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"Biking in cities can be complicated, and map apps can only help so much" January 31, 2024

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sms

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Feb 2, 2024, 4:34:03 PMFeb 2
to
"Biking in cities can be complicated, and map apps can only help so
much." "They were finding the main roads because they’re faster, but
they’re unpleasant to cycle on."

https://www.marketplace.org/2024/01/31/cyclists-cities-bike-infrastructure-maps/

Kai Ryssdall interviewing Laura Laker, freelance journalist in London
writing about active transit and the author of the upcoming book,
“Potholes and Pavements: A bumpy ride on Britain’s National Cycle Network.”

Roger Merriman

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Feb 2, 2024, 5:15:48 PMFeb 2
to
Which is the problem of shunting bikes off the main roads really as
navigation becomes trickier.

And another reason the ones that do use the main roads are successful ie
they are quick direct an all that.

To be honest I’ve found the apps for bikes are fairly woeful and I’m not
sure they are useful solution, personally if I have such a journey I plot
the route and use my Garmin to navigate.

I’m also lucky with location in that I’m at the end of well trodden cycle
route into town, with out much navigation required.

Roger Merriman

Frank Krygowski

unread,
Feb 2, 2024, 9:26:18 PMFeb 2
to
On 2/2/2024 4:34 PM, sms wrote:
> "Biking in cities can be complicated, and map apps can only help so
> much." "They were finding the main roads because they’re faster, but
> they’re unpleasant to cycle on."
>
> https://www.marketplace.org/2024/01/31/cyclists-cities-bike-infrastructure-maps/

It's largely a complaint about mapping apps for cycling, or using Google
maps for that purpose. I agree Google Maps isn't often the best. Until
recently we were Warm Showers hosts of touring cyclists. For a long
time, Google told people riding from Pittsburgh to our place, with full
packs, to climb one of the most famously difficult hills in the area. I
see that's now been corrected, perhaps in part because I submitted a map
correction covering that.

Regarding main roads: Some cyclists prefer them, some don't, and it
varies by situation as well as person. I usually prefer lower traffic
roads for the aesthetics, but there have been plenty of times I've taken
main roads (as in "Nobody would ride that!") just to get directly where
I was going and be done with it.

And that's a general problem with bike maps. Rather than recommending
one or two routes for a generic cyclist, as Google does, it would be
nice to be able to specify one's personal level of skill, the importance
of aesthetics, whether one prefers longer & flat vs. shorter and steep,
etc. then get a route recommendation that's somewhat personalized.

But: Whatever! All this will matter to me only when I do some tours out
of my known area; and I've always done well enough with paper maps,
which is what I prefer. Our local bike maps color code streets by
appropriate riding skill level, and they work well for lots of people.

--
- Frank Krygowski

Wolfgang Strobl

unread,
Feb 3, 2024, 6:24:04 AMFeb 3
to
Am Fri, 02 Feb 2024 22:15:44 GMT schrieb Roger Merriman
<ro...@sarlet.com>:

>sms <scharf...@geemail.com> wrote:
>> "Biking in cities can be complicated, and map apps can only help so
>> much." "They were finding the main roads because they’re faster, but
>> they’re unpleasant to cycle on."
>>
>> https://www.marketplace.org/2024/01/31/cyclists-cities-bike-infrastructure-maps/
>>
>> Kai Ryssdall interviewing Laura Laker, freelance journalist in London
>> writing about active transit and the author of the upcoming book,
>> “Potholes and Pavements: A bumpy ride on Britain’s National Cycle Network.”
>>
>
>Which is the problem of shunting bikes off the main roads really as
>navigation becomes trickier.

Yes indeed. In addition, it becomes more awkward and a little more
dangerous. Not unexpectedly, I might add. Even a child could observe
the fact that a badly build and badly maintained outer side of a road is
awkward to use, even more so an even less maintained, incomplete and
meandering tertiary network build in spaces that most people call "lost
places".

>
>And another reason the ones that do use the main roads are successful ie
>they are quick direct an all that.

These main roads are main roads because they were and are being built
exactly where there is a need for them.

>
>To be honest I’ve found the apps for bikes are fairly woeful and I’m not
>sure they are useful solution, personally if I have such a journey I plot
>the route and use my Garmin to navigate.

So do I. In my experience, those old, mostly pocket pc/Windows CE
based auto navi systems where better for finding a usable course while
riding than my more or less top of the line Garmin Edge 1030. I had to
avoid the bicycling profile on my Yakumo Delta 300, because that sent us
into the bushes, based on the assumption that all cyclists are
recreational cyclists prefering forest trails over all else. Using the
motorcycle/moped profile combined with "shortest route" instead was
almost perfect. In addition, those devices allowed to customize the
routing algorithm by changing the weights of different road categories,
simply by editing a text based configuration file.

>
>I’m also lucky with location in that I’m at the end of well trodden cycle
>route into town, with out much navigation required.


Problem is, like in most lotteries, most players are unlucky. Even
worse, the very existence of a nearby cycle route, even just the very
_belief_ of a motorist about the availibly of a propery maintained cycle
path that could get that pesty cyclist out of "his" road creates
bullying and very noticeable dangers for many more cyclists than luck
for those few lucky persons.

Unfortunately, although there are plenty of losers, there are still
enough lucky ones to dominate transport policy with regard to cycling.


--
Thank you for observing all safety precautions

Catrike Ryder

unread,
Feb 3, 2024, 7:24:41 AMFeb 3
to
It seems to me that these bike paths complaints are about urban and
suburban bike paths. As a purely recreational rider I do my best to
avoid them for the very reasons I've seen expressed here on RBT. In
fact, I do my best to avoid riding in any urban and suburban areas,
although, sometimes, I need faciliies or have an urge for a coffee or
a chocolate malt, and I take the plunge.

