Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Becoming Pedestrian and Bike Friendly

Recently I received the latest issue of "Land and People", the extraordinary quarterly publication of the Trust for Public Land. This publication is free and you can get a subscription through the TPL website.

The current issue has a great article about the Pinellas Bike Trail, "Biking to Florida’s Future." As Sarasota continues to move in the direction of being more pedestrian and biking friendly, our neighbors to the near north have much to offer in the way of examples:

Early on a fall Saturday morning, I swung my bike onto the Pinellas Trail near downtown St. Petersburg, Florida. A handlebar bag and rear rack held my belongings for a two-day ride. Stretching more than 33 miles north from St. Petersburg to Tarpon Springs, through one of Florida's most urbanized coastal counties, the Pinellas Trail is one of the nation's most successful rail trails. An energetic cyclist could easily complete the distance in a day, but my mission was to explore how the trail had positively transformed the communities it traversed. I'd be traveling about three-quarters of the trail, stopping overnight along the way and talking to a variety of people about the trail's impact.

Sarasota County has acquired land for a bike trail and the city will be working on the MURT this year. We believe that the MURT (Multiple Use Recreation Trail) will prove very popular and we will soon want to expand this trail. If our benefits match those in Pinellas County, we will be in for a real treat.

Take a look at the article, it is on-line. Also consider getting a subscription to "Land and People" - remember, it’s free. And of course, consider supporting the Trust for Public Land as they are one of the premier organizations involved in preserving the best of America.

The Trust for Public Land is a national, nonprofit, land conservation organization that conserves land for people to enjoy as parks, community gardens, historic sites, rural lands, and other natural places, ensuring livable communities for generations to come.

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