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Saturday, March 5, 2011

improvising protected bike lanes

There’s been a ton of construction going on along Fair Oaks Ave lately – they’re resurfacing the road. I usually avoid this street as it’s a fairly major thoroughfare – two lanes each way, crosses a freeway, stoplights, business parks, etc. Since the construction, though, I’ve been riding this street a lot. It seems strange I know because it’s become doubly congested now. The new advantage though is that for about a mile in each direction the right lane is closed off to cars. There’s a line of those tall skinny orange traffic cones running along what was previously the line between the two lanes – a cone about every 20 or 30 feet. To the right of that line of cones is a gap of about 4 or 5 feet before another line of cones that block off the actual construction zone – creating a long empty corridor. I think you know where I’m going with this: free bike lane! It’s dope. The street goes up and down a moderate hill so on the way down you can zip by like 100 cars. And even on the way up the hill, maybe only pulling 9 mph, but there’s so many cars stuck in there you can ride past a good 30. It’s been nice, like living in Copenhagen. It would be (will be) amazing to see that (someday) permanently converted to a forward-thinking-multi-modal-pedestrian-community-safe-friendly-calm-happy street – with big old oak trees wending along the way for killer shade.

1 comment:

JustinM said...

If I'm going to Bristol Farms, Mamma's, Subway, or any of the other places I go on Fair Oaks, I walk. It takes about half an hour - probably less time than trying to drive. (To turn left on Fair Oaks from State, where it's down to one turning lane, usually takes three light cycles and at least ten minutes.)

Plus I've heard walking is good for you.