An Amusement & Diversion for The Genteel Cyclist. Daily.

Friday, May 4, 2007

Separate but equal? Ciclovia is the new shariah


The Christian Scientist Monitor reports that more and more U.S. cities are banning cars from the streets:


San Francisco - Every Saturday starting May 26 through Sept. 30, bicyclists, joggers, and pedestrians will have free rein on almost a mile of John F. Kennedy Drive, the main drag through Golden Gate Park. The usual denizens of the road – autos – will be banned, detoured elsewhere.

Vehicles are already prohibited in parts of the park on Sundays, and the decision to "go carless" on Saturdays as well concludes a heated seven-year debate. In the end, arguments that such road closures promote family activities, more active lifestyles, and tighter-knit communities carried the day.

The auto's demotion at Golden Gate Park follows dozens of similar moves in at least 20 American cities in the past three years. It's a trend that is gaining ground rapidly in the US, say urban planners.


City officials in Bogota, Colombia pioneered this practice, where it is known as "ciclovia." Incidentally, it is a great way to:

  • Promote the idea that cycling is unsafe unless no cars are involved.

  • Help justify other instances of vehicular segregation that aren't necessarily favorable to cyclists.

  • Turn invigoratingly car-choked roadways into nightmare MUPs filled with joggers, roller-skaters, baby strollers, and tiny dogs.

  • 6 comments:

    Jerry Case said...

    Well, I dunno about that. Giving Central Park or GOlden Gate Park over to the bikes and rollerbladers for one day per week isn't EXACTLY like requiring Burkas and chopping off the hands of thieves.

    Close, but not exactly the same.

    pc said...

    Easy for you to say. Doesn't Minneapolis have the nation's largest MUP network? It's also not just about the bikes; it's about enjoying a park without having to deal with noisy, stinky cars.

    Pinchie said...

    that may be true... but Roid is reporting from San Francisco.

    Matt said...

    I always loved that road sign--Low Flying Motorcycles

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