While I love the Baltimore Brew, that was a silly article. This article talks about the new bike boulevard (Guilford, N. of North ave) where lots of young students ride through low income neighborhoods. Occasionally problems ensue. BTW I love that the photo is of a scene where a ped
is killed by a driver
which has nothing to do with the article. ... back to the point.
You'll enjoy riding in B'more. There's a bustling cycling community. If you like riding with a zillion locals be sure to catch the Bike Party
. Super fun.
Easiest way to answer questions 1, 2 & 3 is to stick to N/S central city corridor: St. Paul, Maryland-Cathedral southbound and Park, Charles, Calvert northbound. Howard, north of North ave is fine at night, but trafficky daytime. Jones Falls trail is fine during the day IMO.
Cool stuff in town to bike to:
Federal Hill: climb up and take in the view.
Harbor promenade is open to bikes <10AM
Take Falls rd. north up to Druid Park for a nice cruise.
Hampden is fun and filled with good veggie restaurants.
... I couldn't help myself- I'm a chronic mapper: http://ridewithgps.com/routes/3301505
This has the above locations, plus "the block", MICA, Lexington Market and Camden Yards.
Export or copy this route to your account in the next couple weeks. I like to clean out un-needed routes from my account.