The city of Mountain View, California approved an $18.6 million capital budget for fiscal 2014 that includes over $4 million in projects to improve pedestrian and bicycle mobility during the city council meeting on June 18, 2013.
This Silicon Valley city of 75,000 is home to several well-known high tech businesses such as Google, Intuit, Symantec, the Mozilla Foundation and Eye-Fi. The city council dramatic increase in bicycle and pedestrian spending reflects one of the city’s three goals for the fiscal year, which is to improve bicycle and pedestrian mobility. During the budget process, the city received several comments from the public indicating a desire to create an environment that makes walking and bicycling, as well as other alternative forms of transportation, easier for its community members. The US Census 2011 American Community Survey shows 6.2% of Mountain View residents commuted by bicycle, nearly matching the 6.3% who bike to work in Portland, OR. Another 6.5% use public transportation.
The city allocated 22% of its capital budget to make walking and bicycling safer and more prevalent. Projects include an update of the city bicycle transportation plan, narrowing a portion of Castro Street, implementation of and local funding for a Safe Routes to School Program, trail and other bike facility improvements throughout Mountain View, and new bike racks downtown. Google, which is headquartered within Mountain View, donated $435,000 dollars specifically for bicycle projects in addition to the millions the Internet search company pays in property taxes and leases on city-owned property.
Read more at the Mountain View Voice: Bike-pedestrian upgrades coming to a street near you / Google gives city’s bike and pedestrian network $435,000 boost.