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Alaska Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan: An Integral Part of Vision 2020, Alaska’s Long-Range Statewide Transportation Plan
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  • Abstract:
    The purpose of the Alaska Bicycle & Pedestrian Plan, an integral part of Vision 2020: Alaska's Long Range Statewide Transportation Plan, is to present a framework for a practical, workable Bicycle/Pedestrian program in the State of Alaska. The Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act of 1991 (ISTEA) requires each state to incorporate a long-term bicycle & pedestrian plan into its long range transportation plan. While the focus of this plan is on bicycles and pedestrians, we recognize that many of the facilities provided for these modes are readily usable by other forms of transportation such as in-line skating, equestrians, Nordic skiing, and, depending on local ordinances and season: snowmobiles or all-terrain vehicles. By providing safe, well-designed, all-season paths, trails, lanes, sidewalks and other facilities, this plan is intended to develop practical non-motorized transportation alternatives - primarily to the use of motorized single-occupant vehicles (SOV). In conjunction with other transportation choices, this can reduce congestion on our more heavily-traveled roads, reduce air and water pollution, and in general improve the quality of life in Alaska. Despite Alaska's northern climate, non-motorized transportation such as bicycling and walking can be a viable transportation choice. For example, a small group of bicyclists in Fairbanks do not allow sub-zero temperatures to deter them. But deep snow berms at the edge of the road, where they normally would ride, frustrate not only these hardy cyclists but pedestrians as well. Virtually all transportation trips involve, at some point, a pedestrian element. For some, this pedestrian element may be in a wheelchair or with some other assistive device. Planning and designing transportation systems that allow each individual to make the transportation modal choice that best suits them is one of the goals of the transportation department. By referring to this document, an individual will find the goals of the Alaska Bicycle & Pedestrian Program, specific steps that will accomplish those goals, and steps that lead to selection and funding of a particular bicycle or pedestrian project.
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