December 2015: Charleston City Council’s Traffic and Transportation Committee holds a hearing on the “engineering feasibility study” to reopen the James Island Connector.
Well done, supporters! Council Chambers was full tonight, and the only people who spoke were in support of getting bikes back on the Connector! Nineteen speakers stood up and made excellent points, and the council members clearly heard us. At the time of the meeting, we had 977 petition signatures (the petition is still open, by the way).
The council members are a bit stuck on some issues, including what kind of liability the City of Charleston faces (we assert there is none), what SCDOT will allow as far as retrofits (we believe we can work with SCDOT to get the right retrofits), and whether James Island folks will oppose our suggestion of making the speed limit 35 mph (hmmm).
Next steps: the city’s traffic & transportation staff will meet with SCDOT to discuss the public’s comments, and will report back to the traffic & transportation committee. We expect to see this issue come back to the traffic & transportation committee in February or March 2016.
In the meantime, here’s what we ask of you:
–reach out to Councilmembers Moody, Wilson, Wagner, and Seekings, as well as Mayor Tecklenburg, and thank them for working to get bikes back on the Connector in a cost-efficient and safe manner. They all serve on the traffic & transportation committee. Here are their emails: [email protected];[email protected];[email protected];[email protected];[email protected]
–talk to your friends and neighbors on James Island. Help them understand that it is safer for everyone, whether on bikes or in cars, to have an enforced speed limit on the JIC of 35 mph. If they agree, make sure they’ve signed our petition. See if they might be willing to sign on and help us get other James Islanders on board! (feel free to reach out to Katie [email protected] on any of this)
Most importantly, stay tuned to this page for updates. Your help has been invaluable so far, and we will continue to rely on you to get bikes legally back on the JIC! Thank you.