University Facilities

Campus Bikeways - Background

Clemson University’s Existing Plans

Clemson University’s previous master planning efforts have broadly supported the development of bikeways within the campus. Related to transportation, the University’s previous planning efforts have focused on circulation and transportation from a vehicular and pedestrian perspective.

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  • Introduction +

    Traffic Circulation Map. Campus Master Plan. Clemson University 2002. Since the 1980’s, the University has planned for basic bikeway facility improvements on campus. The Bicycle System Design Guidelines for Clemson University were developed as part of the 1982 Clemson University Comprehensive Master Plan. The guidelines describe procedures and standards for unifying the bike routes, paths, lanes, lighting, racks, parking areas and storage areas on campus. The proposed bicycle system map found in the 1982 Master Plan lead to bikeway planning efforts in the 1990’s. Stemming from the Design Guidelines and the Areawide Transportation Study that was prepared for the City of Clemson and Clemson University in 1988, a bikeway network was proposed for parts of downtown Clemson and Clemson University’s campus. In 1990, graduate students from the University prepared the Clemson Bikeway preliminary bicycle plan for the City of Clemson’s Planning Commission. The bikeway routes proposed were similar to those suggested in the 1988 plan. The plan took an in-depth approach to bicycle planning by identifying the need for a defined bikeway system as well as explaining bikeway classifications, the need for construction and maintenance, safety, budget guidelines and recommended improvements.

    The Clemson University 1992 Long Range Master Plan laid out a bikeway network of along the major streets of campus: Perimeter Road, Cherry Road, Williamson Drive, Centennial Boulevard, Old Greenville Highway and parts of McMillan Road. In the mid-1990’s, based on plan recommendations, a bike lane was installed along Perimeter Road from Old Greenville Highway to Cherry Road. A shared roadway was officially designated on Old Greenville Highway from Cherry Road to Perimeter Road by the installation of one “share the road” sign. The University won a Transportation Enhancement grant that provided funds for construction of the bikeways.

    The 2002 Campus Master Plan was the last planning document that identified improvements to the bikeway network on campus. Other University Plans (Center of Centers Master Plan 2003, High Ground Precinct Master Plan 2008) that have been written since have mentioned the existence of bicycles on campus by either stating that students use them or the need for additional bike racks.

  • Local Community Plans +

    University and local community boundaries Many of the local communities surrounding Clemson University have plans that support the development of bikeways. The Town of Pendleton and the cities of Clemson, Easley, Anderson and Greenville have plans that support the development of bikeways. The Clemson Bikeway Plan completed in 1990 was the first bicycle plan for the area. In 1997, the City of Clemson completed a Clemson Bikeways plan that outlined a bikeway system that included routes, bike lane classes, signage, budget and other bike facilities. Most of the plan’s recommendations have been achieved, providing some basic improvements to bicycle infrastructure and safety. The City of Clemson Comprehensive Plan 2014 supports improvements to the existing bikeways system within the city limits.

    In the early 2010’s, the cities of Greenville and Easley completed bike plans. Though these cities are outside of the typical planning area of the University, connections could potentially be made with the CUICAR facility in Greenville to establish a larger, regional bikeway system.

  • Clemson Experimental Forest History +

    Clemson Experimental Forest Dating back to the Roosevelt Administration’s New Deal Program of the 1930’s, the Clemson Experimental Forest was developed “to improve the state of the impoverished people and degraded lands surrounding Clemson College.” Nearby worn-out farmland and low-grade timber areas were cleared and planted with pine and hardwood seedlings, setting the stage for the enjoyment and management of the natural resources near the University. Lake Issaqueena was established and stocked with fish. Roads, bridges, trails and other recreational facilities were developed in the Forest. In 1939, Clemson entered into a lease agreement with the federal government to take over the administrative responsibilities of the forest land and project. In 1954, the Forest was deeded to Clemson College.

    The 1950’s brought change to the Forest. Lake Hartwell was developed and flooded portions of the property. The primary purpose became natural resource education and research. Forest management continued to play a minor role until 1947. In the 1960’s, recreational horseback riding became more common as the equestrian program in animal science grew. By 1976, as the College came to be a leader in forest management research, college officials incorporated forest management activities into the mission of the Forest.

