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Motorists, cyclists share the road as Spa City experiment begins

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Saratoga Springs city officials are on a mission to make downtown, bicycle friendly.

"This has been in a long-time in the making,” said Carton.

Henry Street, a downtown street that runs parallel to Broadway, has always gone two ways.

In recent years, it's become heavy with foot traffic and new restaurants.

Now with this new pilot program, the section of Henry Street between Lake Avenue and Spring Street will become a one-waybut just for a short while.

For the next two weeks...motorists and cyclists will have to co-exist on Henry Street.

Tina Carton, City Administrator for Parks, Open Lands, Historic Preservation, and Sustainability, says "A lot of people in the community are extremely excited about this. They're excited about finally seeing something on the ground. They're excited about increasing the bike mobility of the city as well as just the walkability."

The program is an experiment to see whether two-way bicycle traffic can co-exist with one-way vehicle traffic and parking, and could serve as a model for other cities.

Ted Orosz, Member of the Saratoga Complete Streets, says "The idea of making what's now a two-way street into a one-way street with two-way bicycle accommodations is something that might have great applicability around Saratoga and all around the Capital District."

The experiment will serve as a test for a larger, city-wide trail initiative called the Greenbelt Trail.

It’s a 24-mile bike path that will connect all of Saratoga Springs' neighborhoods.

Ken Grey, member of the Saratoga Complete Streets, says, "We want to be able to connect Exit 15, High Rock Park, and we're trying to figure out how do we get ourselves throughout the core of the city."

"There are some concerns but that's why we're doing a pilot see how it works,” replied Carton.

The Henry Street Pilot Program is being paid for through grants.

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Once it's over, the city will conduct a public survey to see if modifications need to be made before it becomes permanent.

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