People to Parks survey shows need for more bike and pedestrian routes

CHARLESTON COUNTY, SC (WCSC) - The Charleston County Parks and Recreation Commission is asking for your input on bike and pedestrian improvements in the County.

The "People to Parks" plan, which started three years ago, is now in its final phase.

Right now the survey shows that 74% of people don't feel safe walking or riding their bicycles in Charleston County.

"People really do want to be able to ride their bike or walk safely to their county and municipal parks," Matt Moldenhauer, the Land Resource Manager for Charleston County Parks, said.

At this point the commission has collected more than 2,500 responses, and they're asking for more.

"What we're waiting for is their own opinion about where routes need to go," Moldenhauer said. "That's why we ask the question, where do you ride your bike or walk, or where would you like to ride your bike or walk?"

You're able to create those paths yourself by using a wiki-map at the end of the survey.

Multiple routes have already been created by others who have taken the survey.

Among them include a route across the Northbridge from West Ashley to North Charleston.

"That's a bridge that currently doesn't have any pedestrian or bike access," Moldenhauer said.

Others include Rifle Range Road in Mt. Pleasant.

"People have both drawn on the online map, as well as written down on the survey, that Rifle Range Road is in need of improvement," Moldenhauer added.

Other popular routes identified is the need for a safe bike-pedestrian connection between the West Ashley Greenway and downtown via the Ashley River Bridge.

The survey also shows that 91% of people would ride their bikes if drivers were more cautious, and it was safe to share the road.

The commission does not deal with transportation, but wants to focus on how to get the public to its parks at ease and safely.

The goal is to have a plan prepared by the end of September and present it to possibly the County Council.

As for funding, once the plan is presented it would be up to the implementers to decide the best plan to move forward.

The Parks Department is asking for more people to take the survey.

Moldenhauer said the survey will be open through the weekend.

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