    Recreation use increased as mountain bikers began to explore the forest in the early 1980’s. Interest in the sport continued to climb, especially after the Atlanta 1996 Summer Olympics, when Mountain Biking became an official Olympic sport. Mountain bikers across the Southeast are drawn to the Forest due to its unique terrain, proximity to major urban areas (Greenville, Atlanta, Charlotte) and lack of user or park fees.

    Hunting and fishing have also been permitted in the Forest, and, since 1980, portions of the forest have been included in the South Carolina Wildlife Management Areas program. Licensed fishing is allowed in areas that are not under university research. Hunting by rifle, shotgun and archery is permitted with a state hunting license and WMA permit in designated areas, during certain times of year and within game limits. Signs with information about hunting data, game and allowable ammunitions are posted in the Forest.

    With the increase in use of the Forest, the 2000 Management Plan recognized the need to manage recreational resources to reduce the associated liability. The decision acknowledged the Forest as a place to experiment with trail design, maintenance technologies and strategies, dividing Forest use by trail users and use intensities, including use as an outdoor classroom. Using a collaborative adaptive management process, various users, managers and scientists have been invited to work together to devise the best plan for the Forest trails and resources. The trail system and management plan that developed set the stage for the use and management of the Forest for over the next ten years.

    Use of the Forest has increased over time. Timber production has been a long-standing, major activity in the Forest, and for many years has been main revenue generator. Academic and recreational users from the Clemson area and beyond are drawn to the Forest to conduct research and enjoy the natural resources and trails. Community groups have played a role in developing the trail system since the 1930’s. Students are drawn to use the forest for academic projects and recreation. The Forest continues to be managed today as it began, as a resource for the Clemson community to enjoy and preserve for future generations.

  • Institutional Support +

    Institutional Support Since 2000, the University has invested in and promoted sustainable, environmental plans, programs and initiatives on campus. In 2005, a Sustainable Building Policy was developed to demonstrate the University’s commitment to environmental, economic and social stewardship. In 2009, The President’s Commission on Sustainability was formed to creatively address sustainability by integrating education, research and public service. The Solid Green campaign is Clemson’s environmental sustainability campaign that encourages conservation and recycling. The President’s 2010 – 2011 Report summarized new future program goals and developments, including investments in transportation technology, greener energy and sustainability. The 2020 Road Map, a ten year plan, has pushed the University to strive to achieve significant goals that focus on addressing the major challenges of health, energy, transportation issues and create a sustainable environment. In 2012, a car-sharing program began that includes low emission and electronic automobiles and the ride-sharing program called Zimride.

  • Bicycle Count +

    In late fall of 2011, a bicycle count was conducted at several intersections within the University boundaries. Volunteers counted a total of 218 cyclists on the first Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday morning in November 2011. Volunteers were trained using information from the National Bicycle and Pedestrian Document program, and then recorded information in the field for two hour increments at several locations on campus roads. Most of the count stations were on the perimeter of campus, providing information on the number of cyclists riding in and out of campus.  The highest counts were recorded the intersection of Old Greenville Highway and College Avenue. See the map below for more detailed information.

    Campus Bicycle Count

  • Crashes +

    Data for bike crashes was collected from the Clemson University Police Department and SC DOT from 2001 – 2011. There were 11 crashes total. The intersections of Press Road and Perimeter Road and Hwy 93 and the off/on road ramps of Hwy 76 each had two reported crashes. It should be noted that University Police cover a majority of calls on campus roads. Additionally, University Police TR 310 crash reports do not provide a way to classify and track bicycle-related crashes. Information related to an event involving a bicycle is only recorded in the general comments section of the report, and no further tracking is done. See the map below for more detailed information.

    Campus Bike Crash Locations

  • Bicycle Parking +

    In the first half of 2012, a bicycle rack survey was completed by student volunteers used a PinPoint GPS device. Information on individual bike rack location, the number of bikes at each rack, type, potential capacity and various other rack conditions about racks on campus was collected. A photo of each bike rack was also taken to start an inventory of the different bicycle rack types that are used at Clemson University. A small group of bicycle lockers were also located on campus. They are owned by CORE, and are currently not being used. See the map below for more detailed information.

