An Amusement & Diversion for The Genteel Cyclist. Daily.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

Thinking inside the box

In some rarified circles, there is a conversation about whether bike lanes are actually a bad thing. The argument goes like this: It gives motorists the misguided impression that bikes don't belong anywhere else on the road. (And if there is no bike lane, then bikes aren't legal on that street. D'oh!)

But in some cities, they're beginning to paint "bike boxes" -- sort of like a batters' box at every intersection, which is intended only for bicycles. It's painted at the head of the intersection, in front of the crosswalk, and it looks like this:




Which seems to us like a big fat invitation that says "park here and provoke a confrontation with angry cyclists." Our view: self-righteousness among cyclists is already at an all-time high. It's awesome that progressive cities are bending over backward to accomodate bikes, but there's a difference between accomodating and coddling. Frankly, we'd rather see more bike racks--and city ordinances making it illegal to forbid bikes from being brought into buildings. (This is actually a huge problem that no one ever talks about.)

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