From Velo News — The Explainer: Crowded streets can lead to dangerous sidewalks

I read a ton of bike-friendly news outlets, and I follow the pro cycling scene religiously. On my daily reading journey around the Interwebs, I saw the following essay on Velo News; it’s the latest in a recurring column there called “The Explainer”, written by noted bike journalist Charles Pelkey. Surprise, surprise…a well-written advocacy piece on a site that focuses primarily on the go-fast crowd…

The column describes some of the bike/auto and bike/ped conflicts as they pertain to a recent study that was reported by the New York Times.

To me, bike/auto accidents and bike/pedestrian accidents are both symptomatic of a lack of insight on the part of generally myopic — and often underfunded — traffic planners. Urban streets around the world are becoming meaner, largely because we see more and more people relying on cars to get from point A to point B … even when that trip involves relatively short distances.

The problem is exacerbated when those who would normally feel comfortable riding a bike find themselves worrying about their own safety and opt to get in a car. Ensconced in a motorized steel cage, that potential cyclist now adds to the crowding on streets instead of reducing it. That further adds to traffic and, in turn, may cause a slightly braver cyclist to reconsider his choice, which in turn adds to crowding and … as the Germans say, und so weiter, und so weiter.

Swing on over to Velo News to read the full article…lots of food for thought there.

About the author

Bicycle commuter since 1989, bicycle enthusiast for 30+ years. I am a Bookmobile/Books By Mail librarian at a large library system and the proud father of two wonderful boys.