WJTV News Channel 12 - Proposed bike plan to connect counties in the east

Proposed bike plan to connect counties in the east

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NEW BERN, N.C. - A new proposed bike plan would connect five counties in an effort to encourage more people to ride bikes.

"We're looking at healthier lifestyles," said Robert Will, Community Developer at East Carolina Council of Government. "Looking at family activities, and that is why we looked at different levels, different geographies, in the plan."

The Croatan Regional Bike Plan would provide short and long bike paths in Onslow, Craven, Carteret, Pamlico and Jones counties.

But health isn't the only thing the plan would address. It also aims to make bike riding safer.

Between 1997 and 2007, each of the five counties the plan would cover experienced accidents involving people riding bikes.

Onslow County led the five counties with 220 accidents during the 10 year span, ranking the county 14th in the state. Behind Onslow was Carteret with 144 accidents, Craven with 114, Pamlico with 19, and Jones with 14 accidents.

"That was one of the pieces of data we looked at when we were developing the plan," Will said. "The number of crashes and where those crashes specifically were."

The proposed plan is being funded by the DOT, but counties are encouraged to help fund some parts of the project.

Avid cyclists say they hope the plan isn't only beneficial to bike riders, but also educational for everyone.

"The more signage and stuff you have, the more that you will see people be more aware of the fact that the bicycles are on the road and that they basically have a right to the road," said Bill Sadler, a cyclists who supports the plan.

To learn more about the proposed plan, you can visit their Facebook page.
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