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Facebook Likes Cycling for Employees

Report to Menlo's Bike Commission paves the way for bike usage at new campus.

The Facebook Project’s Environmental Impact Report was presented to Menlo Park's Bicycle Commission Monday night, marking the beginning of a series of informational sessions about a Draft EIR that has motivated cycling enthusiasts from all over the Bay Area to discuss connecting bike routes on the Peninsula.

Facebook is paving the way for an expanded employee headcount and intends to provide office space for about 6,600 employees, a number that the company is negotiating with the city.

If approved, this would almost double the maximum amount of on-site employees that are allowed by the property’s Conditional Development Permit, which was set when it was inhabited by Sun Microsystems employees.

The social networking company is proposing an exchange of that employee density limit for a cap on the number of trips their employees can take to get to work.    

According to the EIR, Facebook’s project could be the cause of 15,000 trips to and from Facebook as soon as 2015, with about 2,600 taking place during the morning and evening rush hours. Add that to the traffic from the and the and the numbers forecast intense vehicular congestion on major thoroughfares.

To combat this, Facebook is promoting the use of bicycles to get to and from work, while building food and fitness facilities on site that reduce the likelihood of employees leaving the campus on their lunch hour, says Jessica Herrera, Facebook’s Transportation Coordinator.

“We’re trying as much as we can to promote cycling and we definitely want to continue the percentage of cyclists we have and grow that,” Herrera said Monday.

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commuter December 13, 2011 at 10:58 PM
A lot of Facebook employees live near the old Facebook campus in Palo Alto. Bicycle routes between there and the new Facebook campus are pretty poor. Road surfaces are poor (potholes and trash). Intersections are poorly designed for bicyclists (especially crossing El Camino, Caltrain, and Hwy 101). And lighting is poor in many areas. Is Facebook going to help fix this before the new campus opens?

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