Catrike Ryder

unread,
Feb 3, 2024, 11:17:41 AMFeb 3
to
On Fri, 2 Feb 2024 21:26:11 -0500, Frank Krygowski
<frkr...@sbcglobal.net> wrote:

>On 2/2/2024 4:34 PM, sms wrote:
>> "Biking in cities can be complicated, and map apps can only help so
>> much." "They were finding the main roads because they’re faster, but
>> they’re unpleasant to cycle on."
>>
>> https://www.marketplace.org/2024/01/31/cyclists-cities-bike-infrastructure-maps/
>
>It's largely a complaint about mapping apps for cycling, or using Google
>maps for that purpose. I agree Google Maps isn't often the best. Until
>recently we were Warm Showers hosts of touring cyclists. For a long
>time, Google told people riding from Pittsburgh to our place, with full
>packs, to climb one of the most famously difficult hills in the area. I
>see that's now been corrected, perhaps in part because I submitted a map
>correction covering that.

Apparently, Krygowski can't comment on anything without slipping in a
little brag. "Look at what I did," he says.



Many narcissists enjoy bragging about themselves in grandiose and
exaggerated terms, be it their physical attractiveness, material
(trophy) possessions, social popularity, exciting lifestyle, merit
badge achievements, high-status associations, or other envy-worthy
attributes. While there’s nothing inherently wrong with describing
oneself in positive terms, the pathological narcissist does so in the
following unhealthy ways:

A. The self-flattering statements are often exaggerated.

B. The self-flattering statements are often uttered, directly or
indirectly, at the expense of others (“I’m better than you,” “you
don’t have what I have,” “they‘re nothing compared with me.”) The
narcissist’s fragile ego is boosted not by positively affirming
oneself, but by putting others down.

C. The self-admiring statements are intended for you to look up to and
adulate them. In essence, they want you to worship them, so they feel
“special," “exceptional," and “important."

It is with this superficial and compensatory outer “mask” that the
narcissist constructs his or her false identity, submerging an
insecure, wounded self.

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/communication-success/201807/5-ways-narcissists-compensate-for-their-inferiority

Roger Merriman

unread,
Feb 3, 2024, 11:53:25 AMFeb 3
to
Wolfgang Strobl <ne...@mystrobl.de> wrote:
> Am Fri, 02 Feb 2024 22:15:44 GMT schrieb Roger Merriman
> <ro...@sarlet.com>:
>
>> sms <scharf...@geemail.com> wrote:
>>> "Biking in cities can be complicated, and map apps can only help so
>>> much." "They were finding the main roads because they’re faster, but
>>> they’re unpleasant to cycle on."
>>>
>>> https://www.marketplace.org/2024/01/31/cyclists-cities-bike-infrastructure-maps/
>>>
>>> Kai Ryssdall interviewing Laura Laker, freelance journalist in London
>>> writing about active transit and the author of the upcoming book,
>>> “Potholes and Pavements: A bumpy ride on Britain’s National Cycle Network.”
>>>
>>
>> Which is the problem of shunting bikes off the main roads really as
>> navigation becomes trickier.
>
> Yes indeed. In addition, it becomes more awkward and a little more
> dangerous. Not unexpectedly, I might add. Even a child could observe
> the fact that a badly build and badly maintained outer side of a road is
> awkward to use, even more so an even less maintained, incomplete and
> meandering tertiary network build in spaces that most people call "lost
> places".
>
>>
>> And another reason the ones that do use the main roads are successful ie
>> they are quick direct an all that.

Absolutely as bikes are comparatively slow though in london less so, but
even so don’t generally want to take the long way around, I do on the
commute as the direct route is grim, I also if I do take the car do similar
as the direct route isn’t nice and I prefer to be 5/10 mins slower and have
a more chilled route in both cases.
>
> These main roads are main roads because they were and are being built
> exactly where there is a need for them.
>
>>
>> To be honest I’ve found the apps for bikes are fairly woeful and I’m not
>> sure they are useful solution, personally if I have such a journey I plot
>> the route and use my Garmin to navigate.
>
> So do I. In my experience, those old, mostly pocket pc/Windows CE
> based auto navi systems where better for finding a usable course while
> riding than my more or less top of the line Garmin Edge 1030. I had to
> avoid the bicycling profile on my Yakumo Delta 300, because that sent us
> into the bushes, based on the assumption that all cyclists are
> recreational cyclists prefering forest trails over all else. Using the
> motorcycle/moped profile combined with "shortest route" instead was
> almost perfect. In addition, those devices allowed to customize the
> routing algorithm by changing the weights of different road categories,
> simply by editing a text based configuration file.

I tend to plot routes than let the unit plot its own, only doing that if
I’ve found road blocked/bridge down sort of thing, and even then tend to
ask it to route to next obvious point, as the Garmin routing does like
cyclelanes any cyclelanes which makes for fiddly routing, though the 830 is
less so than the older Edge I had.
>
>>
>> I’m also lucky with location in that I’m at the end of well trodden cycle
>> route into town, with out much navigation required.
>
>
> Problem is, like in most lotteries, most players are unlucky. Even
> worse, the very existence of a nearby cycle route, even just the very
> _belief_ of a motorist about the availibly of a propery maintained cycle
> path that could get that pesty cyclist out of "his" road creates
> bullying and very noticeable dangers for many more cyclists than luck
> for those few lucky persons.

It’s one of the few that reaches, out to edge of london though not only
one, clearly quite large population that can use even just that one, more
than large enough to be a city.

It’s unusual in terms of its distance ie folks using it to commute 15/20
miles in, which also to do with demographics ie professional folks who live
out this way. There are more cycling routes around london very few if any
stretch out 20 something miles.

Note this is a routes some parts may have a cyclelane/cycleway or not most
will predate any infrastructure. It’s the routes folks have used for
decades.
>
> Unfortunately, although there are plenty of losers, there are still
> enough lucky ones to dominate transport policy with regard to cycling.
>
>
In my experience certainly the flagship stuff the increased cyclists is
good, but I notice the increased diversity ie not just the brave and fast,
of which I’m one!

Roger Merriman

Wolfgang Strobl

unread,
Feb 4, 2024, 5:56:31 AMFeb 4
to
Am Sat, 03 Feb 2024 07:24:35 -0500 schrieb Catrike Ryder
<Sol...@old.bikers.org>:

>On Sat, 03 Feb 2024 12:23:43 +0100, Wolfgang Strobl
><ne...@mystrobl.de> wrote:
>
>>Am Fri, 02 Feb 2024 22:15:44 GMT schrieb Roger Merriman
>><ro...@sarlet.com>:

...

