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GUIDELINES FOR ANALYSIS OF INVESTMENTS IN BICYCLE FACILITIES SUMMARY BACKGROUND Transportation planning and policy efforts at all levels of government aim to increase levels of walking and bicycling. To make the best use of limited transportation funds there is a critical need for better information about two important considerations relating to bicycle facilities. The first of these is the cost of different bicycle investment options. The second is the value of the effects such investments have on bicycle use and mode share, including the resulting environmental, economic, public health, and social benefits. Deci- sions on transportation projects are typically based on the potential for the project to contribute to broad public policy goals. As such, information on the benefits and costs of bicycle facility projects will help decisionmakers develop modal options and provide travelers with more transportation choices. ESTIMATING BICYCLE FACILITY COSTS The purpose of the benefit-cost analysis is to provide transportation planners with information to estimate costs of different types of bicycle facilities. The facilities described are generic and independent of specific locations. The discussion therefore provides a preliminary cost estimate. As more specific information is gathered about a proposed facility, the planner, engineer, or project manager can develop more refined estimates to reflect these specifics or replace them with more detailed project-specific estimates. Costs for infrastructure projects are commonly divided into two major categories: capital costs and operating costs. Capital costs are expenditures for constructing facilities and procuring equipment. These are viewed as one time costs that have both a physical and an economic life of multiple years. Capital facilities and equipment have a multi-year life, and therefore are assets whose value can be amortized over time and financed over time with instruments such as municipal bonds. Operating costs generally result in no tangible asset. Such recurring expenses are commonly funded through annual budgets. Operating costs for public facilities include maintenance such as cleaning, landscaping, equipment repair, security and safety, and supplies needed to conduct these activities. Some or all of these operating costs may be