By Will DolezalMinneapolis is a magnificent area for bike enthusiasts to enjoy the outdoors or commute to work and it ranks among the highest percentage of bicycle commutes in the U.S. However, the impressive network of bike lanes in Minneapolis is not inclusive to everyone who might want to join in the good, clean fun. An exciting new initiative called “Bikeways for Everyone” aims to change this, making bicycling easier to enjoy and safer for all by implementing a connected network of cycletracks across the city. What?
Cycletracks are protected bike lanes separating bicyclists from vehicle traffic and pedestrians using a physical barrier such as a parking lane, median divider or marking posts. The physical barrier differentiates cycletracks from the painted bike lanes that can be found around Minneapolis. Cycletracks are ideal for the many of us who are uncomfortable biking in traffic and helps position bicycling as a feasible transportation mode for everyone who wants to ride a bike more. If Chicago can do it, why can’t we? A new cycletrack on Kinzie Street (Chicago Department of Transportation).
If Chicago can do it, why can’t we? A new cycletrack on Kinzie Street (Chicago Department of Transportation).
Bikeways for Everyone is taking the first steps in making these and other cycletrack developments possible. You can support the implementation of cycletracks in Minneapolis by conversing with your neighbors and friends on the topic and by contacting your Minneapolis City Council member and Hennepin County Commissioner. Here are some talking points you can use:
- I wanted to let you know that protected bike lanes (known as cycletracks) on Minnehaha and Washington Aveues would be a huge improvement in how these streets work for my family.
- I do not feel comfortable biking with my children on streets with just painted bike lanes. Traffic is too fast, and a narrower street with a separate, protected place for biking would be much safer for everyone.
- I would be more likely to visit local businesses if there were a cycletrack network throughout Minneapolis.
- Please do everything you can to make sure that Minnehaha and Washington Avenues are rebuilt with cycletracks, and that a Bikeways for Everyone cycletrack network is developed for all of Minneapolis.
Please take action today, and let us know you did! Contact Joshua at firstname.lastname@example.orgWill Dolezal is a volunteer with the Sierra Club North Star Chapter Land Use and Transportation Committee.