The Facilities Subcommittee of the Tucson Pima County Bicycle Advisory Committee passed a motion on Thursday asking the TPCBAC for further discussion, clarification and amendments to the motion that passed unanimously in March.
The subcommittee had various concerns about the original motion.
Committee member Norm Land made the original motion that was passed by the full committee giving extra weight to bike boulevards. But he was concerned about the motion’s legality because he thought the Regional Transportation Authority’s plan did not allow things like bike boulevards to be added.
“I’m the one that made the motion to make boulevards equal status to on-list [projects] and quite frankly I think that is illegal and I’d like to retract that,” Land said. “As the person who made the motion, I have a right to do that. I would like to bring that up to the BAC. That was a big mistake on my part.”
The RTA’s representative Gabe Thum clarified that broad categories in the plan cannot be changed, but specific projects — like bike boulevards — can be added.
Committee member Eric Post also expressed concern that funding bike boulevards would prevent the projects that were originally voted on by voters from getting funded.
“The primary issue that I see is if the funding for the boulevards removes any of the on-list items, that is the problem,” Post said.
Thum said there is flexibility in projects that get funded. They give priority to the projects that were voted on, but the RTA administrators recognize that priorities change and if projects like bike boulevards were not a priority when the RTA passed they can be funded if it is a priority now.
“The RTA management’s contention is that the bike lanes shown on the map are illustrative,” Thum said. “We need to make sure that everyone knows that we do have some flexibility at the working group and board level.”
Bill Adamson, a voting member of the RTA’s bike and pedestrian working group, said there wasn’t enough money to complete all of the projects that were voted on.
In no way is there enough funding in the RTA to deliver all those projects that are on the list,” Adamson said. “I don’t care how much cost cutting we are doing. We estimated way low with that list and it is never going to be completely delivered with the amount of money we have been given.”
“The list is not sacred. It is not sacrosanct,” Thum said.
Land said he wanted the BAC to amend the motion that allowed bike boulevards to be considered equal to the original projects in their June meeting.