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OK, it's time to VOTE: Bike Lanes or Not

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View Poll Results: Which statement(s) represent your position bike lanes?
The more bike lanes, the better (even on residential streets).
42.25%
The fewer bike lanes, the better (even on freeways).
7.51%
BLs are good on high volume/high speed roads with few intersections and driveways.
44.60%
The fewer bike lanes the better, but they are okay on freeways.
10.33%
Bike lanes are good or at least a necessary evil because they are the only way we can get politicians to eliminate parking on some streets.
6.10%
Bike lanes are good or at least a necessary evil because they are the only way we can prevent the politicians from adding more lanes to certain roadways and thus losing the wide outside curb lane.
11.27%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 213. You may not vote on this poll

OK, it's time to VOTE: Bike Lanes or Not

Old 01-20-05, 06:17 PM
  #1  
BikeFor
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Make it short, sweet and quick! But feel free to explain AFTER the initial yes or no. I am really curious about the consensus of your esteemed readership (I'm not trying to be funny here). Here's hoping for a huge turnout.

Last edited by BikeFor; 01-20-05 at 06:58 PM. Reason: Bike Lanes or not? That's the question.
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Old 01-20-05, 06:21 PM
  #2  
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Yes, geting run over is not fun.
~X-Zen~
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Old 01-20-05, 06:23 PM
  #3  
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Yes, I just feel like my fingers are safer with a bike lane.
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Old 01-20-05, 06:27 PM
  #4  
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No is my first reaction. For me personally, they are of little benefit and you have the disadvantages that are often cited (in the car door zone, a place for debris to collect, ambiguous and dangerous situations at intersections). However, my opinion is not a particularly strong one. I don't think I would ever lobby for bike lanes, but neither would would I lobby against them since some people feel more comfortable in a bike lane and I can ride in the regular lane when necessary as I did last night when the bike lane had snow and gravel pushed over by the cars and plows.
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Old 01-20-05, 06:37 PM
  #5  
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Originally Posted by Simplebiker
No is my first reaction. For me personally, they are of little benefit and you have the disadvantages that are often cited (in the car door zone, a place for debris to collect, ambiguous and dangerous situations at intersections). However, my opinion is not a particularly strong one. I don't think I would ever lobby for bike lanes, but neither would would I lobby against them since some people feel more comfortable in a bike lane and I can ride in the regular lane when necessary as I did last night when the bike lane had snow and gravel pushed over by the cars and plows.
Would you like 2000lb cars wizzing past you at 30+mph
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Old 01-20-05, 06:46 PM
  #6  
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NO
Bike lanes may solve a few problems, but I think they create more than they solve. Expecially at intersections.

Education of the public in the rules of vehicular cycling (riders & cagers alike) is the real solution.
 
Old 01-20-05, 06:51 PM
  #7  
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Originally Posted by Serge *******
Uh, what exactly is the question and where do we vote?

I think you meant to submit a poll but you didn't?

(I'll delete this post once this is fixed).
I would like to accomodate Serge, but I really don't know how to change this now. But, do you really mean you don't follow what I'm asking, or are you just taking issue with my use of faulty semantics? If you do follow, then please chime in. Actually, on further investigation, I'm really not sure if there is a way to change the title. If there is, it's not too apparent to me. But, I'll change it for you here: BIKE LANES OR NOT? THAT'S THE QUESTION. Hope that helped.

Last edited by BikeFor; 01-20-05 at 07:13 PM.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:14 PM
  #8  
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XzEn54321 - have you read this thread?

https://www.bikeforums.net/commuting/82599-anti-bike-lane-people-what-s-wrong-picture.html

I know it's long, but it has some great stuff in it about bike lanes.

