycle transportation projects. This would result in $12.5 to develop bicycle infrastructure over 10 years. Examples of non-city funding that could be utilized to develop the Priority Bicycle Network include the Congestion Air Quality Management funds and Transport Alternatives funding. Many of the potential non-city funds are restricted to certain uses and are awarded through a competitive application process.
The planning level cost estimates to construct (not including design, contigencies, or administration fees) the 149-mile 10-year Priority Bicycle Network is $12.7 million. This represents approximately 1.4 percent of what the City plans to spend on roads, bridges, and highways from year 2011-2020. The planning level cost estimates are for developing the bicycle infrastructure as stand-alone projects. The costs to develop the Priority Bicycle Network may be less if some of the facilities are developed through routine accomodation (added during major road construction/maintenance). It is generally less expensive to develop bicycle infrastructure through routine accomodation than as stand-alone projects. The anticipated costs to complete the 10-year Priority Bicycle Network is approximately equal to the potential resources available.
Bicycle Infrastructure Maintenance and Replacement
Existing facilities and new bicycle facilities will need to be maintained overtime. Proper maintenance will improve safety, use, and lifespan of the facilities. Funding to rebuild or replace facilities at the end of their life-span will also be required. The Planning Level Costs Calculator can be used to determine planning level estimates for the costs to both maintain and replace bicycle facilities.
Using the Planning Level Costs Calculator, it is estimated that the average annual cost increase to maintain the Priority Bikeways Network as it is developed over 10 years will be approximately $55,000, or less than half of one percent of the $16.8 million annual City budget for pavement maintenance; pavement cleaning; and maintenance of signs and signals. At full construction of the 149 mile Priority Bikeways Network, it is estimated that the annual maintenance cost will be approximately $525,000, or 3 percent of the $16.8 million City budget for pavement maintenance; pavement cleaning; and maintenance of signs and signals. At full build out of the 149 mile Priority Bikeways Network after 10 years, the estimated annual budget allocation necessary for replacement of the new infrastructure is estimated to be approximately $540,000, or approximately less than 1 percent of the average annual City Capital Improvement Program allocation for investments in roads, bridges, and freeways.
1The $899 million dollar estimate is what has been allocated for the arterials, bridges, and freeways categories of the 2011-2020 CIP using funding from a variety of sources including federal, state, and other funding, minus the funding allocated for the bicycle enhancements and Redbud Path I-135 to Oliver projects.
2This estimate is based on the $899 million dollar estimate is what has been allocated over 10 years for the arterials, bridges, and freeways areas of the 2011-2020 CIP using funding from a variety of sources including federal, state, and other funding, minus the funding allocated for the bicycle enhancements and Redbud Path I-135 to Oliver projects.