FYI, I sent the following comment to the FHWA Facebook page this morning. I expect that it may be subject to review before it appears.
I took the liberty of also quoting Doug and John.
I have concerns about “New video shows how FHWA makes walking, biking safer” Is the efficiency of travel by bicycle to be jeopardized to maintain or enhance primacy of motor vehicle travel? To what extent will providing facilities (Sidepaths) with some level of comfort and increased safety require people bicycling to only use them?
I, and many people who already find bicycle travel to be a better choice for many trips are worried that people bicycling will be further marginalized if the right and ability to use public roadways is diminished rather than enhanced.
Ask me how to make bicycling a more popular choice for transportation.
Jim Baross Jr
President, California Association of Bicycling Organizations (CABO)
Note the following recent discourse from the public forum of the California Association of Bicycling Organization’s (CABObike.org)
From Doug Williams, Jan. 7, 2015 to CABOforum
I had the same notion [previous comments below from J.F.] when I viewed the video. I suppose that the “new design fans” are always going to overplay the safety of their plans and underplay how their designs slow down competent bicyclists who are capable of riding in traffic. If this were not the case, there would be no conflict in the bicycling community. Hey, if you can build a bike path that is safer for me to ride in WITHOUT any loss in my commute speed…please build it and I will ride it. But no…I haven’t seen many of those.
Why do bike path fans feel that is is necessary to criticize vehicular cyclists? Why can’t they support our right to ride on the street at the same time that they advocate bike paths? The answer, of course, is that they feel that competent vehicular cyclists threaten their plans. That doesn’t have to be the case. I’m not against bike paths that don’t slow me down, but I am tired of being told that only 1% of cyclists are capable of safely riding on the street. Anyone can do so with just a minimum of training! I’m tired of being told that riding on the street is a bad thing that only daredevils with no concern for public safety do. Jeez! You would think that people who promote vehicular riding and train people to ride in the street safely are menaces to society!
Why is it so difficult for bike path fans to advocate bike paths AND AT THE SAME TIME support my right to ride in the street? Am I going to get a ticket if I leave their magically protected green bike lane and merge into the (gasp) motor vehicle traffic lane?
On Wednesday, January 7, 2015 12:19:18 PM UTC-8, John Forester wrote:
The same old propaganda based on foolish superstitions, with only a grain of truth in the presentation. Then there’s the same old propaganda that their designs make cycling safe and useful for cyclists without traffic skills and without compromising safety and usefulness for cyclists with traffic skills. Society should not permit all cyclists to be dumped in the pile of incompetents; those cyclists with traffic competence ought to be allowed to obey the rules of the road for drivers of vehicles.
San Diego, CA