    Campus Bike Parking & Storage Locations

  • Traffic Counts +

    Annual average daily traffic (ADT) counts are taken every year by the South Carolina Department of Transportation. Traffic count stations are placed on many of the Campus and Forest roads. Traffic counts are useful to keep track of traffic volume trends and can be used to help determine what bikeway facility type (bike lane, shared roadway) should be used. Roads that contain ADT volumes that are less than 5,000 and have speed limits posted at 35 mph or less may be best suited for shared roadways. Roads with ADT volumes greater than 5,000 and have speeds limits that are posted at greater than 35 mph may be best suited for bike lanes. The following table records annual ADT data from 2006 – 2010 on Campus and Forest roads. A map with station locations can be found below.

    Annual Average Daily Travel Counts, 2006-2010
    Road Name Station 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 Percentage Change
    2006 - 2010
    Hwy 123 105 28,800 28,800 27,500 26,700 28,200 -0.4%
    Hwy 123 107 31,700 34,000 31,600 30,900 32,900 0.7%
    Hwy 76 111 21,800 22,000 22,900 22,500 22,700 0.8%
    Hwy 76 113 20,900 20,900 21,200 21,500 21,300 0.4%
    Hwy 76 115 14,100 14,400 14,300 14,800 16,300 2.7%
    Old Grnvl Hwy 245 11,400 10,900 10,900 10,600 11,000 -0.7%
    Old Grnvl Hwy 247 7,800 8,800 7,800 7,200 7,100 -2.0%
    Old Grnvl Hwy 249 12,300 13,300 11,500 10,700 11,200 -2.0%
    Old Grnvl Hwy 251 14,300 14,300 13,500 13,100 14,300 0.0%
    Old Grnvl Hwy 253 15,200 15,100 16,900 16,700 16,100 1.1%
    College Ave 305 15,700 16,000 4,100 14,100 15,200 -0.7%
    College Ave 307 13,500 15,100 15,100 13,800 12,700 -1.3%
    Six Mile Hwy 309 6,000 6,100 6,100 5,600 5,700 -1.1%
    Six Mile Hwy 311 5,600 4,900 4,900 4,800 5,300 -1.1%
    College Ave 303 11,300 11,900 11,000 10,600 11,700 0.7%
    Pendleton Rd 418 7,300 7,300 7,200 6,800 7,100 -0.6%
    Old Seneca Rd 503 1,500 1,500 1,850 1,550 1,600 1.3%
    Old Seneca Rd 593 1,300 1,350 1,700 1,350 1,400 1.4%
    Old Stone Church Rd 689 2,600 3,100 3,200 3,000 3,600 5.6%
    Old Stone Church Rd 691 8,300 8,500 8,900 8,200 9,100 1.8%
    Old Cherry Rd 693 6,400 6,900 7,100 6,900 7,000 1.7%
    Old Cherry Rd 695 6,700 6,600 7,100 6,600 6,200 -1.6%
    Cherry Rd 696 7,500 7,600 7,500 7,000 7,400 -0.3%
    Perimeter Rd 697 9,500 9,300 9,000 9,100 9,300 -0.4%
    Perimeter Rd 699 11,800 12,300 12,100 11,900 11,500 -0.5%
    Perimeter Rd 701 8,400 8,400 8,600 7,700 7,700 -1.8%
    Perimeter Rd 703 8,900 9,100 9,200 9,600 9,300 0.9%
    Old Cherry Rd 705 4,900 4,500 4,700 5,000 5,400 1.9%
    Klugh Ave 715 2,500 2,300 2,300 2,200 1,950 -5.6%
    McMillan Rd 721 3,300 3,200 2,900 2,500 2,800 -3.6%
    Old Stadium Rd 767 1,750 1,850 1,900 1,450 1,350 -5.9%
    Newman Rd 797 3,400 3,200 3,100 2,400 2,400 -8.3%
    Jersey Ln 811 850 900 900 900 1,000 3.0%
    Clemson St 825 325 300 275 300 350 1.4%
    Cherry Rd 841 8,400 7,900 7,700 7,400 7,900 -1.3%
    Calhoun Dr 843 4,900 4,200 3,800 4,200 4,200 -3.3%
    Fort Hill St 845 3,000 3,200 2,700 2,900 2,800 -1.4%
    Williamson Rd 851 6,400 6,600 7,400 5,700 5,800 -2.1%
    Avenue of Champions 853 750 750 950 1,000 1,200 7.5%
    Fernow St 855 2,500 2,300 2,400 2,000 2,400 -0.8%
    S Palmetto Blvd 857 3,200 3,000 2,700 2,400 2,800 -2.9%
    Calhoun St 859 3,300 3,900 4,000 3,700 3,700 2.2%

