Yesterday, social media was filled with crazy pictures of Colorado’s hail storm, which arrived just a few hours after a Denver Post missive asking whether bike lanes on major thoroughfares will cause strife. It’s not just that the bike lane has swallowed a lane of traffic, but that it’s entirely impractical.
Colorado may have 300-plus days of sunshine per year; however, we also have approximately 150 potential days of snow, if you just count November through March. Of course, yesterday was May, so there may be even more days of possible
snow hail. What are bike riders supposed to do on days like yesterday? A day, which by the way, rendered an entire lane of traffic unusable to anyone – cars can’t use it and bikes won’t use it. If Colorado was warm nearly all year round like California, eating an entire lane of traffic might make sense.
Even worse, according to the article, nobody uses the bike lane:
“In September and October, the pilot’s first two months, city counts showed that five or six dozen cyclists a day used the six-block bikeway in either direction.”
So, we spent hundreds of thousands of dollars for 60 people to ride their bike to work? Unreal. And, September and October are largely lovely months for weather. It’s tough to imagine the same 60 to 70 riders continuing through December. Then, there’s this ridiculous statement from an academic:
“Schroeppel also noted that large numbers of the poor, the elderly, young people and those with impairments don’t drive. They could use better, more reliable alternatives to get around.”
Call us crazy, but if someone is too old or too impaired to drive, surely they are not riding a bicycle.
While encouraging riding a bike to work may sound like a feel-good project, it isn’t practical for the lack of density in the Denver metro area nor the unpredictable weather we experience here.