>>>I’m also lucky with location in that I’m at the end of well trodden cycle
>>>route into town, with out much navigation required.
>>
>>
>>Problem is, like in most lotteries, most players are unlucky. Even
>>worse, the very existence of a nearby cycle route, even just the very
>>_belief_ of a motorist about the availibly of a propery maintained cycle
>>path that could get that pesty cyclist out of "his" road creates
>>bullying and very noticeable dangers for many more cyclists than luck
>>for those few lucky persons.
>>
>>Unfortunately, although there are plenty of losers, there are still
>>enough lucky ones to dominate transport policy with regard to cycling.
>
>It seems to me that these bike paths complaints are about urban and
>suburban bike paths.

Not so.

These mostly mandatory bike paths certainly are more of a hassle, when
commuting in urban areas, as I did for decades. There are time
constraints and you have no choice about the destination.

But forcing cyclists to use inferior ways in rural areas isn't better,
it's just different. The road network is less dense there, so you often
have the very same problem of not having a usable alternative, because
the distances of potential alternative routes exceed your capabilites as
a cyclist. Remember: different from motorists, cyclists have a very
limited power budget.

>As a purely recreational rider I do my best to
>avoid them for the very reasons I've seen expressed here on RBT.

Being retired some years now, outside of shopping and occasional visits,
all my rides are recreational, in a way. But I still have to ride
starting from home. Driving the family car for many miles every other
day, for just riding my bike a fraction of that distanc somewhere
outsitde of town isn't something I indend to do or to talk other people
into. Actually, its excactly what I strictly want to avoid.


>In
>fact, I do my best to avoid riding in any urban and suburban areas,
>although, sometimes, I need faciliies or have an urge for a coffee or
>a chocolate malt, and I take the plunge.
>

Fortunately, the part of the city where we live still allows cyclists to
use most ordinary roads for cycling. And, believe it or not, there is a
lot more everyday cycling here then in those parts of the city where
thei've built "cycling infrastructure". Personally, I don't need
"Tempo 30" (30 km/h == 19 mph) instead of the default 31 mph, but I
suppose that's all it takes to empower cyclists who have been scared to
death by the ubiquitous, car-affine fear-mongering created for that very
purpose.

For vacations, we prefer and use rural areas specifically choose for
there absence of "cycling infrastructure". Works great.


--
Bicycle helmets are the Bach flower remedies of traffic

Roger Merriman

unread,
Feb 4, 2024, 6:30:35 AMFeb 4
to
Wolfgang Strobl <ne...@mystrobl.de> wrote:
> Am Sat, 03 Feb 2024 07:24:35 -0500 schrieb Catrike Ryder
> <Sol...@old.bikers.org>:
>
>> On Sat, 03 Feb 2024 12:23:43 +0100, Wolfgang Strobl
>> <ne...@mystrobl.de> wrote:
>>
>>> Am Fri, 02 Feb 2024 22:15:44 GMT schrieb Roger Merriman
>>> <ro...@sarlet.com>:
>
> ...
>
>>>> I’m also lucky with location in that I’m at the end of well trodden cycle
>>>> route into town, with out much navigation required.
>>>
>>>
>>> Problem is, like in most lotteries, most players are unlucky. Even
>>> worse, the very existence of a nearby cycle route, even just the very
>>> _belief_ of a motorist about the availibly of a propery maintained cycle
>>> path that could get that pesty cyclist out of "his" road creates
>>> bullying and very noticeable dangers for many more cyclists than luck
>>> for those few lucky persons.
>>>
>>> Unfortunately, although there are plenty of losers, there are still
>>> enough lucky ones to dominate transport policy with regard to cycling.
>>
>> It seems to me that these bike paths complaints are about urban and
>> suburban bike paths.
>
> Not so.
>
> These mostly mandatory bike paths certainly are more of a hassle, when
> commuting in urban areas, as I did for decades. There are time
> constraints and you have no choice about the destination.

How did you end up with Mandatory bike paths? Certainly in uk any attempts
have failed miserably I think from memory one police officer overstepped
his position and the resulting court case made it very clear that cyclist
have the choice and right to use the roadway.
Roger Merriman


Catrike Ryder

unread,
Feb 4, 2024, 7:02:03 AMFeb 4
to
On Sun, 04 Feb 2024 11:56:09 +0100, Wolfgang Strobl
I am absolutely against prohibiting bicycles from riding on any roads
except, perhaps, limited access highways. To that extent, I'd have to
give a lot of thought to whether, and to what extent, I'd oppose
having them on limited access highways.

>>As a purely recreational rider I do my best to
>>avoid them for the very reasons I've seen expressed here on RBT.
>
>Being retired some years now, outside of shopping and occasional visits,
>all my rides are recreational, in a way. But I still have to ride
>starting from home. Driving the family car for many miles every other
>day, for just riding my bike a fraction of that distanc somewhere
>outsitde of town isn't something I indend to do or to talk other people
>into. Actually, its excactly what I strictly want to avoid.

I drive approximately five miles to where I start most of my rides. I
could ride it, and I have, but some of the route is a 55 mph, heavily
traveled, narrow two lane road, and, the bike is already in the back
of the truck. That's where it lives, except when I need the truck for
something else.

>>fact, I do my best to avoid riding in any urban and suburban areas,
>>although, sometimes, I need faciliies or have an urge for a coffee or
>>a chocolate malt, and I take the plunge.
>>
>
>Fortunately, the part of the city where we live still allows cyclists to
>use most ordinary roads for cycling. And, believe it or not, there is a
>lot more everyday cycling here then in those parts of the city where
>thei've built "cycling infrastructure". Personally, I don't need
>"Tempo 30" (30 km/h == 19 mph) instead of the default 31 mph, but I
>suppose that's all it takes to empower cyclists who have been scared to
>death by the ubiquitous, car-affine fear-mongering created for that very
>purpose.
>
>For vacations, we prefer and use rural areas specifically choose for
>there absence of "cycling infrastructure". Works great.

