Friday, April 20, 2012

Bike Lanes in Thunder Bay

Yesterday, while riding north on Court Street toward home I dodged pot holes and crumbled asphalt and small dunes of road sand left from the winter. The bike lane was barely visible, completely unsafe for riding - so I was, for the most part, riding along it's outer edge. At times I had to swerve further into the road to avoid larger pot hole and dunes.

As I approached Bay Street I glanced behind me - no traffic, ahead of me were three cars driving south on the other side of the road, coming through the green light. I signalled that I was turning left on Bay, kept riding, checking behind me, ...two of the cars drove properly on their route. The third car took one look at me approaching the intersection, on the road, on a bike, with my arm out - and slammed on the breaks, stopping in the middle of the intersection.

Oh my dog. Really people? Who is causing a problem on the road in this story? Who isn't following the rules - the law? Who hasn't been to driving school, - what score did they get on their written test? Have they read a local newspaper or listened to the news? Pay attention?
I bet drivers like that are also the ones who spend their time complaining about Thunder Bay being a deadbeat town going nowhere, where it's hard to find good work, and the beer comes in jugs. Asshats.

I am so tired of hearing the complaints about the bike lanes, the ridiculous comments from Boshchoff calling them "dangerous" is outrageous. Cyclists on sidewalks? Even more ridiculous. He needs to get his head out of the sand. What is dangerous are drivers like that idiot who slammed on the breaks in the middle of an intersection because they didn't know what to do with a bike on the road.

Understanding a line on the road is not difficult - even new lines. I can not count how many times I watched cars drift in and out of bike lanes last year. Never saw a cyclist drift in and out of a bikelane...funny that.

I think - there are better ways to integrate cyclists in urban areas. I've been hearing on the news all morning that they're planning a revitalisation of Red River Road and Memorial Ave. (about time people..) Why not put a little extra effort into adding Recreational Trails along side the sidewalk. Sidewalk for walkers, RecTrails for riders, inline skates, runners. On the curb, off the road, line it with trees, make it pretty, attract people to it. To me it seems simple.
There could be a RecTrail continued along Oliver Road (from the Balmoral trail), on the north side, connecting pedestrians and cyclists *safely* to the hospital. If traffic lights were installed, to the University too.

Again, so simple.
Oh I bet "it costs too much"...or some such bullshit. Kind of like cleaning the streets in Thunder Bay. sigh

I really hope this bike lane business continues to make news, go national. Let's call these idiots on council out. I've had enough of them. 

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