Pedestrian and Bicycle Planning and Implementation
Staff Contact: Kathy Schlabach
Planning for Pedestrian and Bicycle Improvements
Bicycle and pedestrian planning began with the Baltimore County Master Plan 2010. The master plan called for the creation of a countywide plan focused on improving the County's transportation system for pedestrian and bicycle use, in response to growing concerns related to motorized vehicle traffic congestion and health. The countywide planning process was undertaken nearly 15 years ago and resulted in the adoption of two plans, the Eastern and Western Pedestrian and Bicycle Access Plans.
Implementing Pedestrian and Bicycle Improvements
Since 2011, the Eastern and Western plans are being actively implemented. Constructing infrastructure such as sidewalks and bike lanes is just one aspect of creating an environment conducive for walking and bicycling. Supportive programs and oversight are needed to ensure that what is built is used safely and effectively.
Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Committee
The creation of a Pedestrian and Bicycle Advisory Committee (PBAC) was an important first step in implementation of the Eastern and Western plans. The PBAC provides oversight of the implementation process, recommending priorities for pedestrian and bicycle improvements and programs, and developing supportive policies and regulations.
Complete Streets Policy
Baltimore County adopted a Complete Streets Policy (PDF) in December 2012. The policy directs County agencies and developers to consider all types of users and transportation modes when constructing buildings and improving roads, and include facilities that will allow people to walk, bicycle or use transit where appropriate. The policy was developed by the PBAC and includes an annual review by the PBAC to assess its implementation.
Thanks largely to the Maryland Department of Transportation's Maryland Bikeways Program, several bicycle improvement projects for bike lanes and bike route signage have been constructed, and several more are in the detailed planning stages. Explore the Bicycle Facilities interactive map to view the County's existing on-road and off-road bicycle improvements, as well as those that are in the planning stages for implementation. More detailed information on the projects currently being implemented is available, and citizen input and feedback is welcome.
Every year, pedestrian projects are undertaken to improve conditions for walking. These projects are funded largely by Baltimore County's Capital Improvement Program, and are implemented by the Department of Public Works. Contact the Division of Highways Design if you are interested in pursuing a petition process to upgrade your street with sidewalks.
Pedestrian and Bicycle Planning E-newsletter
Sign up to receive the latest information about pedestrian and bicycle planning activities by subscribing to the County Pedestrian and Bicycle Access Plan E-Newsletter.