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Worst city for cycling?

Old 07-17-16, 08:13 PM
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Worst city for cycling?

I started cycling in San Antonio, TX. There were some hills just outside the city and undeveloped areas near me. Now, I live near Boulder, CO and am in cycling heaven. My wife would love to live in Dallas, TX. It's where I grew up. I think I would quit cycling if I lived there. Flat. Flat. Huge city. No low traffic areas. I think it would be terrible.

Where are the worst places for cycling?
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Old 07-18-16, 12:07 AM
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Miami has to be one of the worst...
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Old 07-18-16, 02:04 AM
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Worst for me was the rural Texas town where I used to live, just north of Fort Worth. Drivers would deliberately try to run you off the road, unless it was a kid on a tricycle or Big Wheel. It was always 20somthing rednecks in pickup trucks, hooting and grunting out the windows like they're reenacting the final scene in Easy Rider. I even knew some of 'em. When I'd see them later I'd say "You know you nearly ran me down the other day." They'd say "Oh, that was you? If I'd known it was you I wouldn't have done that." As if it's okay to run down perfect strangers. They were jerks in high school and jerks in real life, between stints in the pokey for DWI, possession, burglary, and fussin' and feudin' like rednecks.

But that was years ago. Fort Worth has developed into a remarkably bicycle friendly place.

Of my various duty stations when I was in the Navy and bike commuted in the 1970s-'80s, I'd guess Washington DC was the worst, although it wasn't nearly as bad as my former rural Texas town. But I had a lot of close calls, near misses, and at least two hits in traffic around DC, in just one year stationed there.

SoCal was great for cyclists at the time, San Diego, Oceanside and surroundings. No idea what it's like now.
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Old 07-18-16, 04:05 AM
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I'm from Euless, I would literally ride around DFW airport and it does suck for cycling though the area I lived in was okay. I would do laps on the 360 north service roads. The worst thing is having to come to a halt for red lights every few minutes but that's just the city. City life sucks. I'm in the country now so I'm good but it looks like things will improve in the metroplex.

A 64-Mile Bike 'Superhighway' Will Connect Fort Worth To Dallas | KERA News
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Old 07-18-16, 05:11 AM
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When I lived in Atlanta, before I retired, it was the worst city for cycling IMHO.
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Old 07-18-16, 05:35 AM
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Just from the way the local drive, I'd bet that Boston is a bad place to ride.
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Old 07-18-16, 06:02 AM
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2 months ago, I did a 94 mile ride around NYC and was impressed with all the planned bike routes, maps, bike wat markings, etc.

It's no wonder that so many people make use of the bike lanes. It may not be the best, but I'm sure that it ranks among the best. I always felt safe and shielded from traffic, which let me focus on the ride.

I have no idea which is the worst and glad it's not near me.
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Old 07-18-16, 06:59 AM
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Fallujah, Iraq?
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Old 07-18-16, 07:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Lazyass
I'm from Euless, I would literally ride around DFW airport and it does suck for cycling though the area I lived in was okay. I would do laps on the 360 north service roads. The worst thing is having to come to a halt for red lights every few minutes but that's just the city. City life sucks. I'm in the country now so I'm good but it looks like things will improve in the metroplex.

A 64-Mile Bike 'Superhighway' Will Connect Fort Worth To Dallas | KERA News
I lived in Euless for 16 years working out at DFW. Thats where I picked up cycling in a big way. Rode around DFW and points east a lot. That area has built up. But just north of Cheek Sparger on the 121 service road is where I got hit from behind by a 3/4 ton GMC. I live in Denver now and this entire state is much more cyclist friendly.
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Old 07-18-16, 07:03 AM
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Originally Posted by AlexCyclistRoch
Just from the way the local drive, I'd bet that Boston is a bad place to ride.
Hey, I resemble that remark.

In response to this Living Car Free Forum, “What is it like where you are” (in Boston, if you can't guess).

Originally Posted by Jim from Boston
…Personally the only weather I don’t like to ride in is rain, and no rain would be a desert. That said, I really like riding in all seasons, even winter.So my near perfect weather would present the best of all seasons, without the extremes, and I already live here. Nice, albeit short Spring with beautiful blossoms and that first few weeks of relief from Winter; glorious summer; cool crispy Autumn with colorful foliage; and even a bracing, and challenging Winter, but not one impossible to ride in…
Originally Posted by Jim from Boston

Humbly, if Bike Forums ever had a Best Commute Award, I would be a frontrunner...through one of America’s most charming, interesting, and historic metropolises on residential and light commercial roads (and partially on a bikepath in a park)…during all four (pleasant to tolerable) seasons

Not to brag, but to illustrate the possibilities.
Boston gets its reputation from the narrow, busy, crazy-quilt roads downtown where most out-of-towners visit, not a great place to drive or cycle, and best traversed by foot or subway, and especially pleasant by foot.