I'm generally opposed to bike lanes, except on freeways. Here's my reasoning:
  1. Bike lane proponents who think that bike lanes give cyclists more room confuse lane width with bike lanes. Consider any road with a bike lane. Removal of the bike lane means removal of the stripe - the pavement remains. Such a "wide outside curb lane" is far preferable to a narrower main lane and a bike lane within the same space delineated with a painted stripe for the reasons that follow.
  2. All but the best-designed bike lanes make cycling less safe. Even the rare well-designed bike lanes don't make cycling safer. The government has been forced to stop claiming bike lanes make cycling safer years ago, but the notion that they do remains (unfortunately, even many cyclists still believe it, and, so, demand more and more of them).
  3. Experienced/trained/educated cyclists don't need bike lanes, for they know to ignore them and choose their lane positioning based on all kinds of conditions. Sometimes that may put them in the bike lane, sometimes it doesn't, but the existence of the bike lane stripe makes no difference. In other words, you ignore the stripe and treat it like a wide outside curb lane.
  4. Novice cyclists, motorists and law enforcement officers are mislead by bike lanes into thinking that proper and appropriate lateral lane positioning for a cyclist is a static issue, when, in fact, it is a constant dynamic process. The cyclist riding in traffic needs to be constantly evaluating current conditions and making his lateral lane position decisions accordingly. Factors to consider include: speed and volume of traffic, the cyclist's speed, ambient light, weather, road conditions, cyclist's destination, etc. etc. These factors are constantly changing. The idea that a static facility like a bike lane could delineate a cyclist's proper and appropriate position is wrong and dangerous in and of itself. The very existence of each and every bike lane screams this misguided lesson.
  5. Novice cyclists, motorists and law enforcement officers improperly trained by the very existence of bike lanes on roads with bike lanes that proper and appropriate lateral lane positioning for a cyclist can be delineated in a static fashion is then applied even on roads where there are no bike lanes, where novice cyclists think they are required to keep to the right regardless of the conditions, and where motorists and police officers expect them to.
  6. Motorist travel sweeps puncture and crash causing debris off the roadway. When no cyclists are present on the roadway, motorists tend to travel, at least sometimes, even near the right edge, thus sweeping that area as well. Unless, of course, if a bike lane stripe is present, in which all the debris is swept into... the bike lane. In other words, bike lanes suck.

Last edited by Serge Issakov; 01-21-05 at 11:10 AM.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:16 PM
  #9  
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No.
We have bike lanes on most major routes now but that doesn't keep the 3000 pound cars & 10,000+ pound trucks from "wizzing" past at 40 to 50 MPH! Installing the bike lane meant losing 1 traffic lane from the main Westbound route into downtown. Previously traffic would slow down & pass with caution but bike lanes seemed to encourage traffic to just roar past. Don
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Old 01-20-05, 07:18 PM
  #10  
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Originally Posted by XzEn54321
Yes, geting run over is not fun.
No, getting run over is not fun.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:24 PM
  #11  
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XzEn54321 - do you understand bostontrevor's response? He's voting NO for the same reason that you're voting YES: because "getting run over is not fun". (very clever, BT).

In other words, you seem to believe that bike lanes make it less likely for a cyclist to get run over, while BT believes bike lanes make it more likely for cyclists to be run over. I of course agree with BT. In essence, that's what the "Hey anti-bike laners... what's wrong with the picture" thread is all about, and I really don't want to rehash it here. I do hope to bring it to your attention however.

Many cyclists are unaware of all the arguments other cyclists have against bike lanes, and that thread covers many of them.

Serge
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Old 01-20-05, 07:28 PM
  #12  
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Originally Posted by Serge *******
It's not just the title. There are (at least) two types of threads: regular and poll. A poll thread allows you to vote and tallies the votes automatically. I expected this thread to be a poll type.
Man, I really didn't know about any of this, I guess I'll be counting "by hand" now. I'll be more careful next time.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:40 PM
  #13  
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Originally Posted by Serge *******
XzEn54321 - have you read this thread?

https://www.bikeforums.net/showthread.php?t=82599

I know it's long, but it has some great stuff in it about bike lanes.

Anyway, it appears we're not having a real poll thread on this. So, for the record, my vote is:
NO


My reasoning is:
  1. Bike lane proponents who think that bike lanes give cyclists more room confuse lane width with bike lanes. Consider any road with a bike lane. Removal of the bike lane means removal of the stripe - the pavement remains. Such a "wide outside curb lane" is far preferable to a narrower main lane and a bike lane within the same space delineated with a painted stripe for the reasons that follow.
  2. All but the best-designed bike lanes make cycling less safe. Even the rare well-designed bike lanes don't make cycling safer. The government has been forced to stop claiming bike lanes make cycling safer years ago, but the notion that they do remains (unfortunately, even many cyclists still believe it, and, so, demand more and more of them).
  3. Experienced/trained/educated cyclists don't need bike lanes, for they know to ignore them and choose their lane positioning based on all kinds of conditions. Sometimes that may put them in the bike lane, sometimes it doesn't, but the existence of the bike lane stripe makes no difference. In other words, you ignore the stripe and treat it like a wide outside curb lane.
  4. Novice cyclists, motorists and law enforcement officers are mislead by bike lanes into thinking that proper and appropriate lateral lane positioning for a cyclist is a static issue, when, in fact, it is a constant dynamic process. The cyclist riding in traffic needs to be constantly evaluating current conditions and making his lateral lane position decisions accordingly. Factors to consider include: speed and volume of traffic, the cyclist's speed, ambient light, weather, road conditions, cyclist's destination, etc. etc. These factors are constantly changing. The idea that a static facility like a bike lane could delineate a cyclist's proper and appropriate position is wrong and dangerous in and of itself. The very existence of each and every bike lane screams this misguided lesson.
  5. Novice cyclists, motorists and law enforcement officers improperly trained by the very existence of bike lanes on roads with bike lanes that proper and appropriate lateral lane positioning for a cyclist can be delineated in a static fashion is then applied even on roads where there are no bike lanes, where novice cyclists think they are required to keep to the right regardless of the conditions, and where motorists and police officers expect them to.
  6. Motorist travel sweeps puncture and crash causing debris off the roadway. When no cyclists are present on the roadway, motorists tend to travel, at least sometimes, even near the right edge, thus sweeping that area as well. Unless, of course, if a bike lane stripe is present, in which all the debris is swept into... the bike lane. In other words, bike lanes suck.
7.Paint on pavement is slicker than pavement, especially when it is wet or icy.



