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@CrazyJayne – I appreciate you supporting my ticket to SeeClickFix. However, I really don’t like it when I report here and someone jumps in to rant about the ‘bad bicyclists trying to hit me’. As we both have already agreed, the issue-at-hand are the drivers going at unsafe speeds and honking their horns when they are ever so briefly inconvenienced.
For a moment, please imagine yourself on a bicycle and think about the alternative if you live on Tremont and need to get home from, say, Central Square. There is no safe bike path AT ALL. Even when you approach our block, you need to go through Inman Square, which has proven deadly multiple times, up backed-up Prospect, into Somerville, and around the unprotected intersections at Webster. Then just because you’re going the right way on Tremont doesn’t mean you’re safe from speeding drivers who will honk at you for simply existing. Are you really upset when people on bikes decide to go a few meters in the wrong direction to avoid this trouble?
Besides, cities in countries much, much safer than ours usually allow bicyclists to bike against the flow on one-way streets like ours. It has the effect of making the street safer by making drivers slow down and pay attention, which is exactly what we want on Tremont St! In the Netherlands, on a street shaped like ours, you would see: https://tinyurl.com/y33re68j (uitgezonderd means ‘excepted from the rule’). The little red path is for bicyclists to go counter-flow, and helps avoid conflicts if someone is traveling in the opposite direction by providing lane markings. The pictured street is the exact same size as ours. Dutch road safety is many, many times higher than ours here in the US. We can have this here if we can just decide that people on bicycles should be encouraged. I hope I have convinced you to advocate for bicycle safety instead of against it – people on bicycles are also vulnerable road users that require advocacy instead of scolding.
More honking at garbage trucks this morning.
@CrazyJane - Glad we agree. Officially advocating for proven-safe 'bicycles excepted' infrastructure, which would cost Cambridge no significant extra resources might be a great way to reduce conflicts on our street. That little bit of paint on the road in the Dutch example I sent is usually sufficient to remind people to look both ways before entering the street. It also fixes the speeding, to some extent. We're going to see an increase of road users when the Green Line opens anyway, so best if we're prepared for it rather than fight it.
@Cambridge 101 - What if I told you vulnerable road users don't have to die, even if they make a little mistake? But if you're talking about Ms Phillips, then your rewriting of history is insensitive and deceitful. Inman Square has been host to dozens of collisions; it is dangerous. Period. Cambridge has tried to address the issue by implementing a city-wide 20mph limit, even if it is not being completely enforced. Anyway, my follow-up post was about learning from countries that our safer than ours to improve our rules and designs. Why does that trigger you?
You could just stop and walk your bike on the sidewalk for the "few meters" to your house. You know, instead of putting yourself in a less than ideal, shall we say, even potentially fatal position, as biking the wrong way down a street.
Also, we are in the U.S., not the Netherlands. I know you are aware of this possibly? It's hard to tell since you spent a paragraph telling us how safe the Netherlands is or something. I do not see how this point you made is relevant to our laws.
I look forward to your triggered, emotionally charged reply.
What do you think about my getting off your bike and walking it down the sidewalk idea? Sounds like a pretty safe route for you as a biker.
@CrazyJayne - I'm sorry. I will try to be more polite to people who imply I should go back to my country.
@Sutera - I never said I was a "biker", I just use empathy and evidence to envision a better street for all of us. As to your suggestion for even more users crowding our narrow sidewalks on our otherwise very wide street (3 lanes for cars!), COVID-19 has declared that dépassé. Pardon my French.
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