Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Just Say NO to Bike Lanes

Many misguided motorists believe bikes should not be on the road. They see bikes as toys and cyclists as recreationalists tying up their "serious" roadways. They believe they own the road because they pay fuel taxes.
By making bike specific lanes and paths this belief is reinforced and motorists see their tax dollars being squandered.
Roads are for transportation. Bicycles are a transportation tool. For the room cyclists take on the roadway and their impact on the roadway cyclists pay their fair share in income & property taxes to have a right to a share of the road.
Bike specific lanes will confuse the already challenged driver. When a cyclist makes a left turn, he must exit "his" lane and move to his proper place in the roadway. If motorists are convinced that the cyclist should stay in "his" lane he will not be looking for the slow cyclist anywhere else.
The idea of being in the right side of a center lane is a difficult notion for the average motorist to grasp already. Will he be able to comprehend a fast cyclist moving out of the bicycle lane to pass a slow cyclist (like me ?)
Making the poor motorist think more is dangerous as it will confuse him and cause him to make mistakes.
Bicycles should be part of the natural traffic pattern.
Councilman Greg Harris is proposing bike lanes on an easily traversable section of Spring Grove Avenue. AFAIK the real problems with cycling on that road are not going to be addressed. The proposal, while well intentioned, is not in the best interest of cyclists in the long term.
Restriping lanes to give the curb lane a few extra inches, keeping the curb lane clear of debris is all that is needed.

2 comments:

dave said...

I tend to agree with you on this. What are your thoughts on bike boxes?

http://www.streetfilms.org/archives/how-to-use-a-bike-box/

Quim said...

whaddyamean, you agree with me on this ? You don't agree with me on everything ?
That bike box plan looks pretty ridiculous to me. Really, what's the difference between that and just going to the curb and using the crosswalk with the pedestrians ?
When I saw "Bike Boxes", I first thought of bike lockers, which I have thought should be available in the Fountain Square garage for years. The professionals who would ride their bikes downtown don't ride bikes you just chain to playground bike racks.