Riding with car and truck traffic requires significantly more
awareness than on the bike path, and that's one reason why I generally
choose not to do it any more. Another, of course, is that I have some
physical limitations and precautions.

sms

unread,
Feb 4, 2024, 11:08:24 AMFeb 4
to
On 2/3/2024 8:53 AM, Roger Merriman wrote:

<snip>

> Absolutely as bikes are comparatively slow though in london less so, but
> even so don’t generally want to take the long way around, I do on the
> commute as the direct route is grim, I also if I do take the car do similar
> as the direct route isn’t nice and I prefer to be 5/10 mins slower and have
> a more chilled route in both cases.

In my area, Silicon Valley, the commutes from the housing-rich areas to
the job-rich areas are often faster when you don't use the main roads
because of the increasing number of multi-use paths that avoid traffic
lights, stop signs, and surface-level railroad crossings. Even though
the speed limit is 15MPH, you don't have to be constantly stopping.
15MPH was fine pre-Ebike, now it's violated a lot but there is no
enforcement.

Most of these paths are along waterways and have no lights because the
water district says that lights disturb the wildlife and forbid them. So
you have to have good lights to use them at night.

Pre-pandemic, pre-remote-work, these multi-use paths were packed with
bicycle commuters going to Google, Microsoft, Intel, Nvidia etc.. Now
they are still well-used, but not as crowded, which makes them more
pleasant to use.

Look at <https://i.imgur.com/XBgNdTn.jpeg> and decide if you'd rather be
on the paved multi-use path (green), with no traffic lights and no
freeway or expressway interchanges, or having to navigate those
high-speed interchanges between expressways (bicycles allowed) and
freeways (red). I used that path even before it was paved because I
worked in that area.

A new multi-use path that will go between some of the Apple campuses in
Cupertino, combined with protected bike lanes, is in the works
<https://walkbikecupertino.org/2023/09/tamien-innu-moves-forward/>. It
was originally called the Junipero Serra trail, but given the history of
Father Junipero Serra the city dropped that name.

Also, in this area, some of the worst maintained roads are the more
major roads. It all depends on which government entity is tasked with
the maintenance of the roads (state, county, or city) and how much money
they're willing to spend to achieve a high PCI (pavement condition index).


Roger Merriman

unread,
Feb 4, 2024, 5:48:53 PMFeb 4
to
That does look direct, though I assume much like my old cycleway do need to
be reasonably close to start/end for it to be useful? Ie too far and not
worth it time wise at least, does though at a glance look fairly useful
location.


> A new multi-use path that will go between some of the Apple campuses in
> Cupertino, combined with protected bike lanes, is in the works
> <https://walkbikecupertino.org/2023/09/tamien-innu-moves-forward/>. It
> was originally called the Junipero Serra trail, but given the history of
> Father Junipero Serra the city dropped that name.
>
> Also, in this area, some of the worst maintained roads are the more
> major roads. It all depends on which government entity is tasked with
> the maintenance of the roads (state, county, or city) and how much money
> they're willing to spend to achieve a high PCI (pavement condition index).
>
>
>
My commute bike is an old MTB so within reason potholes etc just get socked
up in tire squish!

Roger Merriman


Rolf Mantel

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 5:23:19 AMFeb 5
to
Certainly such things have to be decided by the legislator:
"Let's proudly present roads free from bicycles to the international
guests at the Berlin Oylmpic games".

As opposed to most other ideas of that time, this one caught on and
spread all over the Continent, just like Napoleon's "drive on the right"
did 150 years earlier.


Roger Merriman

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 7:01:18 AMFeb 5
to
Any efforts to change this? I mean cycleways can be good but should be
choice for obvious reasons.

While I do use cycle infrastructure I don’t use it all or every day, ie
some is woeful and pointless if not actively risky, and some just aren’t
suitable if at speed and so on.

Roger Merriman

Rolf Mantel

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 7:51:08 AMFeb 5
to
Yes, in 1998, the rule was changed from "bicycles have to use bicycle
paths" to "bicycles have to use bicycle paths if they are marked with a
sign (white bicycle on blue background)". Around the same time, France
introduced a square road sign "optional bicycle path" to supplement the
round "mandatory bicycle path".

In both countries, cyclists have manged to turn approx. 10% of the
bicylce paths to optional ones, and car drivers are of the strong
opinion that cyclists must use all bicycle paths irrespective of legal
status and quality.



Roger Merriman

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 9:00:25 AMFeb 5
to
That argument was kinda made and settled early last century here, such
things as the road tax being changed to vehicle to stop entitlement and the
Cycling Touring Club who fought to keep bikes on the roads.

Plus some of the peak car infrastructure certainly in london failed such as
streets in the sky and so on.

Do have mandatory cycle lanes though they differ significantly in meaning
in that the mandatory means cars can’t use them than bikes have to.

Ie the non mandatory are literally just paint not even legal protection!

Roger Merriman

Frank Krygowski

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 11:30:24 AMFeb 5
to
On 2/4/2024 5:48 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:
>
> That does look direct, though I assume much like my old cycleway do need to
> be reasonably close to start/end for it to be useful? Ie too far and not
> worth it time wise at least...

That's true. As a guess, any one fancy bike facility in a city will be
within reach of just a couple percent of the population, most of whom
would never use it anyway. And those projects easily reach millions of
dollars in costs.

To achieve the glorious goals of really effective increases in bike mode
share, with measurable benefits regarding reduced congestion, increased
public health and reduced pollution, a city would need many dozens of
such fancy corridors plus lots of luck. The cost would likely be
hundreds of millions of dollars.

Amsterdam was able to do that, but the Amsterdam voters who approved
those efforts have greatly different attitudes and priorities than
American voters. American cities are more likely to get half-ass
approximations of good facilities, which do very little good and often
make things worse.

--
- Frank Krygowski

Frank Krygowski

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 11:53:20 AMFeb 5
to
Here in the U.S., the League of American Bicyclists used to be very
dedicated to preserving cyclists' rights to the road. In the past 15
years or so they've switched to heavily promoting segregation. Some say
the change was pushed by prominent bike industry figures who imagine
that changing America into Amsterdam will help industry bottom lines.

