Though it's still snowing here in Syosset on March 28th, rain and above-freezing temps have worn away most of the snow along my fair-weather bike route to work. I'm chomping at the bit to get out there again, but I'm noticing that something has changed over the winter.
This is only the second year the bike lane has been officially open. Last year, it seemed drivers were somewhat aware of its existence and paid at least some attention to it when making decisions about changing lanes, passing other vehicles, etc. I don't know if it's just that we're all sick of negotiating our ways around plowed snow and ice patches while driving, but it seems to me that the road I've been riding to and from work has become a free-for-all again. And to make things worse, the painted lines that denote the bike lane have faded very quickly and very noticeably, especially in certain key spots where the lane crosses auto traffic.
I won't let this stop me from returning to bike commuting this Spring, but I have to say that I have reservations I did not have last year at this time.