Issue: 6     

August 2012    

Walk Bike News banner

The Newsletter of the Hillsborough County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO)

Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee (BPAC) & Livable Roadways Committee (LRC)


Hillsborough Bicycle Safety Action Plan Receives National Award of Excellence
Bicycle Safety Action Plan Receives Award

The U.S. Department of Transportation honored the Hillsborough County MPO with a Transportation Planning Excellence Award (TPEA) for the Hillsborough Countywide Bicycle Safety Action Plan. The MPO and consultant Tindale Oliver used crash data to pinpoint chronic safety problems. The MPO also brought together multiple agencies to develop solutions for implementation over the next 5 years. The judges favorably considered the approach involving multiple agencies in collaborative solutions.   


The Federal Highway Administration and Federal Transit Administration co-sponsored this biennial awards program along with the American Planning Association and the Transportation Research Board to celebrate outstanding transportation planning practices in communities across the country. The Bicycle Safety Action Plan was one of ten winners out of 50 applications submitted from around the country.


For further information on the Bicycle Safety Action Plan, contact Gena Torres at, or 813/273-3774 x 357.


Walk-Bike Plan Completed for Unincorporated Hillsborough County Roads
bicyclists and pedestrians

Image courtesy of 


To figure out what can be built right away to reduce crash risk, the MPO recently completed a study of high pedestrian and bicycle crash locations in the unincorporated area.  Engineers analyzed high-crash corridors including Waters Avenue west of Florida Avenue, Bruce B Downs Boulevard from Fletcher Avenue to Tampa's city limits (north of 43rd Street), and Bloomingdale Avenue from U.S. 301 to Lithia-Pinecrest Road. The MPO worked closely with the County's Public Works staff to develop a list of recommended improvements and cost estimates for each corridor. The recommendations include:

  • Intersection crosswalk restriping
  • Bike lanes
  • Right-turn islands with pedestrian activated signals
  • Mid-block crossing
  • Roadway lighting
  • Expanded safety education initiatives such as WalkWise Tampa Bay 

As a complementary effort to this project, MPO staff recently completed an on-line survey addressing bicycling and walking in our community.  The majority of comments identified safer, more visible bike lanes as a critical need.


For more information, view the  Walk Bike Plan for Unincorporated Hillsborough County or contact Michele Ogilvie at or 813 273 3774 x 354. 


Florida's Bicycle Friendliness Ranked #21

Florida Bike Friendly Report Card


In case you haven't heard, Florida was just ranked #21 in League of American Bicyclists' Bicycle Friendly States rankings.  The states of Washington, Minnesota and Massachusetts received the highest rankings from the League in 2012.   Florida's ranking have gone up and down in the last few years, with an average ranking of 18.4: 2012: #21, 2011: #7, 2010: #12, 2009: #32 and  2008: #20.


The questionnaire was revamped for this last ranking, to make the process more objective.  Hopefully this will set a more solid benchmark from which to work on improvements.  In the most recent ranking (with 5 points being the highest) Florida got:

  • 4 for Policies and Programs, such as Complete Streets, trails, and carbon reduction plans
  • 3 for Legislation and Enforcement, including cyclist' rights and responsibilities, police training, etc
  • 3 for Infrastructure and Funding,  such as coverage of roads equipped with bike lanes, spending on bike facilities, etc
  • 3 for Education and Encouragement, dealing with public safety campaigns and bike tourism
  • 2 for Evaluation and Planning, including safety plans, bicycle commuting and crash rates

So although we have a good basis in policies and programs, we have lots of opportunities to improve in other areas. The report gives specific recommendations for where Florida can work on improvements, including adopting a vulnerable road user law, starting a "share the road" campaign, and dedicating state safety funds to bicycle projects and programs.


For more information, please visit the  League of American Bicyclists.


Nebraska Avenue to get better sidewalks from Busch Boulevard to Fowler Avenue  

FDOT Nebraska Ave repaving/sidewalk repair



The Florida Department of Transportation's contractor is repaving 1.5 miles of Nebraska Avenue (U.S. 41) between Busch Boulevard and Fowler Avenue. Sidewalks will be repaired throughout the project. Also, the existing traffic signals and poles will be replaced with new ones at Linebaugh Avenue, Bougainvillea Avenue and 109th Avenue. This $1.5 million project is expected to be complete in the fall of 2012.


For more information contact Marian Scorza at or 813/975-6038.


