CYCLING: Rochester: an emerging world-class cycling spot
One way to make the region more bicycle-friendly is for municipalities to make sure they connect existing trails and trail segments. Over the past decade or so there has been progress, DeSarra says.The Erie Canal trail and the Genesee Valley Greenway are examples; they even connect to each other. But there's still work to be done on those trails, such as making more connections or offering better markings.
The Greenway, combined with the Genesee Riverway, provides a straight shot from RIT to downtown, says Jon Schull, an RIT professor who's involved in bicycling-related projects at the school. The Greenway and Riverway are actually the most direct way to get from RIT to downtown. And the University or Rochester is along the way.
Students could live downtown "without having to worry about cars and parking and all of that," Schull says. "So I see that as a real transportation innovation that could make a difference."
The Greenway and the Erie Canal trail are not complete or connected in certain parts, mostly in lesser-populated areas. If they were, those paths could be useful to commuters, Dollard says. They could act as a bicycle highway from outlying areas into the city.
On a broader scale, there's the potential to connect trails from Lake Ontario and the City of Rochester to Williamsport, Pennsylvania, via 230 miles of trails, including the Genesee Riverway Trail and the Genesee Valley Greenway. The only hurdle is a few short gaps and one 20-mile gap that need to be connected, Schull says.
And that doesn't even touch on the cycling opportunities that are available in the Finger Lakes region, east of the Greenway. Bike-based scenic tours and wine country tours are already popular.(read the rest)