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Milvia Street Bikeway Campaign Starts

Author: Bike East Bay

Date: December 12, 2015

We will be asking Berkeley City Council to kick off the start to this project. We will update this page soon on details about the data of this City Council action, expected January 24, 2017

Milvia Street Bikeway Design Options

Cal’s [IN]City Summer City & Regional Planning Program redesigned Milvia Street in Downtown Berkeley with several new bikeway options, which Bike East Bay is ready to make happen, with your volunteer help. We have an opportunity to make this a high priority in Berkeley’s update Bicycle Plan, and get it built by Summer 2018.

Here are the design options

  • One-Way Protected Bike Lanes each side: some parking removal
    Curbside, protected bike lanes are provided on each side of Milvia St. The bike lanes are approximately 6 ft wide, and are protected by parked cars on some of the blocks. For this option, we estimate that less than 5% of available parking spaces on and within one block of Milvia St need to be removed for this option.
  • One-Way Protected Bike Lanes each side: parking removal both sides of some blocks
    Curbside, protected bike lanes, as in Option 1, but with additional parking removal south of Channing Way, to make room for complete bike lanes separated from moving cars. For this option, we estimate that 10-20% of available parking spaces on and within one block of Milvia St need to be removed for this option.
  • Two-Way Protected Bike lanes
    A two-way, protected cycle track is provided on the east side of Milvia Street, with protection from traffic. Parking is maintained in front of City Hall and along Berkeley High School. For this option, we estimate that 10-20% of available parking spaces on and within one block of Milvia St need to be removed for this option.

    An advantage of a two-way bikeway on the east side of Milvia St is that it avoids the drop-off, pick-up maze of cars, buses and shuttles along Berkeley High School in the mornings and afternoons of school days. Students bicycling on the two-way cycle track can easily cross over Milvia St to the high school at marked crosswalks.

    Pluses and minuses of One-Way vs Two-Way Protected Bikeways

Popup Protected Bike Lanes on Milvia St on Bike to Work Day 2015

Check out the excitement in Berkeley on Bike to Work Day 2015 when Bike East Bay partnered with Berkeley High School, the City of Berkeley, UC Berkeley, and the Berkeley Downtown Y to set up a one-day protected bike lane on the blocks of Milvia St in front of City Hall. It was a lot of fun.

Downtown Shopping Patterns Support Bicycling

Cal’s Summer planning program also conducted a shopping intercept survey showing that 72% of shoppers walk, bike and take transit to Downtown Berkeley, and that individually they each spend more money than shoppers who drive. This shopping data augments similar data from the GoBerkeley Program showing only 27% of shoppers drive, and is consistent with last year’s shopper survey in the Temescal District conducted by Cal as well, which showed people walking, bicycling and taking transit spend the most money along Telegraph Ave.

Students from the [IN]City Program interviewed over 300 shoppers and found that people who bicycle on average spend $520/month, 31% higher than people who drive. Shoppers walking spent 21% more and shoppers taking transit 29% more. One factor for the spending differences is that people who walk, bike and take transit make more frequent trips each month. The bottom line? “To increase business, merchants should cater to people who bike,” says Danielle Glaser from the [IN]City Summer Program.

Reconfigured Parking

The Summer Program also did a parking analysis showing that parking is not 100% utilized along Milvia Street, and this includes on-street parking on Milvia Street, on side streets and a lot of spaces in the Center Street garage, which is at 75% of capacity currently and will be rebuilt to add an additional 311 parking spaces. Protected bike lanes on Milvia Street may require the relocation of on-street parking spaces in order to create comfortable, safe bike lanes for people of all ages and abilities to get to and from Downtown. Our goal is to implement the Milvia Street Bikeway at the same time as the new parking garage reopens, which means that the car parking supply increases overall along the Milvia Street corridor. 

What you can do:

  1. Come to Berkeley City Council when they agendize our ask to kick off the Milvia Street Bikeway project. Details coming soon.
  2. Who do you know?

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