Maybe ten years ago there were some pretty prominent (at least, in bike
advocacy circles) prosecutions of cyclists who really needed to use
roadways for transportation to work. See
https://road.cc/content/news/130546-kentucky-cyclist-repeatedly-arrested-%E2%80%93-commuting-road
Despite pleas for legal assistance, the LAB pretended she didn't
exist. As I recall, she eventually had to move out of the area.

Another guy I've met was in a very similar situation in some New England
state. He was able to persist in his battle against the cops and finally
win. But again, LAB took no interest in preserving his right to the road.

And I'll note, neither of those cases involved bike facilities! The
battles were over fundamental ability to use the road at all!

The Ohio Bicycle Federation was able to modify Ohio law to say that bike
lanes, etc. cannot be mandatory. I don't know how many other states have
similar laws.

--
- Frank Krygowski

Rolf Mantel

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 12:00:33 PMFeb 5
to
Am 05.02.2024 um 17:30 schrieb Frank Krygowski:
> On 2/4/2024 5:48 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:
>>
>> That does look direct, though I assume much like my old cycleway do
>> need to
>> be reasonably close to start/end for it to be useful? Ie too far and not
>> worth it time wise at least...
>
> That's true. As a guess, any one fancy bike facility in a city will be
> within reach of just a couple percent of the population, most of whom
> would never use it anyway. And those projects easily reach millions of
> dollars in costs.

The German authorities plan "bicycle highways" on the order of magnitue
of €2 million per km, approx. $3 million per mile, which is considered
"appropriate" when you have plausible ridership of 1,500 or more per
work day and gets federal subsidies with 2,000 rides per workday.

One minimum standard is that the route built as a bicycle highway must
be at least 3 miles long and connect towns with city centers ideally not
more than 6 miles apart, to actually get stome usage.


sms

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 12:35:00 PMFeb 5
to
Frank is wrong of course™.

The bicycle facilities are in reach of most of the population. You don't
need to be on these facilities for your entire commute, you use regular
roads to reach the multi-use paths (MUPs). You can use roads with or
without bike lanes to reach these MUPs.

As this map <https://i.imgur.com/9cBXdQ1.png> shows, you can reach the
MUPs (green) via surface streets, they don't have to be within a few
meters of your house or apartment.

These facilities are heavily used by both commuting cyclists and for
recreation. Also, in this area, it would be rare if public transit were
faster than bicycling, and that's with a regular bike. For my wife's
commute, Google Maps shows: Driving: 20 minutes, Bicycling: 47 minutes,
Public Transit 72 minutes. With an eBike I think that bicycling would be
30-35 minutes.

Yes, these facilities do cost millions of dollars, but IMVAIO it's a
worthwhile use of tax money!

Remember, all the data proves that bicycle infrastructure increases
cycling rates.

Frank can learn the facts about bicycle infrastructure here:
<https://www.urban.org/urban-wire/why-us-cities-are-investing-safer-more-connected-cycling-infrastructure>.

--
“If you are not an expert on a subject, then your opinions about it
really do matter less than the opinions of experts. It's not
indoctrination nor elitism. It's just that you don't know as much as
they do about the subject.”—Tin Foil Awards

Roger Merriman

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Feb 5, 2024, 3:21:17 PMFeb 5
to
Frank Krygowski <frkr...@sbcglobal.net> wrote:
> On 2/4/2024 5:48 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:
>>
>> That does look direct, though I assume much like my old cycleway do need to
>> be reasonably close to start/end for it to be useful? Ie too far and not
>> worth it time wise at least...
>
> That's true. As a guess, any one fancy bike facility in a city will be
> within reach of just a couple percent of the population, most of whom
> would never use it anyway. And those projects easily reach millions of
> dollars in costs.
>
Certainly for cities as large as London (note your suburb would be inner
london I’m out past Petersburg in terms of distance) with number of cycling
routes which as time has gone on have had cycle infrastructure added to
them, people converge onto them. None of these are particularly expensive
certainly compared to junction upgrades.

Chiswick high road when completed ie Hounslow to Hammersmith which is a
good few miles is finishing Brentford and then on to Hounslow so far it’s 9
million, note that one tunnel (Silvertown) for cars only is likely to get
into the billions and likewise on the edge of london the Wisley M25
junction is being upgraded to many hundred’s of millions as clearly one
more lane will solve it…

> To achieve the glorious goals of really effective increases in bike mode
> share, with measurable benefits regarding reduced congestion, increased
> public health and reduced pollution, a city would need many dozens of
> such fancy corridors plus lots of luck. The cost would likely be
> hundreds of millions of dollars.

Certainly in London number of cycle infrastructure carries large volumes,
and at times ie peak times is higher than cars, which has a falling trend
even in outer london. Though the larger mode share is walking as London
grew by swallowing other towns and so on, so is quite walkable, I can walk
within a few mins to Bike shop/bakers/off licence/cafe’s train station and
bus stops and so on.
>
> Amsterdam was able to do that, but the Amsterdam voters who approved
> those efforts have greatly different attitudes and priorities than
> American voters. American cities are more likely to get half-ass
> approximations of good facilities, which do very little good and often
> make things worse.
>

I suspect that london will never have as many cycle lanes as Amsterdam but
continue to have low traffic neighbourhoods ie places with planters to
prevent though traffic ie rat running, and more substantial cycle
infrastructure on the routes into london.

Roger Merriman


Tom Kunich

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Feb 5, 2024, 3:41:30 PMFeb 5
to
When I became conscious from the concussion after two years I didn't know how to get anywhere. I wasn't allowed to drive and the only way to get anywhere was to use Google Maps. There was no place I had to go that Maps couldn't route me there the fastest way for a bicycle.

Roger Merriman

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Feb 5, 2024, 3:48:51 PMFeb 5
to
That doesn’t need to be either, can do both they aren’t mutually exclusive
by any means.

