Dear Ming Gao, Robin Rhinesmith and Lori Snively,
My name is Alan Snel, director of SWFBUD (South West Florida Bicycle United Dealers) -- a group of 12 Tampa Bay area bike shops that represents thousands of bicyclists in the Tampa Bay area.
I am writing on behalf of our 12 bike shops and our thousands of bicycling customers to voice our support for the proposed Courtney Campbell Causeway trail project.
This is a badly-needed trail project that is necessary for bicycle safety, transportation, commuting, recreation, safe access, tourism and economic development reasons.
Bicycle safety -- the current high bridge on the causeway has a mere four feet for a shoulder, placing a bicyclist on the shoulder in danger of being struck and potentially killed. Too many bicyclists are being killed on local streets and roadsin Tampa Bay.
Transportation and Commuting -- Bicyclists would use the causeway to reach jobs and other destinations in Tampa and Clearwater. It would help remove motorized vehicles off the road and improve traffic flow.
Recreational and Access --The former Friendship Trailbridge drew 600,000 annual users, but that bike-ped bridge between Tampa and St. Petersburg is closed and a new bridge for bicyclists and pedestrians is needed to cross The Bay. This trail would provide safe access to recreational points along the causeway.
Tourism and Economic Development -- Visitors to Tampa Bay and Florida express interest in locating a safe place for bicycling and the causeway trail would create economic opportunities and spending.
Please move forward with this very vital trail project.
Director of SWFBUD