    Clemson Area Traffic Count Stations   Clemson Traffic Count Stations

  • Clemson University Sustainability Survey +

    A Clemson University Sustainability Survey was completed in the spring of 2011. 60% of respondents felt that it is important that the University be a leader in sustainability and the environment. A majority of respondents felt a sense of responsibility and an ability to protect the environment. Despite these attitudes and feelings, 70% of respondents indicated that they drove cars when given a choice to either ride a bike or drive a car.

  • CUPD Bike Patrol Survey +

    The Clemson University Police Department has a Bicycle Patrol volunteer program. Police officers that choose to be part of the program are trained, and divide their patrol time between using cars and bicycles during their shift on the main part of the campus. The Department has a Bike Patrol Survey available online that provides feedback on the service of the program. Respondents felt that officers on bikes were more approachable, they were an asset to forming a safer campus community and that the program was a way to promote the Clemson Solid Green program. They also indicated that the bike patrol was not that visible on campus.

  • Student Projects Related to Bikeways +

    Image of Old Greenville Highway reduced to 3 lanes. Intersection near Sikes Hall. A 2011 Landscape Architecture Capstone Project looked at biking in the greater Clemson area. A survey on biking and walking habits was included. Over half of respondents indicated that they would be more comfortable biking to campus if it was safer. 40% said that if they had a bike or if their bike was fixed they would be more likely to bike. Of those that currently bike, 70% like to bike because it’s good exercise. Respondents also indicated that a major barrier to not biking is the lack of having a working bicycle.

    In 2011, a Civil Engineering Capstone Project proposed a 3-lane road diet for the Old Greenville Highway corridor that runs from the intersection of Perimeter Road to the intersection of Cherry Road. The project included designs that reduced the total number of vehicular traffic lanes from four to three with the additional space dedicated to bike lanes, sidewalks and bus shelters.

    Trail use in the North Forest was the focus of a 2012 thesis by a doctoral student in the Department of Parks, Recreation and Tourism Management. Trail conditions, use and design was reviewed and mapped throughout the North Forest to evaluate use and inform management decisions in the future. Visitor experience and distribution was also assessed. The intent of the study is to conduct a comprehensive assessment of how visitors use and influence the North Forest and how North Forest management can best serve visitors. Thesis results were not available at the time of the completion of this plan but will be reviewed and incorporated into this plan as appropriate.

  • 2007 Parking and Transportation Master Plan +

    In 2007, the University developed a Parking and Transportation Master Plan. Transportation demand management programming was examined, and Cornell University was used as a case study university. According to the plan, two key elements were required for a successful bicycle program at Clemson: secure parking and safe routes. The plan mentioned that a bike path to Hwy 76 was planned and that starting a small pilot bike share program should be considered. A recommendation of the plan was to increase covered, enclosed bicycle storage on campus.

  • 2005 Clemson Travel Patterns +

    In 2005, a City and Regional Planning Studio examined travel patterns on campus. Survey results indicated that the ideal bicycle commute time would be between 5-15 minutes. 4% of respondents used a bicycle to travel to campus. A majority of respondents indicated that they would like more bike lanes, and 48% requested covered bike racks. One-fifth of those respondents would be willing to pay higher student fees for these facility improvements. Aggressive Drivers and a lack of bike lanes were the main issues identified as reasons why cyclists avoid certain parts of Clemson. The survey found that biggest barrier to biking was not having a bike on campus.

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