Why The First and Final Mile Matters
The first and final miles of a transit-oriented commute can prove difficult, especially in suburban communities that were originally designed for cars. Connecting to a transit station, or to a final destination can prove difficult (and even unsafe) when there are limited connections or walk distances are too far. The US 36 corridor is one of these suburban communities, and our First and Final Mile Study addresses how we, as a region, plan to address the barriers to riding transit.
The First and Final Mile Study focuses on the ease-of-use and travel-safety concerns related to the first and final miles of a commute, and provides solutions on how to make the corridor’s travel options safe, accessible and attractive. The study’s main objective was to identify solutions to better connect transit riders to the six US 36 RTD stations and surrounding activity centers. The solutions identified include transportation demand management tactics, such as providing electric bikes, shuttle circulators, station cars, scooters or golf carts, and bicycles at each station. By addressing the First and Final Mile issue, our study and resulting efforts are connecting commuters, residents, and visitors to their destinations safely, efficiently, and SOV free.
Each of the six US 36 RTD stations were individually assessed, as were each municipality’s corridor community plan. This ensured that recommendations were reflective of existing infrastructure plans and that the recommendations would be a good fit for the future of each community.
Ten Corridor-Wide Recommendations:
- Bike-n-Ride shelters. Watch this video to learn more about the first bike shelter in our corridor, located at Table Mesa Station.
- Branded wayfinding signs for all communities along the US 36 corridor.
- EcoPasses for individuals and businesses within close proximity to one of the six US 36 RTD stations.
- Private carshare and taxi services at each US 36 RTD stations.
- B-cycle membership (valid in Denver and Boulder)
- Transit-supportive land use policies.
- First and Final Mile mobile app, providing cycling, transit, walking, and taxi information to help riders reach their final destination.
- Real-time US 36 bus tracker.
- Bikeshare services at each station, including B-cycle, stationless bikeshare and or bike libraries.
- Secure scooter parking.
We are Making Progress!
In 2016, Bike-n-Ride shelter construction and operations will be implemented at the McCaslin, Broomfield and Sheridan stations. Installing Bike-n-Ride shelters at each of the six RTD US 36 Park-n-Rides is the #1 corridor-wide strategy from the study. Bike shelters solve a problem many commuters wrestle with—lack of ample and secure bike parking. Each bike shelter will have space for approximately 24 bikes. In the event that the on-board bike capacity is full, commuters don’t need to wait for the next bus.
We are currently working on the Northwest Corridor Wayfinding Design and Implementation Plan that, once complete, will help cyclists and RTD riders navigate between the US 36 RTD station areas and the US 36 Bikeway.
In 2014, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded a $4.5 million grant to support planning and implementation activities throughout the Denver metro region. Notably, the grant provides technical assistance funding to further four corridor recommendations from the US 36 First and Final Mile Study:
- Secure bike parking
- Branded wayfinding
- Connections to the Flatiron Flyer stations
- Bikeshare at areas along US 36
Addressing the first and final mile is an ongoing issue that Commuting Solutions is leading the way to advocate and secure funding for, to ensure that US 36 employees, residents and visitors have access to a safe and connected transit system.