Georgia: Athens-Clarke County Commissioners Have Second Thoughts About Barnett Shoals Bike Lanes—and Bike Lanes in General

Showing some buyer’s remorse about the bicycle/pedestrian plan they adopted last month, a majority of Athens-Clarke County commissioners reconsidered last week and voted to “accept” but not “adopt” the Athens in Motion plan for future bikeways and sidewalks.

What’s the difference? Commissioner Jerry NeSmith (who was absent for the original vote) and other commissioners had some doubts about the plan’s project priorities and how they were arrived at, and didn’t want to be committed to a plan they had no hand in fashioning.

The plan was written, following extensive public input, by a committee of 12 citizens supported by county-paid consultants and county staffers. It details some 200 bike and sidewalk projects throughout the county that might be built in coming decades as funding is available. (The transportation sales tax passed by voters in 2017 includes $17 million in initial funds.)