Lehi City planners researched and developed a new bicycle and pedestrian master plan and held the first open house on Wednesday, May 18 to receive feedback from residents.
“There is a lot of momentum across the country to make cities more bicycle and pedestrian friendly,” said Lehi City planner Brittney Harris. “We try to find out where people want to cycle or walk so that we can create a safe route for them to get there.”
The map of all current and future Lehi bike paths is at engagelehi.com. Anyone can view the map, but must be logged into the website to make suggestions.
City planner Mike West has literally gone the extra mile on his bike, often with a go-pro camera strapped to his helmet, to see where the city can improve routes. “Lehi’s biggest problem right now is that some areas are not yet developed and some are, so there is a gap between completed roads. Developers will finish ahead of their developments, but that leaves the city to finish the rest,” West said.
Lehi resident Greg Freestone rode his bike to the open house to give valuable feedback based on his extensive riding experience. “My biggest comment is that bike lanes generally result in worse behavior from motorists, unless it’s a protected bike lane,” Freestone said. “The bike lane on Pioneer Crossing is really bad, I won’t ride that road – first of all the debris is terrible, but also because there is a bike lane motorists don’t think they have to move, so they pass right by you I’d rather go up Fifth North in a traffic lane than Fifth North in a bike path next to a traffic lane.
Freestone commutes on his bike from his home to Adobe for work, as well as for exercise and fun, which amounts to up to 100 miles per week. His favorite local ride is American Fork Canyon where he says motorists are more aware and give bikes a lot of room.
“As a rule, when I plan my trips, I try to avoid Lehi’s roads. Saratoga Springs and Eagle Mountain have plenty of bike trails. American Fork added a lot,” Freestone told Lehi City planners.
The City will be receiving suggestions for several more weeks as it develops the new Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan.