Thursday, June 21, 2007

The Plan (finally)

Pittsburgh just opened its first real bike lane that actually goes
somewhere. Beechwood Blvd. has had a "bike lane" for many, many years but it doesn't go anywhere, just sort of a half-loop near Frick Park. And while a bike lane such as they have now through East Liberty is supposed to enhance safety, before the paint was even dry I heard of an SUV cutting off a cyclist who was riding in the lane. (And threw in an obscene gesture just for fun.)

The article at the Pop City website has something at the end of it
mentioning that "the City will hire a full-time bike-ped coordinator, who will oversee Pittsburgh's Pedestrian Improvement and Bicycling Plans, and advise officials on pedestrian and cycling needs as they relate to infrastructure projects." The thing is, this job was set out in the City's Bicycle Plan published in 1999 and the position has gone unfilled since then, even through the supposedly bicycle friendly Murphy administration.

While I am very glad that something is happening finally, there is still a long way to go to make Pittsburgh safe for bicycles and begin changing the City's transportation habits. And a seven year gap between the plan and the implementation of a key element of that plan does not give me a lot of confidence in the forward momentum.

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