Tim Tietjens, the planning and development director for Galveston and an avid cyclist, pedals south in the 19th Street bike lane. He is working with the Intermodal Transportation Committee to improve the city's biking plan. (Jennifer Reynolds/The Galveston County Daily News via AP)

Galveston man aims to make city more bike friendly

June 1, 2017

The Galveston County Daily News

GALVESTON — Tim Tietjens, planning and development director for Galveston, has been a long-distance biker for several years. Now, he’s using his love of the sport to form a better bike plan for the island.

Galveston’s streets are already in an “X/Y grid,” which is ideal for biking, Tietjens said. What the city is lacking is a comprehensive bike plan to make it safer for people to get around.

The city is now working on a bicycle network, with painted bike lanes going north-to-south across the island, and shared bike lanes going east-to-west. Many of the changes will be implemented as streets undergo major construction. The plan is expected to be complete in several years.

Galveston’s Intermodal Transportation Committee supports many of the planned changes.

“What we’ve seen is real enthusiasm from the city, and Tim is probably the single most enthusiastic,” said committee member Jayson Levy.

Tietjens said he has found the benefits of biking span wider than just exercise.

“Some just exercise, while others get out and try to make an outdoor adventure out of it,” he said. “When you do that, you really open up the realm of what a city has to offer.”

Tietjens said he hopes the city can develop a grid good enough for “biking tourism” to draw people to the island.

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