As the regional coordinator of active transportation efforts in Orange County, OCTA provides information and programs that help residents stay active by walking and cycling in support of a multimodal transportation system. In response to the coronavirus (COVID-19), OCTA has adapted projects and programs to fit the current situation, creatively undertaking public involvement, and evaluating the effects the pandemic is having on active transportation in Orange County.
During the past four years, OCTA has used grant funding from the California State Office of Traffic Safety Highway Safety Program to host bicycle and pedestrian skills classes and develop campaigns to distribute safety equipment. OCTA completed the 2020 Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Project in September. This project focused on promoting safe walking and bicycling for transit riders.
Additional grants enabled OCTA to deliver activities to schools and increase the reach of these programs countywide. Programs foster continued collaboration and partnership among OCTA, school districts, the Orange County Health Care Association, cities, law enforcement agencies, and Caltrans.
To understand how active transportation users experience Orange County’s transportation system, OCTA launched three initiatives. The Bike Gap Closure Feasibility Study will evaluable three bikeway gaps in Orange County to recommend a backbone network that links to other regional and local bikeways. The Cyclic Counts Program will assess changes in active transportation travel behavior during the pandemic to collect data for grants, evaluate existing facilities, and inform decision making about where to locate facilities in the future. In addition, OCTA released the 2020 Orange County Bikeways Map Guide in October in collaboration with Orange County cities.
OCTA and its partners will continue to make use of technologies and techniques to adapt to the pandemic while providing for the safety and mobility of Orange County residents.