> Maybe ten years ago there were some pretty prominent (at least, in bike
> advocacy circles) prosecutions of cyclists who really needed to use
> roadways for transportation to work. See
> https://road.cc/content/news/130546-kentucky-cyclist-repeatedly-arrested-%E2%80%93-commuting-road
>
> Despite pleas for legal assistance, the LAB pretended she didn't
> exist. As I recall, she eventually had to move out of the area.
>
> Another guy I've met was in a very similar situation in some New England
> state. He was able to persist in his battle against the cops and finally
> win. But again, LAB took no interest in preserving his right to the road.
>
> And I'll note, neither of those cases involved bike facilities! The
> battles were over fundamental ability to use the road at all!
>
> The Ohio Bicycle Federation was able to modify Ohio law to say that bike
> lanes, etc. cannot be mandatory. I don't know how many other states have
> similar laws.
>
Roger Merriman


sms

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Feb 5, 2024, 4:51:37 PMFeb 5
to
On 2/5/2024 12:21 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:

<snip>

> Certainly for cities as large as London (note your suburb would be inner
> london I’m out past Petersburg in terms of distance) with number of cycling
> routes which as time has gone on have had cycle infrastructure added to
> them, people converge onto them. None of these are particularly expensive
> certainly compared to junction upgrades.

I recall when they finally completed one bicycle/pedestrian bridge over
a freeway in my city. Originally it was supposed to be a vehicle bridge
but no one on either side really wanted it because of the additional
motor vehicle traffic it would cause on quiet streets. Finally they
built a bicycle/pedestrian bridge
<http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3636/3423769405_958b7256ea.jpg>. Yes, it
cost "millions." But it is a pretty vital link for cyclists and it is
heavily used. I can think of a lot worse ways to spend tax money than to
improve transportation infrastructure.

Not sure why "he who must not be named" is so against increasing cycling
numbers by making it safer and more enjoyable.



Roger Merriman

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 6:26:09 PMFeb 5
to
I assume it’s ideological.

Roger Merriman

sms

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Feb 5, 2024, 7:37:28 PMFeb 5
to
On 2/5/2024 3:26 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:

<snip>

> I assume it’s ideological.

Perhaps. The John Forester ideology that has no interest in increasing
cycling numbers by following the approach of other countries in trying
to reduce motor vehicle traffic by encouraging more cycling by adding
infrastructure.

The ideology of "gosh darnit, bicycles need to be treated exactly the
same as motor vehicles and need to share the same roads. Any attempt to
separate bicycles from motor vehicles is not acceptable."

John B.

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Feb 5, 2024, 9:02:46 PMFeb 5
to
On Mon, 5 Feb 2024 16:37:22 -0800, sms <scharf...@geemail.com>
wrote:

>On 2/5/2024 3:26 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:
>
><snip>
>
>> I assume it’s ideological.
>
>Perhaps. The John Forester ideology that has no interest in increasing
>cycling numbers by following the approach of other countries in trying
>to reduce motor vehicle traffic by encouraging more cycling by adding
>infrastructure.
>
>The ideology of "gosh darnit, bicycles need to be treated exactly the
>same as motor vehicles and need to share the same roads. Any attempt to
>separate bicycles from motor vehicles is not acceptable."

But what is actually happening? Is auto traffic declining and bicycle
traffic increasing? Or is it more a matter of "Oh! It looks like a
nice day, I guess I'll ride my bike."? Or the alternate, "Goodness,
it's raining and cold, I'll take the car."

--
Cheers,

John B.

Frank Krygowski

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 10:21:08 PMFeb 5
to
On 2/5/2024 6:26 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:
> sms <scharf...@geemail.com> wrote:
>> On 2/5/2024 12:21 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:
>>
>> <snip>
>>
>>> Certainly for cities as large as London (note your suburb would be inner
>>> london I’m out past Petersburg in terms of distance) with number of cycling
>>> routes which as time has gone on have had cycle infrastructure added to
>>> them, people converge onto them. None of these are particularly expensive
>>> certainly compared to junction upgrades.
>>
>> I recall when they finally completed one bicycle/pedestrian bridge over
>> a freeway in my city. Originally it was supposed to be a vehicle bridge
>> but no one on either side really wanted it because of the additional
>> motor vehicle traffic it would cause on quiet streets. Finally they
>> built a bicycle/pedestrian bridge
>> <http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3636/3423769405_958b7256ea.jpg>. Yes, it
>> cost "millions." But it is a pretty vital link for cyclists and it is
>> heavily used. I can think of a lot worse ways to spend tax money than to
>> improve transportation infrastructure.

If a person is hugely devoted to bike infrastructure, of course they'll
say spending millions on a bike/ped bridge is a great idea. People like
that are in favor of almost any bike infrastructure, no matter the cost.

>> Not sure why "he who must not be named" is so against increasing cycling
>> numbers by making it safer and more enjoyable.
>>
> I assume it’s ideological.

First, I'm not against increasing cycling numbers. But I'm skeptical of
the value of most bike infrastructure based on several observations.

One is the inflated promises: "If we build it, they will come!"
promotions promise terrific increases in bike mode share, and with that,
significant decreases in auto use and congestion. AFAICT that almost
never happens. I've seen many, many cities with lots of bike lanes. I
see lots of bikes only very near some universities in some of those
cities, and empty bike lanes elsewhere. Bike mode share in U.S. cities
rarely exceeds 1%, no matter what promises were made.

Another reason is the sales techniques used to promote this stuff. The
number one talking point is "safety," as in "This will _finally_ give
people a safe place to ride!" That carries the implication that riding
ordinary streets is just too dangerous, which is absolutely false. By
putting that message out there, I think facilities proponents are
actually decreasing cycling. Why? Because they're making people believe
they should not ride on ordinary streets! And almost all streets in any
city will remain "ordinary" forever. You simply can't put bike
facilities everywhere.

A third reason is lousy design standards, as in "Any bike facility is a
good bike facility." I've seen some really crazy stuff built for bikes -
crazy enough that no cyclist I know is likely to use it. They've said so
in conversations I've overheard, with no prompting from me. And I've had
several friends injured on "nice safe" bike facilities, specifically
because of deficient designs. Based on people I know, the risk per mile
ridden is actually higher on these "innovative" facilities.

A fourth reason is the maintenance problem. When politicians push to get
bike lanes or bike trails installed, they figure their job is done,
because they have something to point to at reelection time. But it's not
as effective to point at an expensive small-scale sweeper vehicle, or
guys fixing pavement that only cyclists use; so that stuff gets little
or no funding. (The past week or two, we've had discussions about that
lack of maintenance.) Gravel-filled or snow-filled bike lanes are a well
known problem. So is broken glass, mud, fallen leaves and other debris.