Originally Posted by Stun
My experience is that people drive differently in every city and treat cyclists very differently. The best advice often comes from cyclists that live the closest to you ...The exception here would also be Jim from Boston--anyone that can successfully commute around Boston has my full respect and probably knows how to deal with about every intersection imaginable!











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Old 07-18-16, 08:26 AM
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As a descendant of a 5th generation Philadelphian, I would have to admit that Philly is also an awful place for cyclists. Narrow streets, some in "Belgian block", and don't forget the streetcar tracks....
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Old 07-18-16, 11:43 AM
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Toronto, Canada.
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Old 07-18-16, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by AlexCyclistRoch
As a descendant of a 5th generation Philadelphian, I would have to admit that Philly is also an awful place for cyclists. Narrow streets, some in "Belgian block", and don't forget the streetcar tracks....
Narrow streets in urban areas make lousy cycling. I used to cycle in Los Angeles. Very congested. But lots of wide streets with shoulders so it was quite tolerable.
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Old 07-18-16, 01:30 PM
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Old 07-18-16, 01:34 PM
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Originally Posted by indyfabz
Fallujah, Iraq?
I was in Pristina, Kosovo, I can't say between the APCs trying to get around ox carts on roads barely big enough for compact hatchbacks that I would have a lot of enjoyment cycling.
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Old 07-18-16, 03:26 PM
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Edmonton, Canada - depending on the route.

If you can make it through the river valley to your destination, then it's top notch.

Anywhere else in the city - between the road conditions, incomprehension of driving rules and regulations by most motorists, and 'burtans in pickup trucks spewing diesel by revving the engine as they drive by... not recommended.
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Old 07-18-16, 03:30 PM
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Why are you even asking about the worst? Ask about the best so you know where you might move. The list of bad places is endless. And does your wife really dislike Boulder? It sounds great to me.
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Old 07-18-16, 04:25 PM
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Miami is terrible. Featureless strip mall landscape, terrible drivers, no shoulders anywhere, blast furnace heat, no cycling culture.

Chicago's surprisingly good for cycling. It's flat but there are lots of great routes in the area, a strong scene and an increasingly bike-friendly government. I like it here.
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Old 07-18-16, 06:10 PM
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Colorado Springs is very nice for cycling...nicer than Boulder imho.
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Old 07-18-16, 08:01 PM
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"Narrow streets, some in "Belgian block", and don't forget the streetcar tracks..."
Fort Worth has some historically preserved brick streets and some small patches of brick between paved roads. Lots of railroad tracks crossing streets, although they've sorta paved across some discontinued tracks. Even the MUP in the city parks have some tricky miniature RR track crossings, often at angles to approach.

While I see some folks riding road bikes with super skinny tires, I'm more comfortable with wider tires. Helps when negotiating bricks, ruts and other wheel-grabbers at odd angles. Sometimes those things sneak up on us and we may not have the option to approach at a perpendicular.
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Old 07-19-16, 05:36 AM
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Worst city for cycling?

Originally Posted by noglider
Why are you even asking about the worst? Ask about the best so you know where you might move. The list of bad places is endless…
FYA, earlier this year I started two threads with the intent of getting descriptions of the cycling scene in various cities, intended for a visitor or newly located resident: On the Touring Forum, "Tell me About Cycling in…," and a companion thread on Fifty-Plus, "Tell me About Cycling in Your City." Not necessarily describing the best or worst, but at least candid descriptions by those who know them well.

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Old 07-19-16, 05:52 AM
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Any city with lots of traffic is the worst.
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Old 07-19-16, 10:27 AM
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Originally Posted by prj71
Any city with lots of traffic is the worst.
You're right in a way, but you're wrong in some other ways. Traffic in NYC is insane. The density keeps speeds low, for the most part. The many cyclists keep motorists reminded of the fact that we are there and we're not going away. Lately, I don't get honked at, and many motorists wait for me when I need them to. It's not a relaxing place to ride, but it is very far from the worst, and you might argue that traffic here is the worst in the US, at least by some measures.
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Old 07-19-16, 01:56 PM
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Originally Posted by P_M
Edmonton, Canada - depending on the route.

If you can make it through the river valley to your destination, then it's top notch.

Anywhere else in the city - between the road conditions, incomprehension of driving rules and regulations by most motorists, and 'burtans in pickup trucks spewing diesel by revving the engine as they drive by... not recommended.
Agree the river valley trails are extensive and top notch, but I ride a lot on the streets as well and, in my experience, its not half bad. Matter of fact, I'm impressed by how often motorists stop to wave me across intersections even when they have the right of way.
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Old 07-19-16, 03:48 PM
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Originally Posted by Liz33
Miami has to be one of the worst...
Originally Posted by Hiro11
Miami is terrible. Featureless strip mall landscape, terrible drivers, no shoulders anywhere, blast furnace heat, no cycling culture.
I grew up in Miami (cycling); the only thing I miss is the Cuban food...
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