Bicycle and Pedestrian Services

Bicycle and pedestrian friendly communities are happier, healthier, safer, and more livable places. Creating a welcoming environment for bicycling and walking improves resident’s quality of life. Encouraging biking and walking reduces a community’s automobile dependence. This allows residents to become more active, reduces carbon emissions, and creates an equitable transportation network for all—regardless of age, physical ability, or income. Bicycle and pedestrian friendly communities also benefit economically; encouraging local spending, spurring tourism, and creating jobs. Asheville has been recognized as both a silver level Walk Friendly Community and bronze level Bicycle Friendly Community. The City’s Transportation Department aims to support biking and pedestrian services through the City through its plans, policies, and project implementation.

The following sections on this page contain additional information to resources that align with the bicycling and pedestrian services provided within the City’s Transportation Department.

Complete Streets

2022 GAP Plan

2016 Asheville In Motion Mobility Plan

2008 Comprehensive Bicycle Plan

2005 Pedestrian Plan

Pedestrian and Bicycle Counts

Bike Locker Locations

NCDOT Pedestrian & Bicycle Road Safety Audits

Get Involved


Complete Streets

The City adopted a complete streets policy in 2012.  You can review the policy here.

What are Complete Streets?

Complete streets are streets for everyone. They are designed and operated to enable safe access for all users, including pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists and transit riders of all ages and abilities. Complete streets make it easy to cross the street, walk to shops, and bicycle to work. They allow buses to run on time and make it safe for people to walk to and from transit stops.

By adopting a Complete Streets Policy, Asheville’s City Council directed city planners and engineers to routinely design, maintain, and operate streets to enable safe access for all users, regardless of age, ability, or mode of transportation. This means that with every transportation project we seek to make the street network better and safer for pedestrians, bicyclists, transit users and motor vehicle drivers and passengers.

The North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) also adopted a complete streets policy. You can read about that at

What does a “complete street” look like?

There is not a single design for a complete street; each can be different and should be context sensitive based on the unique conditions and needs of the community. Elements of complete streets may include sidewalks, bicycle facilities, comfortable and accessible public transportation stops, frequent and safe crossing opportunities, median islands, accessible pedestrian signals, curb extensions, narrower travel lanes, roundabouts and more. However, some streets, especially low volume residential streets with sidewalks and safe crossings, may sufficient meet the needs of the street without additional features.

Where can I learn more about complete streets?

More information is available from the National Coalition for Complete Streets at Smart Growth America


2022 GAP Plan logo for Close the GAP planning process

In October 2022, City Council adopted the GAP Plan which was produced through the Close the GAP Planning Process. This plan provides updates to the City’s Greenway Master Plan (G), ADA Transition Plan (A)*, and Pedestrian Master Plan (P) in one comprehensive document.

These plans were combined because Asheville’s overall pedestrian network will be stronger if the three aspects – greenways, ADA accessibility, and pedestrian networks are considered and planned at the same time. The GAP Plan identifies greenway, accessibility, and pedestrian networks for our community as well as programs and policies to support the expansion of these networks.

For information, go to the Close the GAP Page.


2016 Asheville In Motion Mobility Plan

The City adopted its Asheville In Motion (AIM) Mobility Plan in 2016. 

AIM is designed to provide a cohesive strategy and method to prioritize transportation projects, with a goal of improving multimodal connections. This plan aligns the City’s existing pedestrian, bicycle, and transit plans and provides frameworks to consider as incremental decisions are made regarding Asheville’s transportation network.

Through this planning process, the City endeavored to create an effective and progressive plan that encourages health-oriented and sustainable transportation, reduces barriers to access transportation, and connects residents and visitors with the places they want and need to go with improved safety, efficiency and accessibility. The AIM Plan was an important community-driven step to absorb and enhance growth in a way that balances travel needs and creates true choices among the City’s mobility options. 


2008 Comprehensive Bicycle Plan

In 2007, the City of Asheville and the North Carolina Department of Transportation jointly funded the city’s first comprehensive bicycle transportation plan. The Toole Design Group assisted by Livable Streets, Inc., created the plan with guidance from a steering committee and the public. The plan was adopted by the Asheville City Council on February 26, 2008.

