This is an important project for the BikeWalkLee network, so mark your calendars and spread the word.
The County's online Town Hall MindMixer tool is an outstanding way to get public input and have a community dialogue on the Estero Blvd. Improvement Project. To date, 89 people have participated in the conversation and there are lots of good ideas being shared. If you haven't participated in the online conversation, check out what others are saying and join in!:
Last June, Mayor Kiker invited BikeWalkLee to analyze the Town's North Estero Blvd. improvement project to determine if the incorporated bike/ped/transit facilities can serve as a model for the larger county Estero Blvd. improvement project, and what improvements or changes may be needed. On June 8th, a team from BikeWalkLee conducted a site visit and wrote a comprehensive report with recommendations, that was transmitted to both the Fort Myers Mayor and Vice-Mayor, and to LeeDOT.
Click here for the BikeWalkLee June 2012 report. Below are some highlights of BikeWalkLee's suggestions:
- The North Estero Blvd. project is truly a model complete street, and the town and county should strive to design the larger 6-mile Estero Blvd. improvement project similar to this model.
- A roundabout at the entrance to Fort Myers Beach, at the base of Matanzas Bridge would greatly improve safety for all road users, esp. pedestrians, slow down traffic, and improve traffic flow, as well as providing a signature "gateway" to the town.
- Bike lanes should be provided (both sides of road) on Estero Blvd.
- There should be dedicated left turn lanes vs. continuous left (suicide lanes)
- The speed limit "downtown" should be lowered to 25 mph
- Improved pedestrian crossings should be installed and made highly visible from a maximum distance
- Enhanced trolley access (which is important), should not come at the expense of safety and facilities for those cycling onto the island. The solution must be truly multi-modal.
- Although not part of the current scope of the Estero Blvd. improvement project, major improvements are needed on San Carlos Blvd. from Summerlin up to the Matanzas Pass Bridge to make them safer for all road users, and our report includes a series of suggestions (see p. 4)
- Our report also suggests some inexpensive things that can be done now to improve the road for both pedestrians and cyclists, as we wait for this improvement project to be completed (p. 5-6)