7 open houses set in February on draft Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan

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SARASOTA COUNTY - Sarasota County will hold seven open-house-style meetings in February on the draft Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan. Attendees will have the opportunity to view the draft plan and maps identifying existing facilities and high-priority areas for improvements, and to ask questions and provide comments.

The 5-7 p.m. meetings will be held at the following dates and north county locations:

Wednesday, Feb. 6, Longwood Run Park, 6050 Longwood Run Blvd., Sarasota

Monday, Feb. 11, Sabal Palm Bank, 5101 Fruitville Road, Sarasota

Wednesday, Feb. 13, Robert L. Taylor Community Complex, 1845 34th St., Sarasota

Wednesday, Feb. 20, Bee Ridge Park, 4430 S. Lockwood Ridge Road

Thursday, Feb. 21, Twin Lakes Park, 6700 Clark Road, Sarasota

Tuesday, Feb. 26, Siesta Key Chapel, 4615 Gleason Ave., Siesta Key

Wednesday Feb. 27, Selby Library, 1331 1st St., Sarasota

Five open houses were held in south county in January.

The draft Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan identifies a vision, mission and purpose for a bicycle and pedestrian network and provides a framework to promote and encourage safe and efficient bicycle and pedestrian travel within Sarasota County. It recognizes key partnerships and ongoing efforts to increase the safety and education of bicyclists and pedestrians. It includes facility design types and graphics, points out existing bicycle and pedestrian facilities and recommended connections, and identifies opportunities and deficiencies in the network for improvements. The plan is an essential tool for the county to use when applying for grant funds from state, federal and nonprofit organizations.

In addition to the open houses, the county has extended through Feb. 28, 2013 the opportunity for public input and comments on the draft plan via the county's wiki site. A link to the wiki can be found online at the Sarasota County website, www.scgov.net, keyword Pedestrian.

After submitting a valid email address and agreeing to follow the civility code, users will be sent a password for this citizen feedback tool via email.

After the wiki is closed and the open houses are held, county staff will prepare a summary report for the commission on the citizen feedback and present the draft plan to the Sarasota County Commission in spring 2013.

For additional information, contact the Sarasota County Call Center at 941-861-5000 or email bikepedplan@scgov.net.