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What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?  

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
In article <3f4ac2b2.8526805@news.cis.dfn.de>, Burn Gum! It Melts! wrote:

> I'd like to nominate the suburbs of Cincinnati. I don't think there are any bike lanes in the area
> except for one or two in the city itself. The roads themselves are horribly inadequate. Worse than
> this, the rich suburbanites with their SUVs enjoy intentionally running bicyclists off the road.

I usually refuse to post into the trolling threads of don q. but I've seen this bicycle lane thing
in two responses now.

Bike lanes do *NOT* make a place bicycle friendly. A glorified shoulder to ride on is meaningless.
If anything I've found bicycle lanes make drivers more unfriendly. If you are riding a road that
doesn't have one there will be drivers who think bicycles aren't allowed because there isn't a
bicycle lane. When there is one, they'll think you must remain within it regardless of the danger or
need to make a left turn. Worse yet those bicycle lanes will often be painted in such a way that
staying within them means riding in a manner one wouldn't even consider if that stripe wasn't there.

The best places I have ridden a bicycle are where there are wide curb lanes and people have been
fairly well conditioned to seeing road going bicyclists. It's even better when traffic speeds are
generally 20-30mph and moving well. (ie no traffic jams or large queues at lights).

Most of the traditional wide curb laned streets in chicago proper qualify for this. Before they
started having bike lanes painted in the door zone.
post #2 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

I'd concur that Detroit is pretty bad bacause of poor road maintenance, though my comment is
confined to the route I took (US 12) Both my riding companion and I got flats on that stretch,
because of all the junk on the road.

Traffic wise, I found going through Dallas a marginal experience I wouldn't be in a hurry to repeat.

Weather wise, Vancouver's 180 days of precipitation (including all three I was there) is a pretty
good downer, but there were lots of bikes out none-the-less.

"Mike Vermeulen" <mike.nospam@vermeulen.com> wrote in message
news:3f4ac2ca.308947406@news.4dv.net...
> >I would like to nominate Miami Beach as the Least Bicycle Friendly Community.
>
> I respectfully disagree. I've ridden US1 into downtown Miami, across the bridge and then on A1A
> through heart of Miami Beach. US1 coming into Miami from the south was worse than riding through
> downtown Miami Beach (though to be truthful my motel room in Miami Beach had plywood over a
> cracked window and I did get a flat tire riding in town...)
>
> However, in my cycle touring in the USA, there are three places I'd nomimate as being worse than
> what I experienced in Miami Beach:
>
> #3. South of Providence, RI on US1 while the airport
> road was being rebuilt
> #2. Baton Rouge, LA coming in on US69 from the north
>
> and my all time least favorite:
>
> #1. Detroit, Michigan on most roads (I think took US24)
>
> In truth, I've found that the experience really varies with what types of roads you are able to
> find (e.g. shoulders, road conditions, traffic). In many large cities, I've found what I consider
> a "killing zone" in doughnut shape around core city. Inside the hole, traffic speeds are too
> slow...outside the doughnut traffic densities are lower. In the doughnut region of ~20+ miles are
> both high speeds and high densities...Miami Beach isn't the worst though...
>
> --mev, Mike Vermeulen
>
> p.s. Some close runner ups, though they were better than Miami Beach: -- Longbeach, California on
> the PCH -- Colby, Kansas downtown
post #3 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

If the category is 'country' then the answer is obvious:

Saudi Arabia.

Women are not allowed to ride bicycles and face severe punishment from the religious police if they
try to do so.

They probably don't have bike lanes either.
post #4 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

On Tue, 26 Aug 2003 16:25:47 GMT, "Buck" <j u n k m a i l @ g a l a x y c o r p . c o m> wrote:
>
>Cycling in the rain is always a joy for me. A good set of fenders combined with a good set of rain
>gear makes puddle-hopping great fun!

True -- but remember you share the road. Rain reduces the vision of drivers, who routinely
"overdrive" their visual field in bad weather. It narrows their vision, too, Both physically, as
they look through a piece of windshield that has been imperfectly cleared and smudged by wipers, and
psychologically. The latter is due to the fact that they don't "expect" to see a bicyclist in that
kind of weather, so you on your bike aren't on their "radar screen". IT takes an extra bit of time
while the "what the hell is THAT in my way?" algorithm computes.

Add to that the inferior braking and increased actual stopping distances in the rain, and you'd
better believe the hair on the back of my neck is standing up.

Enjoy the joy -- but acknowledge and deal with the increased risk.
post #5 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

"Brent P" <tetraethyllead@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:W1M2b.103576$2x.29851@rwcrnsc52.ops.asp.att.net...

> Here's how I avoid those problems, I use the roadway. If one uses the shoulder one can expect a
> surface that is totally unsuitable for vehicular travel.