The plan built on existing assets in the City, including a vibrant and engaged bicycle community, diverse range of bicyclists, existing bicycle facilities and what was then an emerging greenway network. It attempted to address challenges that bicyclists face, such as access, connectivity, and safety. It strove to improve bicycle conditions on all roads, including large commercial arterial roads, while also addressing issues such education and awareness, driver behavior, and maintenance of bicycle facilities.

This plan was updated by the bicycle framework chapter (page 66) in the Asheville in Motion (AIM) Plan, but there are still valuable recommendations in the 2008 bicycle plan.


2005 Pedestrian Plan

On May 25, 1999, the Asheville City Council adopted the City of Asheville Pedestrian Thoroughfare Plan. The Plan was designed to prioritize capital improvement and maintenance projects for the city with special consideration for addressing Americans with Disabilities Act compliance issues and for addressing critical pedestrian transportation and safety.

Five years later, city staff developed this revision to keep the City Pedestrian Plan current and useful to the city and the public and to expand funding approaches. This version of the Pedestrian Plan is designed to provide city staff and elected officials with good, technical information to make decisions on where to invest limited resources and how to improve policies and procedures that improve pedestrian safety and infrastructure.

With this version of the Pedestrian Plan, the city continues its ongoing commitment to improve the quality of life for all its citizens through improved access, inter-modal transportation and effective stewardship of our city’s pedestrian infrastructure and financial resources.

The City of Asheville Pedestrian Plan


Pedestrian and Bicycle Counts

Data matters. When we know how many people are walking and bicycling, we are better prepared to provide facilities to support those activities. Working with volunteers from the Asheville Bicycle and Pedestrian Task Force, the Blue Ridge Bicycle Club, Asheville on Bikes, and other interested members of the community, we conduct pedestrian and bicycle user counts in Asheville each September. Pedestrians and bicyclists are tallied during two-hour periods, usually from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday in mid-September. You can see the 2017 report here, which includes a listing of the counts since we began, and the report from the 2023 count here.

Volunteers are the backbone of this effort, it will not happen unless we have volunteers. If you are interested in volunteering, the commitment is approximately three hours over two days. Training is required, but no special skills are needed. Email with questions or to sign up to help.


Bicycle Locker Locations

45 Wall Street

12 Rankin Avenue

68 Rankin Avenue

The City of Asheville has several locations where you can safely secure your bike while you shop, work, or even if you live downtown. The City offers several locations, as listed above, where bikes can be stored. The lockers are safe, convenient, and easy to use. You can sign up today for only $10.00 a month. Simply complete the Bike Locker Application form online, or bring it to the Parking Services Office located at 45 Wall Street in Downtown Asheville. Call us for a tour of the locations, or stop by at the above listed locations and see them for yourself. If you have any questions, call us at 828-259-5792. 


NCDOT Pedestrian & Bicycle Road Safety Audits

The City of Asheville was identified as one of the cities with higher rates of pedestrian/motor vehicle crashes in the document entitled “North Carolina Pedestrian Facts 2008-2012” that was published in 2014.  As a result of that distinction, the North Carolina Department of Transportation initiated a project in 2015 with the following goals and objectives:

  • Identify potential strategies to improve the pedestrian and bicycle environment.
  • Review pedestrian and bicycle crashes between 2005 and 2014 (10 years) to identify contributing factors, trends and patterns.
  • Conduct three Road Safety Audits (based on the review) to identify potential safety counter-measures.

Pedestrian and bicycle-focused road safety audits (RSA) were conducted by independent, multidisciplinary teams along three identified corridors and the reports can be found at the following links:

Tunnel Road North

Patton Avenue

Merrimon Avenue/Broadway/Biltmore Avenue

The local North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT) and the City of Asheville formed a Pedestrian & Bicycle Work Group that meets on a regular basis to review and address pedestrian and bicycle issues in Asheville and Buncombe County. The group works together to find ways to implement the recommendations from road safety audits as funds become available. In addition, the working group will conduct road safety audits on the other identified corridors and we will be reviewing all pedestrian and bicycle needs on a case-by-case basis with the overall goal of improving the pedestrian and bicycle environment.


Get Involved!

The work of City staff is greatly supported by local volunteers. Here are a few ways to get involved:


Contact Information

If you would like additional information about bicycle planning, pedestrian planning and/or related policies in the City of Asheville please contact:

Anna Sexton, AICP, Urban Planner II, 828-232-4540