Wednesday, August 16, 2006

I love to bike. We need to use more bikes. The city can do much more in this area. But, let's do it right

From Dan Sullivan:
The City Planning Department is proposing a really bad bicycle lane through Bloomfield and down to the Strip District along Liberty Avenue. It will make bicycling along that route far more hazardous. Basically, roadside bike lanes make bicyclists *feel* safer while actually making them feel less safe. The project is supported by Bike Pittsburgh, based on "conventional wisdom."

I have written a flyer about the dangers of roadside bicycle lanes at:

There are very good links on the back of the flyer. One of them, "American Bicycle Politics," shows how bike lanes serve the agendas of various interest groups without actually serving the interests of bicycle safety. It is a good analysis study of how pressure groups cause political bureaucracies to screw things up.

Below is Bike Pittsburgh's announcement about the presentation:

On 9 Aug 2006 at 15:02, Bike Pittsburgh wrote:

Action Alert: August 19th - Liberty Avenue Bike Lane Public Meeting!

Bike Pittsburgh needs you to show up and voice your support for a brand new bike facility that will be painted on Liberty Ave. in the heart of Bloomfield! The city is planning on using a combination of bike lanes and shared lane markings from Ligonier St. to Baum Blvd. in both directions. We have been working with City Planning on this
project for almost a year, and we're very close to seeing this happen, but they first want to inform the Bloomfield community on what they plan to do. Since there is a very real possibility that people will show up who do not ride bikes and might be against the project, there needs to be overwhelming support and presence from the bicycling community (especially from those of you who live in and around

We don't want to intimidate anyone, but we want to make sure that we are noticed and that we are going to stand behind the city's decision to go forward with this project.This is a huge step in a positive direction for Pittsburgh. If you're a bicyclist and want to see this particular project as well as future bike lane projects happen, show up! Come to this event, learn about the project, stand united, and show how many people in the city want safer bike facilities!

Try your best to bike to the event, but if you must drive please don't park in the garage. It is needed for patient visitation.

Saturday, August 19, 2006, 2:00 pm at West Penn Hospital on Liberty Ave. in
Bloomfield, Wintergarden Auditorium (entrance off of Friendship Ave.) Hosted by: Pittsburgh Department of City Planning

This is typical. The city's planning office is now on year 15 of their 2 year plan.


Matt H said...

Bikes shouldn't be on the same road with vehichles. When bikes have engines I'll start "sharing the road" with them.

I have almost been in a few accidents because of these bikes going to slow and weaving in and out of traffic.

Get these things off the main roads.

Mark Rauterkus said...

There are bikes in China that do have electric engines. They are very efficient and make a good ride.

You are right, a slow moving bike should not be on the road going in and out of traffic. Nor should it be on the sidewalk, unless it is being walked.

Bing said...

We should have bicycle lanes so as not to disturb the traffic flow of vehicles. I do love biking and think that if a lot of people can bike their way to work or school or for their errands, we could cut pollution levels tremendously and have healthier citizens.

Anonymous said...

Please grow up Matt H. Your very narrow view of what a road is for is extremely sad. Bicycles are required to ride on the streets, and most civilized cities of this size have been embracing them for many good reasons. I agree that many cyclists are not conscientious riders and risk causing themselves harm and increased agitation of powered-vehicle drivers. This issue needs education on both sides.