Care Must Be Taken Not to Add to Tension Between Motorists and Cyclists

By EGP News

As more people take up cycling, the stress of meeting their roadway needs versus the need for more space to accommodate cars is causing tension in some areas of Los Angeles.

York Boulevard in Highland is a good example of where the addition of bike lanes at the expense of autos has some people fuming.

We recognize that the goal of dedicated bike lanes is to give cyclists more room to travel safely, and to encourage more people to get out of their cars and take up what city and health officials hope will become a healthier and more common form of transportation. But a number of Highland Park residents have told us that they feel the addition of bike lanes to York Boulevard is stressing them out, especially during peak traffic hours.

Rather than promoting a congenial sharing of the roadway, the addition of bike lanes, which for the most part are empty as drivers wait in a long line of cars attempting to travel down the street, is adding to the tension between drivers and cyclists, residents have told us.

It just creates more frustration on the part of drivers that we fear could in the future be a danger to a person on a bike.

We are not at all opposed to cyclists using our streets, but we do wish that the traffic experts charged with coming up with the city’s bike plans would engage more drivers of automobiles in the process. They need a sensible plan as to how to mitigate auto traffic buildup caused when lanes for cars are taken away and given to cyclists.

While we are not traffic experts, we do believe that our traffic officials must be able to spot trouble-making situations, especially since cyclists are the most vulnerable of the two sides.

Public hearings are fine and needed, but nothing clears the air like creative solutions that provide for the safety of everyone using our streets.

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April 4, 2013  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

Comments

2 Responses to “Care Must Be Taken Not to Add to Tension Between Motorists and Cyclists”

  1. Kenny on April 5th, 2013 12:30 pm

    We recognize that the goal of automobiles is to give people the ability to travel long distances quickly, and to encourage people to patronize out-of-town businesses because they don’t like the offerings in their neighborhood. But a number of residents have told us that the presence of high-speed pieces of metal is stressing them out, especially during peak traffic hours. Rather than promoting a congenial sharing of the roadway, the addition of automobiles, which for the most part are empty as drivers are inside their homes or at work or shopping, is adding to the tension between people and machines.

    We are not at all opposed to automobiles using our streets, but we do wish that the traffic experts charged with coming up with the city’s roadway plans would engage more victims of injury in the process. They need a sensible plan as to how to mitigate injury and delays as crosswalks present orange hands to humans while giving free rein to out-of-town commuters.

  2. LABiker on April 5th, 2013 2:36 pm

    Do you know what also makes drivers feel stress? Having to go around a bicyclist pedaling in the traffic lanes. At least with a bike lane, everyone knows where they belong on the road. I ride on York Blvd. most days as part of my bike commute between Pasadena and East Hollywood. I am very thankful for the dedicated bike lane along this route. The idea is to encourage more people to get out of their cars and use bikes to get around. We would have less congestion, less pollution, less hazards on the road, less rage, and less stress. Try leaving the car at home some days. Use the bike lanes. You’ll see whey they are a good thing for the city.

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