A fifth reason is the reaction of motorists. Even in states or countries
where it's legal to leave a bike lane or ride on a road without one,
motorists assume you should never do that, and even some cops do the
same. Some motorist get downright aggressive about it. And I think
motorist education efforts to say "We built this for cyclists but they
don't have to use it" are very unlikely to exist, or succeed if they do
exist. Hell, within the past two years I had a woman driver slow down,
match my speed, blare her horn and yell at me to "get on that new
sidewalk! My tax dollars paid for it!" (Note: Sidewalk, not bike path!)

I can go on, but you get the idea. As a well-known bike advocate said,
"99 percent of bike lanes give the others a bad name." I think he's
exaggerating only slightly.

--
- Frank Krygowski

Frank Krygowski

unread,
Feb 5, 2024, 10:42:10 PMFeb 5
to
On 2/5/2024 3:48 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:
> Frank Krygowski <frkr...@sbcglobal.net> wrote:
>>
>> Here in the U.S., the League of American Bicyclists used to be very
>> dedicated to preserving cyclists' rights to the road. In the past 15
>> years or so they've switched to heavily promoting segregation. Some say
>> the change was pushed by prominent bike industry figures who imagine
>> that changing America into Amsterdam will help industry bottom lines.
>>
> That doesn’t need to be either, can do both they aren’t mutually exclusive
> by any means.

True, the two strategies don't need to be mutually exclusive. But from
what I've observed of LAW, they are.

--
- Frank Krygowski

Catrike Ryder

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Feb 6, 2024, 4:16:40 AMFeb 6
to
Here's a simple solution to your problem. If you're afraid to ride in
some "bicycle infrastructure," don't do it

Roger Merriman

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Feb 6, 2024, 5:17:13 AMFeb 6
to
In cities as large as London? Absolutely the trend for cars is down.
Driving into london even off peak hours is a monumentally bad idea! And
folks have options such as public transport which is the big hitters, and
yes cycling is growing if fairly low number of mode share.

Roger Merriman

Roger Merriman

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Feb 6, 2024, 5:18:22 AMFeb 6
to
These things are not set in stone and can be changed as well it’s politics.

Roger Merriman

Roger Merriman

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Feb 6, 2024, 7:22:15 AMFeb 6
to
On a big city one bike lane etc isn’t going to increase mode share london
is what 15 million or so, but certainly can have a huge increase in numbers
using said infrastructure.

> Another reason is the sales techniques used to promote this stuff. The
> number one talking point is "safety," as in "This will _finally_ give
> people a safe place to ride!" That carries the implication that riding
> ordinary streets is just too dangerous, which is absolutely false. By
> putting that message out there, I think facilities proponents are
> actually decreasing cycling. Why? Because they're making people believe
> they should not ride on ordinary streets! And almost all streets in any
> city will remain "ordinary" forever. You simply can't put bike
> facilities everywhere.

Don’t need to in general at least with london the infrastructure is
targeted at least now on main routes, ie generally big roads some of which
absolutely can be accident black spots, ie junctions one in the city of
London has had cars and taxies banned I believe for that reason.

It’s notable with good reason that it’s not just the numbers change but the
diversity of riders ie not just the fast and the brave like myself, who was
happy to take on Hammersmith multi lane roundabout.

And remember it’s not just about absolute risk to, folks experience ie some
roads can be guite grim.
>
> A third reason is lousy design standards, as in "Any bike facility is a
> good bike facility." I've seen some really crazy stuff built for bikes -
> crazy enough that no cyclist I know is likely to use it. They've said so
> in conversations I've overheard, with no prompting from me. And I've had
> several friends injured on "nice safe" bike facilities, specifically
> because of deficient designs. Based on people I know, the risk per mile
> ridden is actually higher on these "innovative" facilities.
>
A few cones isn’t really, it and note some such as the article you linked
are being highly selective.

TfL certainly say they have data that they do work but we are talking
proper segregation ie protected junctions and so on than some cones to keep
cars from wandering over the white line which isn’t totally pointless but
life changing it’s not.

> A fourth reason is the maintenance problem. When politicians push to get
> bike lanes or bike trails installed, they figure their job is done,
> because they have something to point to at reelection time. But it's not
> as effective to point at an expensive small-scale sweeper vehicle, or
> guys fixing pavement that only cyclists use; so that stuff gets little
> or no funding. (The past week or two, we've had discussions about that
> lack of maintenance.) Gravel-filled or snow-filled bike lanes are a well
> known problem. So is broken glass, mud, fallen leaves and other debris.
>
That is maintenance or rather if your town/city etc aren’t clearing it what
on earth are you paying your taxes for?

And London is far from a cycling utopia!

> A fifth reason is the reaction of motorists. Even in states or countries
> where it's legal to leave a bike lane or ride on a road without one,
> motorists assume you should never do that, and even some cops do the
> same. Some motorist get downright aggressive about it. And I think
> motorist education efforts to say "We built this for cyclists but they
> don't have to use it" are very unlikely to exist, or succeed if they do
> exist. Hell, within the past two years I had a woman driver slow down,
> match my speed, blare her horn and yell at me to "get on that new
> sidewalk! My tax dollars paid for it!" (Note: Sidewalk, not bike path!)
>
This sort of thing clearly does happen, though personally not something
that happens to me.

And yes car centric stuff will keep pushing, attempts to change the Highway
Code to suggest cyclists must use bike lanes was rapidly dropped due to
feedback.

> I can go on, but you get the idea. As a well-known bike advocate said,
> "99 percent of bike lanes give the others a bad name." I think he's
> exaggerating only slightly.
>
The world has changed need to try some more modern stuff and have a less
closed mind about these things.

Roger Merriman


AMuzi

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Feb 6, 2024, 9:04:10 AMFeb 6
to
+1 well done
--
Andrew Muzi
a...@yellowjersey.org
Open every day since 1 April, 1971

Tom Kunich

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Feb 6, 2024, 10:18:53 AMFeb 6
to
So would you rather ride on a road with or without a bike lane?

