The Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) improves safety, economic prosperity, and community vitality by cooperating with local governments to enhance multimodal transportation options. Designating bicycle and pedestrian priority areas (BPPAs) facilitates the planning of bicycle and pedestrian facilities in areas with a high potential for bicycling and walking throughout the state. This collaborative approach helps State and local transportation agencies overcome a wide range of impediments to bicycle and pedestrian travel, regardless of facility ownership.
The Annotated Code of Maryland allows for the creation of BPPAs, and states:
Bicycle and pedestrian priority area means a geographical area where the enhancement of bicycle and pedestrian traffic is a priority.
WHAT THE BPPA DESIGNATION MEANS
Once MDOT designates an area as a BPPA, drafting the Bicycle and Pedestrian Priority Area Plan (BPPAP) can begin. In partnership with the local governments, the Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA) leads the BPPAP development. MDOT SHA plans bicycle and pedestrian treatments that align State, local, and stakeholder goals to expand existing or planned bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure. If no State roads are within a BPPA, the local agency leads and funds BPPAP development.
BPPAP development includes:
Local agency's roles and responsibilities include:
PREVIOUSLY DESIGNATED BPPAs
HOW THE PROGRAM WORKS
Your local jurisdiction can apply annually to MDOT SHA for one or more areas to be designated BPPAs. MDOT SHA will coordinate the application review and evaluate resources available fto determine whether to designate the requested BPPA(s). The BPPA application process and screening criteria are below.
BPPAP development requires a partnership between applicants and local implementing agencies such as municipal or county level public works or transportation departments. If a non-implementing agency applies, a letter of support from municipal or county level public works or transportation departments is required.
Stakeholder involvement is important when developing a BPPAP. The BPPA applicant must seek stakeholder involvement. Responsibilities include soliciting participation from affected stakeholders and selecting participants for the BPPAP working group.
For each designated BPPA, MDOT SHA convenes a BPPAP working group including the appropriate SHA district office, applicant, local implementing agency (if different from the applicant), local planning agency (if different from the applicant), and stakeholder participants to draft a BPPAP to increase safety and access for bicycle and pedestrian traffic.
The BPPA designation process includes the following steps:
APPLICATION SCREENING: MDOT will designate up to two BPPA(s) in areas with high potential for bicycling and walking. Selection criteria include:
Submit the BPPA Designation Application to MDOT SHA between March 5th and close of business May 5th. State BPPA designation will be made no later than close of business August 6th. Support designation of your BPPA with the following: (Supplemental information and examples can be found under the section Additional Resources.)
If you have any questions, please contact:
Ms. Samantha Biddle, AICP
Chief, Regional and Intermodal Planning Division
Maryland State Highway Administration
Regional and Intermodal Planning Division
707 N. Calvert Street
Baltimore, MD 21202
707 North Calvert Street
Baltimore, Maryland 21202-3601
Main Business Line – 410-545-0300
Safety Campaigns – 1-800-323-6742
For emergencies, call MDOT SHA's Statewide Operations Center at 410-582-5650.
Frequently Asked Questions
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