Increase in Cycling Collides with Pedestrians and Traffic Laws

Before the 9th Ave. Cycletrack was built, the only bicycles on this street were piloted by couriers and delivery guys.

It is always great to see more bikes on the street, but the increase in the number of people riding bicycles brings changes to the cycling experience. This article from the BrooklynInk may be showing us the future of biking in Wisconsin cities, many of which have also seen increases in bicycling.

As New York City has aggressively began adding protected bike lanes, they have seen rapid growth in the number of people riding bikes. Where once the traffic conflicts were between cab drivers, delivery drivers and pedestrians, now people on bikes are getting a taste of NYC road rage, lawsuits, and tickets. The good news side of that coin is that even though the number of peope riding bikes in New York has quadrupled, serious accidents involving bicycles have stayed the same.

“As this flurry of legal activity demonstrates, the increase in bicycling in New York over the past decade has also ratcheted up the conflict between riders, pedestrians and motorists,” said Paul Steely White, executive director of Transportation Alternatives, a NYC group that advocates for the use of other forms of transportation than cars and the subway. At the same time, “The way the streets of the greatest city in the world are being used is changing fundamentally. People are beginning to understand that it is entirely possible — and really, very desirable — to lead a life without being tethered to an automobile.”


About Marti & Dave Fine

We are a mostly-retired couple living in Milwaukee; we cycle year-round using our city bikes to commute and run errands, only using the car when absolutely necessary. But we really enjoy touring; last winter we crossed the country on the Southern Tier, and this past spring we rode home from Key West. Some of our best memories are the Warmshowers hosts we met on our journeys, and the touring cyclists that we put up in our home during the summers.

2 thoughts on “Increase in Cycling Collides with Pedestrians and Traffic Laws

  1. This experience is the same in Portland OR, where cycling is increasing and the pressure is rising. As more Cyclists enter the mix ahead of solid bike routes and unclear laws and rules all players are being setup for failure. While Portland is doing a good job of getting caught up with the infrastructure there just is not enough education going on. Education not only for Cyclists, but for Motorist and Pedestrians as well. With so many new Cyclists hitting the road a broader and more aggressive education program needs to be implemented. This has to come not only from government but from the non-profits and volunteer groups. Cyclists need to become leaders in this education so we can begin to more effectively impact local and national policy for planning, and implementation of these plans. Taking the lead helps to ensure the right direction.

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