Big news from the ’burbs: bike lane coming to Towson!

A new roadside attraction may join the shopping malls and auto dealerships of Greater Towson – a bike lane.

A route for cyclists circumnavigating the Baltimore County seat was unveiled yesterday by the county Department of Public Works.

The loop would pass Towson University on Towsontown Blvd and extend north up Bosley Ave.

At Fairmount Ave., it would swing east and continue past Towsontown Center Mall to Towson Place Shopping Center. It would then double back via Hillen Road to Towson University.

Sharing the Road

Grandly dubbed the “Bike Beltway,” the roughly five-mile loop would consist of painted lanes and shared-lane markings (“sharrows”) on the existing roads.

Bike advocates argue that Towson needs to offer transportation options for people in the district. But with drivers on busy Goucher Blvd. and elsewhere required to give up space to pedalers, the plan could prove controversial, as similar plans have in Baltimore.

The proposed bike route around car-centric Towson around using existing roads. (Baltimore County Department of Public Works)

The proposed bike route around car-centric Towson. (Baltimore County Department of Public Works)

“I look forward to hearing from residents about ways we can thoughtfully accommodate bicyclists along with motorists,” Councilman David Marks, who represents Towson, said yesterday.

Residents will get a chance to react to the plan at a public meeting scheduled at 7 p.m. December 17 in Room 118 of the Historic Courthouse, 400 Washington Ave.

The bike route was underwritten by a $100,000 grant from the Maryland Bikeways Program and a $20,000 county match.

Plans for additional lanes fanning from Towson to Cromwell Valley Park, the Hampton National Historic Site, Shops of Kenilworth, Greater Baltimore Medical Center and Dumbarton Middle School are on hold pending funding and additional engineering studies.

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  • Jed Weeks

    I’m skeptical of the sharrows portion of this plan, as they’re quite ineffective on major roads.

  • H S

    I can’t think of a more appropriate place for such a thing, since Towson is the mecca of twittery that plagues the county. During rush hours, several segments of the proposed bike route are congestive nightmares, so the last thing that is needed is the addition of spandex clad impediments. When TU is in session, I know many people that avoided Towson like the plague–this sounds like a great reason to avoid it all year long.

    A far better use of the grant and tax money would be to extend the running track at Towson High School. Then, the bicyclists could safely ride around in circles without needlessly blocking the travel of the majority. Of course, the cyclists will object to this plan vehemently, as it prevents them from being seen, which is actually the goal of the majority of this minority. Most communities have simply ignore twits who don’t possess enough sense to realize that looking cool is not worth risking your life over.

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