City unveils new design for bike system

ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – The city unveiled a new design for the city’s bike system, plans that would nearly double the city’s paved bike routes from around 500 miles to 1,000.

Five years ago, the city decided the bike system needed a big update. The current trail systems date back to the early 1990s and the on-street plan back to 2000.

The new plan, researched and revised since 2009, connects the trail system and the on-street system together.

Planners say the new design is worth the investment.

“It’s also great for the environment to have more people biking instead of driving every day to and from work,” said Christina Sandoval with Parks and Recreation. “It’s important for our community to be healthy.”

Safety features, like barriers between cyclists and drivers along certain corridors are included in the plan.

“Some drivers of cars are not very aware of cyclists, and I think cyclists have to be extremely aware and defensive,” said cyclist Susan Zimmerman.

The plan also addresses how to educate drivers.

It includes a proposal to add questions about sharing the road to drivers’ tests.

The paths would be installed over the next five to 10 years.

It would take streets like Zuni, for example, from four lanes to two, adding dedicated bike lanes.

“Albuquerque has one of the biggest networks of bike facilities in the country,” said Chris Marsh with New Mexico Touring Society. “It’s great to see them focus on this and fix some of the issues that we have.”

City Council will consider adopting the plan in the late fall.

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