Do The Park Cities Need Bike Lanes?

Over the weekend, an Oak Cliff resident was struck and injured while riding his bike across the Jefferson Boulevard Viaduct. This has absolutely nothing to do with the Park Cities, but it got me thinking.

Do the Park Cities need bike lanes?

I ride my bike pretty regularly, but I try to stick to roads that are, a.) pretty wide, and b.) off the beaten path. I, for instance, would never ride on Oak Lawn Avenue or Preston Road, and spend as little time as possible on Mockingbird. If there were bike lanes, though, I’d probably ride on one of those three at least once a week.

With more and more residents choosing to ride their bikes to work instead of drive their cars, is something the Park Cities need? Or is it just something for Dallas?

12 thoughts on “Do The Park Cities Need Bike Lanes?

  • January 16, 2012 at 3:27 pm
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    No.

    Who rides a bike to work in Dallas (or HP/UP) outside the two or three temperate months of the year? And even during those good months, the numbers must be tiny.

    I ride all the time for exercise but avoid the busy streets – too many idiots phoning, texting, browsing the internet and playing games. A solid white line won’t stop any of those morons from swerving over and hitting me.

    Bike riders will never be safe if they depend on drivers to stay in their lanes and not hit them. If you’re a biker, wear a helmet, leave the iPod at home and follow traffic laws. Assume everyone everyone behind the wheel of a car wants to kill you and ride accordingly.

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  • January 16, 2012 at 6:54 pm
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    Agree with Neal. Unless they are totally separated from the street, they will just give a false sense of security. Bikes/cars, different animals, need different play areas.

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  • January 17, 2012 at 8:18 am
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    Not needed. Streets like Mockingbird barely have enough room for 2 vehicle lanes. There’s no room for bike lanes. There is plenty of room on the side streets.

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  • January 17, 2012 at 3:35 pm
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    No

    It may be counter intuitive, but bike lanes cause accidents. Bikes are vehicles, just as cars and motorcycles, with most of the same rights and responsibilities. Unfortunately, the responsibilities part gets forgotten by a lot of cyclists and this doesn’t engender good will with motorists, but having a car turn right across a bike lane going straight doesn’t create too much goodwill either.

    The initial cost of a bikelane is a small part of its overall cost. Heck, you can probably find some volunteers to just buy some paint and rollers and do it for free – but who pays to keep those paths useable? Without keeping them swept they rapidly become useless due to the accumulation of road debris and then guess where the bikes wind up? Further into traffic than before the bike lane was in place.

    Bike lanes also condition drivers that as long as there is a bike lane, then cyclist in it be damned, I’ve got the whole road. This results in a much higher incidence of cars passing very close to cyclists, decreasing safety not enhancing it. The white stripe doesn’t create a magic safety wall.

    Bike lane advocates have agendas that are not cycling related. They might be the Center of The Universe that wants no one else in ‘their’ way on the road, or they might be engineers or contractors selling traffic plans or paint, or they might be politicians or political wannabes that want to put their thumbprints on something perceived as ‘good’ by those that don’t know any better.

    So ride like you have been, obeying the traffic laws and using some common sense by staying off Preston and Hillcrest at rush hour. Instead of spending money on senseless ‘improvement projects’ like bike lanes, let’s get the Park Cities police departments out there giving tickets for cyclists running stop signs and cars making unsafe passes.

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  • January 17, 2012 at 10:14 pm
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    I lived in Europe for several years and the bike lanes make sense. In Europe. Not that I live in Dallas, I get frustrated with the people who think they can “bike” to keep up with traffic. There are sidewalks, which no one ever uses and there is plenty of room for bikes here. I often get frustrated with bikers on the road because quite simply, they are in the way. Use the sidewalks in Dallas, there isn’t room for you on the roads. Until we turn into a bike friend Euro, way, please stay out of our way!

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  • January 18, 2012 at 4:50 am
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    No. Bicycles are vehicles. Cyclists are drivers. Cycling is incredibly safe when done responsibly. Come learn how and why on feb 3rd and 4th via cyclingsavvydfw.org!!!

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  • January 18, 2012 at 8:57 am
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    No. Bicycles should also not have a right to bike on streets without bike lanes. Now, to that you might say, well duh, that’s why we want bike lanes. And the answer to that is; show me a study that goes into pros and cons of cost (double it since we would probably put up all kinds of signs and paint lines which would then need to be re-done for cosmetic reasons; see the not a park park at Hillcrest/Lovers), traffic issues (congestion/lane size), safety issues, and potential pedalers based on area demographics. At the end of the day, bicycles are not cars and our streets were designed for cars. If you can’t get your bike up to 30mph in less than 6 seconds or maintain that speed; get on the sidewalk or find a less trafficked road.

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  • January 18, 2012 at 11:54 am
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    I propose we put in bike gutters where the cyclysts can crash comfortably when I run them off the road for riding up Hillcrest during rush hour. Yes I am speaking to you, JA, that caused a huge jam on Hillcrest yesterday.

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  • January 18, 2012 at 3:02 pm
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    Avid Reader – “bicycles are not cars and our streets were designed for cars.” Wrong. Bicycles and cars are equal in the eyes of the law, and streets were designed for the transport of people and goods, not ‘cars’. Look up Eno’s Rules… It’s one of the things covered in our Cycling Savvy Class.

    And ‘bump’ – why would you be so upset about a bike on Hillcrest? It’s a multi-laned road, and there are enough traffic lights that everyone is properly inconvenienced. Bikes don’t cause traffic – bikes, as well as cars, trucks, motorcycles, horse carriages, etc… ARE traffic. If you can’t deal with that, then maybe you should let someone else drive. Come take a ride with us at Cycling Savvy, and see just how much impact well-behaved cyclists make.

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  • January 18, 2012 at 4:51 pm
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    Richard, The law is the law and that’s fine. Here in the real world; they are not equal. They are not equal in protection. They are not equal in speed. They are not equal visibility. They are not equal in the amount of visible safety gear such as blinkers, rear view mirrors, or brake lights. No amount of bicycle safety education or how well-behaved a cyclist might be; will ever even out that playing field.

    When I accidentally swerve trying not to hit a kid darting into the road after a ball and sideswipe another car; I am mildly annoyed that I have to deal with my insurance agent to get the dings out. When I accidentally swerve trying not to hit a kid darting into the road after a ball and completely run over a bicyclist; I am now a killer and a little more than mildly annoyed.

    Are there not sidewalks on Hillcrest? Again, if the bicyclist can not pedal fast enough to get their bicycle up to 30mph in 6 seconds or maintain that speed; get on the sidewalk or find a road less traveled.

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  • January 18, 2012 at 6:50 pm
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    The sidewalk is not the road. I am not a pedestrian. Come to the sideshow on the eve of the third and enlighten yourself. You never know what you’ll take away from it. Are you a cyclist, btw? It seems thy so many decisions are being made for cyclists against their will or input.

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