Tampa's Ride of Silence   

Tampa Ride of Silence 2012

Photo courtesy of Alan Snel 


On a very stormy evening in May, a group of more than twenty cyclists took  to the streets of Tampa as part of the worldwide 10th annual Ride of Silence. The Ride of Silence event remembers cyclists who have been killed and injured in traffic crashes and raises public awareness about bicycle safety.

For Hillsborough County, the ride is significant. From December 24th in 2011 through April 30th 2012 (129 days), nine cyclists were killed in crashes in Hillsborough.  That's an average of one bicyclist killed every 14 days. Seven cyclists were killed in just the first four months of this year.

The Tampa Ride of Silence started at the  Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park and followed a path through Downtown Tampa, riding in front of Courthouses, County Center and City Hall before heading through West Tampa and heading back to Downtown.  Cyclists ride in silence, wearing armbands - black for cyclists who were killed in traffic crashes or red for injured cyclists. All riders wore helmets on bicycles equipped with head lights and tail lights.

For more information and photos of the event, see  Alan Snel's blog post on Tampa's Ride of Silence.


Temple Terrace  Promotes Sharing The Road 

Temple Terrace Signage

Photo courtesy of Robert Gordon  


In an effort to make Temple Terrace less automobile dependent, the City has implemented an aggressive signage campaign. "Share The Road" signs with both bicycle and golf cart images are being installed on several local roads each yYear, on Druid Hills Road, Whiteway Drive, Ridgedale Road, Gillette Avenue, Sunnyside Road, and South Riverhills Drive. The signs, which are MUTCD standard, encourage alternative modes of transportation consistent with the City's Multimodal Transportation District (MTD) plan, adopted in 2009.

In addition to signage, the plan includes improvements to area bus shelters, new bicycle lanes  and sidewalks to help facilitate an active and healthy lifestyle for the residents of Temple Terrace. This past May, the City also expanded its golf cart ordinance to allow users on all local roads. While not allowed on state and county roads such as North 56th Street and East Fowler Avenue, the City plans to petition FDOT for permission to allow crossings at key intersections. Appropriate signage and their locations will be identified in the future.

For more information contact Pierre Valles at or 813/506-6564. 

 Green Bike Lanes for Naples Community  

Naples Green Bike Lanes


Green lanes are next-generation bikeways being built on streets across the country, from San Francisco to New York City, from Minneapolis to Miami and from Long Beach to Pittsburgh.  Green lanes are dedicated, inviting spaces for people on bikes in the roadway.  They can be protected from motor vehicles by curbs, planters, posts, or parked cars.  They are separated from sidewalks.  Some are painted green.  The lanes are carefully engineered with rigorous attention to safety, efficiency, and ease of travel for all street users.


The Bayshore community in East Naples is slated to start painting all of the bike lanes green along the 1.4-mile stretch along Bayshore Drive from U.S. 41 East to Thomasson Drive.   The Bayshore Beautification Municipal Services Taxing Unit is paying for the $90,000 project with local taxes that were set aside to pay for beautification improvements, which include bicycle and pedestrian improvements.


For more information watch a video of David Bucheit, project manager for the Bayshore Beautification Municipal Service Taxing Unit (MSTU), discuss the benefits of green bike lanes in Naples.


Walking & Biking Increased in Cities Investing in Sidewalks and Trails 

Federal Highway Admin NTPP

Photo courtesy of Alan Snel 



A recent report to Congress estimates that in 2010, walking or bicycling saved 16 million miles that would have otherwise been driven, and an estimated 32 million driving miles were averted between 2007 and 2010.

A non-motorized transportation pilot program tracked how walking and bicycling networks influenced walking and bicycling rates in four different communities. Counts in the four pilot communities (Columbia, MO, Minneapolis, MN, Sheyboygan County, WI and Marin County, CA) demonstrated an average increase of 49% in the number of bicyclists and a 22% increase in the number of pedestrians between 2007 and 2010.


For the pilot communities as a whole, bicycling mode share increased 36%, walking mode share increased 14%, and driving mode share decreased 3% between 2007 and 2010. The study also documented the health benefits of walking and bicycling: additional non-motorized trips in the pilot communities in 2010 reduced the economic cost of mortality by an estimated $6.9 million.


While each pilot community experienced increases in bicycling and walking from 2005 to 2009, fatal bicycle and pedestrian crashes held steady or decreased in all of the communities.  Moreover, in 2010 the pilot communities saved an estimated 22 pounds of CO2 per person or a total of 7,701 tons. This is equivalent to saving over 1 gallon of gas per person or nearly 1.7 million gallons from 2007 to 2010.