Yep, it seems strange that in the US cyclists are so obsessed with *demanding* bike lanes. Over here
in the UK cyclists generally do *not* like bike lanes as they can cause motorists to be hostile to
cyclists who sensibly choose to cycle on the road itself.
post #6 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

In article <d35d6005.0308261300.39027342@posting.google.com>, bay_bridge_tgv@yahoo.com
(bikerider7) wrote:

> If the category is 'country' then the answer is obvious:
>
> Saudi Arabia.
>
> Women are not allowed to ride bicycles and face severe punishment from the religious police if
> they try to do so.
>
> They probably don't have bike lanes either.

OTOH, the weather is nice.
post #7 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

Marlene Blanshay wrote:
>
> In article <d35d6005.0308261300.39027342@posting.google.com>, bay_bridge_tgv@yahoo.com
> (bikerider7) wrote:
> > Saudi Arabia.
>
> OTOH, the weather is nice.

I hear it's a dry heat. ;-)
post #8 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

Burn Gum! It Melts! wrote:
> Of course Bush is a strong supporter of the government of Saudi Arabia.

Of course, the main opposition that wants to take over the government of Saudi Arabia is even worse.

--Bill Davidson
--
Please remove ".nospam" from my address for email replies.

I'm a 17 year veteran of usenet -- you'd think I'd be over it by now
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

In article <3f4bbcec.72594696@news.cis.dfn.de>, Burn Gum! It Melts! wrote:
> On Tue, 26 Aug 2003 16:38:14 GMT, tetraethyllead@yahoo.com (Brent P) said:
>
>>Here's how I avoid those problems, I use the roadway.
>
> Try riding a bike on the roadway of, say, Taylor Mill Road just south of I-275.

Don't even know what state you are talking about.

> For most bicyclists who attempt this, their next ride will likely be in a hearse.

I've ridden six lane arterials, divided highways, etc and so forth without any serious issue. (these
roads didn't even have shoulders btw) Problems arise when the road is severely underposted and the
right lane because the pass-the-lane-blocking-arsehole-lane. Then it's not fun, but still not enough
to get me to risk being cliped by turning vehicles and dodging crap on the shoulder.
post #10 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

The Silver Comet is an excellent bike trail in Atlanta, at least if you're in the west suburbs.
OTOH, getting therre can be a problem. A lot of the local roads are quite narrow for the amount of
traffic they carry. I thought the drivers were quite attentive, IMHO

"Evan" <buddha@operamail.com> wrote in message
news:99b874a9.0308260434.57a5c939@posting.google.com...
> Atlanta by far.
>
> Traffic, bad air, lots of roads where people drive two or three times the speed limit and far too
> many people reading as they drive.
post #11 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

"Burn Gum! It Melts!" <bandit@iglou.com> wrote in message news:3f4bfd95.89150646@news.cis.dfn.de...
> On 26 Aug 2003 14:00:00 -0700, bay_bridge_tgv@yahoo.com (bikerider7) said:
>
> >If the category is 'country' then the answer is obvious:
> >
> >Saudi Arabia.
> >
> >Women are not allowed to ride bicycles and face severe punishment from the religious police if
> >they try to do so.
>
> Of course Bush is a strong supporter of the government of Saudi Arabia.
>
> --
>
> I think. Therefore, I am not a conservative!

I'VE RIDDEN IN A LOT OF PLACES AND WOULD HAVE REAL TROUBLE FINDING A CONSISTENT PATTERN BETWEEN AN
AREA'S BIKE FRIENDLINESS AND ITS POLITICAL COLORATION.
> ----- http://members.iglou.com/bandit ------
>
> Check out my blog blogga blog at http://bandit73.pitas.com
>
> Say NO to Ernie "Hey Bert" Fletcher! Vote for the other bozo!
post #12 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

In article <3f4ac2ca.308947406@news.4dv.net>, mike.nospam@vermeulen.com (Mike Vermeulen) writes:

>p.s. Some close runner ups, though they were better than Miami Beach: -- Longbeach, California on
> the PCH -- Colby, Kansas downtown

Now I've only driven through Colby (a fairly sleepy town in Western Kansas) but am surprised to see
it garner dishonerable mention. howcome?

Tom Gibb <TBGibb@aol.com
post #13 of 13

Re: What's the most unfriendly city/country toward bicycles?

tetraethyllead@yahoo.com (Brent P) wrote:
>>>Here's how I avoid those problems, I use the roadway.
>>
>> Try riding a bike on the roadway of, say, Taylor Mill Road just south of I-275.
>
>Don't even know what state you are talking about.

Kentucky, just 5 miles or so south from Cincinnati, Ohio (another "bicyclist's hell").

>> For most bicyclists who attempt this, their next ride will likely be in a hearse.
.. at some
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