November 5, 2002

Marin County Bicycle Freeway

Category: Cycling , Trails , Urban Planning

Marin County: Rails to Trails is a concept wherein abandoned railroad tracks are dug up and turned into recreational trails, most often used by cyclists. They are incredibly popular not only for recreation but, in many areas as a way to commute. Generally, they are completely separated from automobile traffic, and use tunnels and overpasses that once served trains.

Marin County (north of San Francisco) is on the cusp of of establishing two giant trails, one running the full length of the county from North to South, and the other from east to west. This so called "Bicycle Freeway" won't be the longest trail ever established, as many in the Midwest go for 100s of miles, but it may become one of the most useful, enabling commuters to travel from Sonoma all the way to Sausalito on flat ground with no traffic interruptions. The path will pass both ferry terminals allowing for easy access to San Francisco as well.

It's by no means a done deal, as there are a number of issues to be tackled, most notably the required opening of several long abandoned tunnels, and the controversial "larkspur trestle", but the speed and effectiveness of Marin County and the MC Bicycle Coalition has been phenomenal in getting this plan implemented and it shouldn't be more than a few years before it's fully open.

Links: [rails to trails][MCBC][The Plan in PDF]

Posted by Nick at November 5, 2002 5:57 PM