Montgomery County Bicycle Planning Guidance

Montgomery County, Maryland received a grant through the Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments' (MWCOG) Transportation/Land Use Connections program to develop bicycle classification guidance for the County. KAI led a process with the Montgomery County Planning Department and its key stakeholders to advance bicycle planning to help build an attractive network for a broader portion of the County's population.

The Montgomery County Bicycle Planning Guidance (Attachment A) provides two tools for evaluating the needs of different bicycling groups. The first is a "pre-screening" tool that identifies those bicycle facilities that are most appropriate under different combinations of traffic speed and traffic volume. Separate pre-screening tools were created for the "Interested but Concerned" and "Enthused and Confident" cyclist groups.

A second tool is the Level of Traffic Stress (LTS) methodology that assigns road segments and intersection crossings a level of traffic stress from 4 (highest) to 1 (lowest). These levels correspond to the Four Types of Transportation Cyclists typology:

• Level of Traffic Stress 4: Strong & Fearless

• Level of Traffic Stress 3: Enthused & Confident

• Level of Traffic Stress 2: Interested but Concerned

• Level of Traffic Stress 1: Appropriate for most children

The LTS tool was tested in Downtown Bethesda and identifies a number of deficiencies in the bicycling network for the "Interested but Concerned" population. The Bicycle Planning Guidance was developed with input from the Montgomery County Department of Transportation. It was also reviewed with a focus group of bicyclists in Montgomery County, representing a good distribution of geographic areas, tolerance for traffic stress, and gender.