AMuzi

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Feb 6, 2024, 10:45:24 AMFeb 6
to
Without.
I'll ride a parallel street or alternate route instead.

Catrike Ryder

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Feb 6, 2024, 12:40:26 PMFeb 6
to
On Tue, 6 Feb 2024 09:45:20 -0600, AMuzi <a...@yellowjersey.org> wrote:

>On 2/6/2024 9:18 AM, Tom Kunich wrote:
>> On Monday, February 5, 2024 at 4:37:28?PM UTC-8, sms wrote:
>>> On 2/5/2024 3:26 PM, Roger Merriman wrote:
>>>
>>> <snip>
>>>> I assume it痴 ideological.
>>> Perhaps. The John Forester ideology that has no interest in increasing
>>> cycling numbers by following the approach of other countries in trying
>>> to reduce motor vehicle traffic by encouraging more cycling by adding
>>> infrastructure.
>>>
>>> The ideology of "gosh darnit, bicycles need to be treated exactly the
>>> same as motor vehicles and need to share the same roads. Any attempt to
>>> separate bicycles from motor vehicles is not acceptable."
>>> --
>>> 的f you are not an expert on a subject, then your opinions about it
>>> really do matter less than the opinions of experts. It's not
>>> indoctrination nor elitism. It's just that you don't know as much as
>>> they do about the subject.迫Tin Foil Awards
>> So would you rather ride on a road with or without a bike lane?
>
>Without.
>I'll ride a parallel street or alternate route instead.

Me too. I don't like cars and trucks whizzing past a couple of feet
away. It's worse on the Catrike where I set below most car's windows.

sms

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Feb 6, 2024, 12:56:03 PMFeb 6
to
On 2/5/2024 6:02 PM, John B. wrote:

<snip>

> But what is actually happening? Is auto traffic declining and bicycle
> traffic increasing?

Not sure about auto traffic declining, but bicycle traffic is absolutely
increasing in areas that have installed bicycle infrastructure.

sms

unread,
Feb 6, 2024, 12:58:58 PMFeb 6
to
On 2/6/2024 7:45 AM, AMuzi wrote:

<snip>

> Without.
> I'll ride a parallel street or alternate route instead.

Except often there are no parallel streets that get you where you need
to go, and often the alternate routes are freeways where you aren't
allowed (with a few exceptions.

AMuzi

unread,
Feb 6, 2024, 1:48:47 PMFeb 6
to
On 2/6/2024 11:58 AM, sms wrote:
> On 2/6/2024 7:45 AM, AMuzi wrote:
>
> <snip>
>
>> Without.
>> I'll ride a parallel street or alternate route instead.
>
> Except often there are no parallel streets that get you
> where you need to go, and often the alternate routes are
> freeways where you aren't allowed (with a few exceptions.
>

There's always an alternate. The world is my bicycle route.

Roger Merriman

unread,
Feb 6, 2024, 2:17:17 PMFeb 6
to
Doesn’t it rather depend? On my commute bike or MTB I’m more likely to
choose a bike lane even if it requires crossing etc, on the gravel bike I’m
more likely to keep on the road as I’m comparatively faster.

Roger Merriman

Frank Krygowski

unread,
Feb 6, 2024, 4:14:57 PMFeb 6
to
On 2/6/2024 7:22 AM, Roger Merriman wrote:
>
> The world has changed need to try some more modern stuff and have a less
> closed mind about these things.

Roger, you've made similar statements before - as if bike facility
problems have vanished recently.

The world has not changed. The remarks I made apply to the stuff that's
been installed in our area within the last year, and even more to some
local facilities that are less than five years old!

--
- Frank Krygowski

John B.

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Feb 6, 2024, 5:44:15 PMFeb 6
to
On Tue, 6 Feb 2024 09:55:59 -0800, sms <scharf...@geemail.com>
wrote:

>On 2/5/2024 6:02 PM, John B. wrote:
>
><snip>
>
>> But what is actually happening? Is auto traffic declining and bicycle
>> traffic increasing?
>
>Not sure about auto traffic declining, but bicycle traffic is absolutely
>increasing in areas that have installed bicycle infrastructure.

But, is this a "good" thing?

Given that a "road", the area over which wheel traffic can travel, is
of finite size is it good, in the sense of the traveling public, to
increase the number of vehicles using it?

Added to that, I have frequently heard bike paths described as making
the cyclist "feel safer", but is that a good thing? Given that in any
altercation between a bike and an auto one never sees the auto in the
ditch waiting the ambulance and the bicycle pedaling off with a dent
in the fender.

Is the cyclist actually 'safer"? Is it good for the cyclist to "feel"
safer?

--
Cheers,

John B.

Catrike Ryder

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Feb 6, 2024, 5:51:48 PMFeb 6
to
Good Grief. Nobody is going to make you ride where you don't want to
ride. You can keep on "taking the lane." Others have different
priorities, and apparently, there's enough of them to get the
facilities where they want to ride.

Frank Krygowski

unread,
Feb 6, 2024, 11:22:31 PMFeb 6
to
On 2/6/2024 12:55 PM, sms wrote:
> On 2/5/2024 6:02 PM, John B. wrote:
>
> <snip>
>
>> But what is actually happening? Is auto traffic declining and bicycle
>> traffic increasing?
>
> Not sure about auto traffic declining, but bicycle traffic is absolutely
> increasing in areas that have installed bicycle infrastructure.

Bicycle traffic may be increasing in _some_ areas that have installed
bicycle infrastructure. But it's not increasing in other areas that have
installed bicycle infrastructure.

Then there's the question of how much it's increasing. Raising an
American city's bike mode share from 0.3% to 0.4% counts as
"increasing," strictly speaking; but it's an increase from negligible to
negligible.

And BTW, those are typical values for U.S. cities. One advocacy
organization recently _bragged_ that NYC hit 1% bike mode share!

Spending a million dollars per mile to get a couple more people
occasionally riding bikes makes no sense.

--
- Frank Krygowski

Frank Krygowski

unread,
Feb 6, 2024, 11:24:09 PMFeb 6