Walking To Eliminate Traffic

By: Elizabeth Donatelli Email
By: Elizabeth Donatelli Email

January 24, 2006

If you drive in and out of Charlottesville and the surrounding area, chances are you've run into traffic. Now one government agency is trying to shorten your commute without talking about cars.

It's a program that focuses on walking and biking instead of driving to give commuters more options.

In the counties there are plenty of things working against alternative modes of transportation. That's everything from crosswalks not being marked, to sidewalks just ending, to utility poles being built in the middle of the path, but the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) is hoping to change that.

Some ideas are to put bike racks on buses like Charlottesville does and striping crosswalks and adding more signs.

Right now VDOT dedicates 2 percent of the money on paving projects to go towards alternative modes of transportation.

"If we can get more people to walk, to ride their bikes, yes it certainly helps. Every car that's not being used is one less car on the road and potentially can alleviate some of the congestion and the need to widen existing roads and build new roads," said Lou Hatter, spokesman for VDOT.

There are dense areas of Albemarle that still need more sidewalks like Hollymeade, but other areas like Crozet are getting more with current road improvements.

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