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Hagerstown considers adding bicycle lanes

July 10, 2009|By DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN -- A proposal to make it easier for bicyclists to get around Hagerstown should be ready within the next few months.

City Engineer Rodney Tissue said city officials have been working with bicycle enthusiasts and representatives from the State Highway Administration to determine the feasibility of creating bicycle lanes on several city streets, including Pennsylvania Avenue and Locust and Jonathan streets.

"It's all in the works," Tissue said. "There's nothing finalized."

If everything goes as planned, the proposal could be presented to the Hagerstown City Council for discussion in September, Tissue said.

The city improved bicycle recreation two years ago with the construction of the Hub City Bike Loop, a 10-mile path that connects City Park to historic neighborhoods.

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Councilman Lewis C. Metzner said implementing the current proposal wouldn't be very expensive because it primarily would involve posting signs and painting stripes for the bicycle lanes.

The proposal also is an attempt to encourage people to use bicycles to commute, Metzner said.

"It's an overall look at what we can do to make bicycling more acceptable in the city," Metzner said. "This council is very committed to recreation and exercise ... city government has taken a green turn."

Metzner said the proposal would have to be approved by the City Board of Traffic & Parking, a committee on which he serves, before it goes to the council.

He said the proposal is a good one so far.

Metzner said the proposal also would include the installation of bicycle racks for secure parking.

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