NO
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Old 01-20-05, 07:40 PM
  #14  
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I support bike lanes just because they will get more people cycling. And also everyone who is driving with learn that cyclists are on the roads and are there legally. Go to a town with bike lanes and cyclists get a lot more respect.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:42 PM
  #15  
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Yes of course. Having a dedicated space for bikers provides a visual barrier to autos and an additional 5-6 feet of traveling sapce for bikers. Its a no brainer.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:46 PM
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Yes, but only if they do not run right where cars can open their doors, people bother to plow them, and they arn't the most rutted, nasty part of the road.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:48 PM
  #17  
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Originally Posted by XzEn54321
Would you like 2000lb cars wizzing past you at 30+mph
I'm kind of neutral to the idea. 2000lb cars wiz by me at 30+ mph all the time. It is part of sharing the public roads. It would be nice if everyone road a bike, but that's not going to happen any time soon. Car drivers are generally more predictable than the runners and strollers who share the bike lane with me.

Edited to add: Someone else's post reminded of one other point. Cars wiz past me at 30+ mph in the bike lane as well. Actually, sometimes a bike lane encourages them to wiz past at speed when no bike lane will encourage some caution.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:56 PM
  #18  
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Originally Posted by BeTheChange
I support bike lanes just because they will get more people cycling. And also everyone who is driving with learn that cyclists are on the roads and are there legally. Go to a town with bike lanes and cyclists get a lot more respect.
Because a dead cyclist is better than a living motorist any day. Progress through body count.
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Old 01-20-05, 07:58 PM
  #19  
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I would vote in Serge's poll but there isn't an option I agree with.
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Old 01-20-05, 08:04 PM
  #20  
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I don't hate bike lanes. I think they're an unnecessary expenditure as appropriate bike lanes are striped where the lane is already shareable, but I won't oppose them in those cases if it gets more people riding.

I do hate badly designed bike lanes which is most. They range from a little more to WAY more dangerous than riding in the street while trading on the misperception that they're safe, especially for novice cyclists.

It seems a little cynical to promote cycling at the cost of cyclists' safety.
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Old 01-20-05, 08:11 PM
  #21  
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Originally Posted by sbhikes
I would vote in Serge's poll but there isn't an option I agree with.
Sbhikes, since you already made it over, please let me know if you liked bike lanes, in general, or not, or that they are irrelevant altogether. Again, if you just checked off on one of the aforementioned three options, I would be tickled to death.

Last edited by BikeFor; 01-21-05 at 12:00 AM.
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Old 01-20-05, 08:16 PM
  #22  
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sbhikes - just pick the one that is closest to your position, and clarify in a post. Okay?
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Old 01-20-05, 08:30 PM
  #23  
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Bike lanes? Well, I don't really know. I haven't seen one in a long time now.

Probably not though, I have had much better rides when I go a bit into the lane as opposed to the shoulder. The last bike lane I rode in (different city, about a year ago) I was passed once by a truck moving at 45ish mph and close enough I could stick out my pinky and touch it.

Didn't like that much.
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Old 01-20-05, 08:57 PM
  #24  
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I've long felt it's a real waste not to allow cyclists on freeways where there's usually an 8-10 ft unused shoulder...good sightlines, good grading, good paving, no dangerous crosstraffic, even the occasional (or not so occasional) encouraging airblast boost from passing semis.... Of course, not every multi-lane is amenable, but most of the rural interstates seem OK...
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Old 01-20-05, 09:05 PM
  #25  
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Sometimes it's hard to visualize the dangerous areas, since here in California, at least in my area, most bike lanes are fairly wide. We do have some where cars are parked next tot he curb, but the lane is then just about 6 feet out from the cars. We do have the exception written into the law that says we can go outside the bike lane if it's dangerous. I believe we can also ride on the freeways unless it's specifically marked. The intersections seem kind of crazy though. When they paint the lanes, I don't think they end them far enough back from the intersection for us to maneuver properly if we stay in them.
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