Hilton Head Accomplishments in 2012
It has been over a year since Hilton Head became our highest-ranking Bicycle Friendly Community at the silver level. The island has not been content to rest on its laurels, however, and has kept very busy during the past year. They have continued to improve their 5 E’s (engineering, education, enforcement, encouragement and evaluation and planning). The following is a list of the community’s accomplishments compiled by our local board member, Frank Babel.
- New town pathways – 1.24 miles
- Pathways rehabilitated – 54,494 square feet
- New crosswalks – 9
- Refurbished Existing Crosswalks – 3
- New pedestrian signals – 8
- Pedestrian/bike signage improvements – 15 (approximate)
- Additional bike parking facilities at numerous commercial and recreational sites including Shelter Cove and Honey Horn parks.
- Technical assistance to several HHI plantations on bicycling safety and infrastructure issues
- Two new LCI’s
- Development and distribution of 5,000 bike safety flyers w/ pathways maps
- The Sandbox bike safety training and rodeo for 50 children in October 2011 and 2012
- Numerous HHI Fire & Rescue bike operation, safety training and education activities
- Articles and op-ed pieces in The Island Packet, HHI Monthly, CH2 and other local media to
- raise awareness of bike safety and the importance of biking on Hilton Head Island.
- Formation of HHI Bicycling Advisory Committee, HHI BAC Steering Committee and establishment of six project areas with six task forces.
- RBS Heritage and Concours D’Elegance have become bicycle friendly events
- Creation of new HHI/Bluffton Chamber bicycling micro web site.
- New Beaufort County bike routes map for experienced cyclists by HHI/Bluffton Chamber of Commerce
- New 50-bike rack encourages cyclists to bike to nearly weekly community events in Shelter Cove Park
- Formation of an HHI Biking Ambassador corps.
- Continued growth of local bike clubs, bike rental companies and recreational cycling tourists
- Numerous articles and appearances in and on the media promoting cycling
- Ride of Silence, Town Resolutions, and events to celebrate National Bike Month in 2011 and 2012
- Starting up Safe Routs to School program at HHI Middle School and Hilton Head Preparatory
- Public ribbon cutting ceremony commemorating new Wm. Hilton Parkway pathway
- Pedal 4 Kids community biking event for 350 cyclists in 2011 and 2012 with bike safety instructions
- Collaboration with Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office to educate deputies on SC bike laws
- Two BCSO deputies trained in bike safety and enforcement
- Volunteer Biking Ambassadors provide “nice” enforcement suggestions to biking tourists.
- BCSO coaching for organized active cyclists for their scheduled rides
Evaluation and Planning
- Continued town support of pathways capital investments and maintenance
- Comprehensive HHI five-year pathways capital plan with projected $11M capital budgeted for
- new pathways in 2013-2017 period.
- Bike/car crashes measured and down approx. 50% at town’s most dangerous biking intersections due to evaluation of BCSO incident report and subsequent infrastructure improvements.
Hilton Head is a reminder that attaining BFC status isn’t an endgame. It’s a challenge to improve, and to continue improving. With the introduction of the diamond level, the League has shown they intend to keep moving the finish line to encourage us to keep pushing forward and becoming better and better for bicycling. We are pleased to see that Hilton Head is stepping up to that challenge already.