Thousands of people were reached by training classes, personalized outreach, and other educational and promotional activities; many people tried bicycling for the first time in their adults lives or ever.


For more information, visit the FHWA's Non-motorized Transportation Pilot Program (NTPP) site.

Florida Driver's Handbook: Share the Road!    


After a lobbying campaign by bicycle/pedestrian advocates, the new 2012 Florida Driver's Handbook has been revised to reinforce Florida laws requiring motorists to respect and share the road with pedestrians and bicyclists.  For example, the Handbook cautions motorists to expect bicyclists on all types of roadways except Interstate highways, and reminds drivers that the law requires motorists to reduce their speed and give cyclists three feet of clearance.  It also stresses safety rules for motorists regarding pedestrians, including the requirement for turning motorists stop for pedestrians at all intersections and driveways.   


View the 2012 Florida Driver's Handbook.



Trenda McPherson Appointed Statewide Bicycle/Pedestrian Safety Program Manager

FDOT bicycle pedestrian safety


 The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) announced the appointment of Ms. Trenda McPherson as the Bicycle/Pedestrian Safety Program Manager in the State Safety Office.  In this assignment, Trenda will be instrumental in the delivery of FDOT Secretary Ananth Prasad's Bicycle/Pedestrian focused initiative to reduce Florida's high pedestrian fatalities and serious injuries. 


Trenda and her team will continue to support the Statewide Bicycle/Pedestrian Coordinator requirements and other bicycle and pedestrian initiatives through a partnered approach with FDOT's District Offices as well as the Department's Planning, Design, ADA, Traffic Operations, Construction and Maintenance offices in Tallahassee.  She can be contacted at 850/245-1528 or


New Bicycling Stamps Issued  

New Bicycle Stamps Issued


In June, the U.S. Postal Service issued stamps that celebrate bicycling, one of the most popular outdoor activities in the country.  Each of the four colorful stamps features a different kind of bike and rider: a young child just learning to ride with training wheels, a commuter pedaling to work, a road racer intent on the finish line, and an airborne BMX rider.


Recent surveys indicate that Americans enjoy billions of bike rides a year. Bicycling organizations around the country report increased participation in local biking activities, and nearly half of all Americans say they would like more bicycling resources, such as trails and bike lanes, in their communities.


Bicycling is a low-impact aerobic activity that just about everyone - from young children to retirees - can enjoy. The health benefits are impressive. Riding a bike lowers the risk of obesity, heart disease, and breast cancer while improving muscle tone and strength.  Bicycling can also lower stress. Whether riding along a lakeside path or through the bike lanes of a bustling city, bicycling is therapeutic and just plain fun.


Visit USPS' Beyond the Perf for more information.


 Jane Jacobs Walk Explores Nebraska Avenue


The Jane Jacobs Walk is a program of the Center for the Living City, intended to help people walk, observe, and connect with their built environment.  The program's namesake, Jane Jacobs, was a self-taught journalist and widely influential theorist in the realm of urban planning and livable communities.


Participants in Tampa's Jane Jacobs Walk in early May explored Nebraska Avenue: the neighborhood link between Ybor, Tampa Heights and Seminole Heights.  As pointed out in a recent blog, "the nature of Nebraska Avenue has changed ... culminating into a slow-spreading transformation" made up of bustling restaurants, an art school, fitness center and other points of interest resulting in a more walkable and enjoyable setting.


agency wide epub badge no background
In This Issue
MPO Receives Transportation Planning Excellence Award
Walk Bike Plan Completed
Florida's Bicycle Friendliness Drops
Nebraska Ave Gets Better Sidewalks
Tampa's Ride of Silence
Temple Terrace Shares their Roads
Green Bike Lanes
Non-Motorized Transportation Pilot Program
FL Handbook: Share the Road
Welcome Trenda McPherson
New Bicycling Postage Stamps
Tampa's Jane Jacobs Walk


Upcoming Meetings  


FDOT Bike & Ped Roundtable 

8:00am, 08/06/12  

View flyer/agenda  


USF Center for Urban Transportation Research

202 E Fowler Ave

Tampa FL 33620-5375  



LRC : 9:00 am, 08/22/12



11201 N McKinley Dr

Tampa, FL 33612 



BPAC : 5:30 pm, 09/12/12


Planning Commission Boardroom

601 E Kennedy Blvd,

18th Floor, Tampa, FL 33602 




 View All eNews button 


 About BPAC & LRC button 


 Join our mailing list MPO 




Find us on Facebook 


Follow us on Twitter