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Tag Archive: streetsblog

Bike infrastructure = must-have for today’s cities

A couple of news items and an associated report caught our attention this week — based on a study jointly conducted by advocacy groups PeopleForBikes and the Alliance for Biking and Walking, cities simply cannot afford to go without modern bike infrastructure:

It isn’t window dressing. Or a “hip cities” thing. Bike infrastructure — not the watered-down stuff, but high-quality bikeways that get more people on bikes — is becoming a must-have for cities around the U.S.

That’s according to a new report from Bikes Belong and the Alliance for Biking and Walking. Researchers at these groups interviewed 15 business leaders from around the country about what impact bike facilities are having on their bottom line.

Read the article covering the release (including important key points) by visiting the D.C. Streetsblog page, or download the PDF report directly by clicking here. Although the report focuses its attention on protected, separated bike lanes, there are important lessons here for city planners and politicians to learn.

In any case, it’s an interesting and eye-opening read…but what I liked hearing from the report is that people who use a bike to get to and from work are smarter, healthier, and more creative. No surprises there, of course — we’re smarter and better-looking on two wheels than the average car-bound citizen!

Bicycle Backlash in NYC

My, my, my…the bicyclists in New York City have it rough. Over the past few years, bicycle use has EXPLODED in the city. With that tremendous growth comes the seemingly-inevitable backlash (dubbed by some pundits in NYC tabloids as the “Bikelash”), something we’ve talked about here on Bikecommuters.com in the past.

As new bike lanes sprouted along New York’s streets, there was an effort by some residents of Prospect Park (and other neighborhoods in Brooklyn) to have those lanes removed. Luckily, a State Supreme Court judge ruled against the residents’ lawsuit this past week.

And, as more cyclists took to the streets, the NYPD made a concerted effort to crack down on two-wheeled scofflaws, which didn’t always pan out well for them (or for law-abiding cyclists, either). Bike Snob NYC has written quite a bit about the crackdown, and you may have read about the woman allegedly stopped by police for wearing a short skirt.

Well, now there appears to be a growing debate between pedestrians and cyclists about conflicts on bridges in the Big Apple. BreakThru Radio made a short video documenting some of this clash, and they asked us to share it with you:

Should Bikes Be Banned From The Bridges? – BTR Pulse [ep39] from BreakThru Radio TV on Vimeo.

And, to offer a sobering counterpoint to this perceived backlash, an article recently appeared in bike industry magazine Bicycle Retailer that examines more closely the “bikelash” and the media hype surrounding it. It’s worth a read, so click here to check out that article.

Another Tactic for Complete Streets Advocates?

The following article appeared on the Streetsblog Network a few weeks ago…hat tip to longtime reader Raiyn for bringing it to my attention.

In the article, Transit Miami reports that the South Florida Bicycle Coalition is “seek[ing] legal action if FDOT does not include bike lanes in the Sunset Drive resurfacing project without the required design exception, traffic and impact studies.….” Read the full article by clicking here.

I’m somewhat torn about this technique…while I’ve long joked to fellow cyclists that we should file class-action lawsuits to get things going here in Florida, I’m all too aware that we’re an overly-litigious society and resorting to this tactic may hinder rather than help future projects.

What’s your feeling about lawsuits to “get our way”?