Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Cycling supporters on a roll in S.F.

Image of bicyclists on Market Street in San Francisco
"Bicycle Coalition has political clout and backing of public -- but resistance by some motorists is still creating tension." This curious story in the usually bike-hostile San Francisco Chronicle is an interesting testimony to the growing strength of the alternative transporation movement.

A better story might have been on the impact of the SFBC's work over the past 16 years, just what this "political clout" is helping to obtain. Off top of skull, I can think of:

1) Traffic calming: Any reduction in ped/bike injuries? Any reduction of vehicular collisions? Impact on property values? Impact on livability?

2) Retail economy: instead of one whiny merchant, how about looking at new bike shops, retail sales along bike corridors, increase in bike tourism, increase in bike rental business, etc. (these are all my anecdotal observations, not confirmed, but interesting to know.)

3) No mention of League of American Bicyclists recent recognition of San Francisco as a "Gold Level" Bicycle-Friendly Community.

4) Innovations such as the "sharrow", which SF pioneered and have now been approved by Cal DOT for use in other communities. (Might be nice if this article educated motorists about sharrows.)

5) Improved public health: any noted trends in SF in past 16 years that might be tied to a doubling of bike commuting?

I'm a proud member of the San Francisco Bicycle Coalition, which is an advocacy model for cyclists across the U.S. Organized bicyclists can make a difference.

Image: San Francisco Chronicle
Visit: Paul Dorn's Bike Commuting Tips Site

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