The Impacts of East Central Wisconsin’s Bike and Pedestrian Facilities on the Regional Economy

Bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure networks provide valuable economic, environmental, and public health benefits to the communities they serve. However, these impacts are often understated or overlooked when considering investment of these networks within communities. East Central Wisconsin Regional Planning Commission (ECWRPC), based out of Menasha, WI, serves as the Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) for the Appleton (Fox Cities) and Oshkosh MPOs and staffs the Fond du Lac MPO. As part of its transportation program, ECWRPC created The Appleton (Fox Cities) Transportation Management Area (TMA) and Oshkosh Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan in 2014, and it was updated in 2021. The plan identifies gaps in the bicycle and pedestrian network in the region and provides recommendations to create a comprehensive network. The purpose of this study was to quantify the potential range of benefits associated with building the recommended facilities within the Appleton (Fox Cities) TMA, Oshkosh MPO, and the Fond du Lac MPO. This report aims to help stakeholders understand the estimated value created by completing the network, including opportunities arising for the community, workers, and local businesses.

Completion of the bicycle and pedestrian network will increase economic activity and jobs associated with construction of new segments across the region, will ultimately increase property values for residents located close to completed network, and will provide environmental service benefits in the form of flood mitigation, carbon sequestration, and other avoided costs due to the networks’ presence and their surrounding tree cover. In addition to the benefits afforded to the region by the networks’ presence, the usage of bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure by residents and visitors will support healthy lifestyles by expanding walking, biking, and other active transportation options, while also improving connectivity in the region, generating greater economic activity for local businesses located near the network.

East Central WI Bike Trails Cover

Key Technical Applications

  • Economic Impact Analysis

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