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Town of Culpeper considers a sharing plan for bike lanes

Culpeper Times Staff Writer

At the August meeting of the Culpeper Town Council, a proposal to remove bike lanes on East Street and Blue Ridge Avenue failed with a 4-4 vote, leaving the lanes in place. However, the council indicated at that time that it might be willing to reconsider the proposal by Councilman Ben Phillips at a later date
Phillips' rationale was that the lanes are underutilized and create a safety hazard, Other councilmen countered that bike lanes create a traffic calming effect and provide better safety for riders.

At its regular meeting Oct. 9, the full council may consider an alternative proposal – “sharrows,” – arrow markings reminding automobile users to share the road with bicyclists. These markings are currently used in Charlottesville and Harrisonburg, as well as in other locales where street width does not allow for dedicated bike lanes.

Town staff estimates that the cost to remove the bike lanes and replace them with “sharrows” would be $15,000.

In another proposal, town staff is requesting that council implement a “Workplace Violence and Threats” policy to show the town's commitment to maintaining a safe workplace and zero-tolerance for workplace violence and threats. A draft version of the policy may be discussed by the council and adopted at its meeting.

The town may also move forward on the hiring of a zoning inspector. The position is in the current budget and Mayor Chip Coleman has requested that the council discuss it.

According to the proposed job description, the zoning inspector would “perform intermediate technical work inspecting for zoning ordinance compliance, review construction plans” and do other related work as required. The town does not currently have a zoning inspector.

The Culpeper Ruritan Club is requesting closing streets and the use of the town's tent and stage for Culpeper Day activities on May 4, 2013.

The above items are only tentative topics of discussion as Town Council agendas are not finalized until the Monday before meetings. Final agendas are available at meetings and online at: culpeperva.gov.
Council meetings begin at 7 p.m. in the Board of Supervisors meeting room, 306 N. Main St.

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