Monday, August 25, 2008

Wingnuts in Victorian Houses

Maybe bikes like this should be kept off the roads.

I can't take credit for finding this, I found it on the very well-designed K-Wall Blog, but I thought others should read it. Or, if you don't want to read the article, this is a brief summary:

This man in San Francisco named Rob Anderson hates bicycles. He's a bitter and unemployed political muckraker of little popularity. None the less, he was able to halt San Francisco's plan to expand their bicycle infrastructure by suing them because the Board of Supervisors voted to skip the environmental impact review. Conventional wisdom is that increased bicycle infrastructure will encourage more people to ride their bikes and therefore reduce the number of cars on the road. The few cars, the few pollutants in the air. Mr. Anderson believes that cars will never leave the road and that developing more bicycle infrastructure will cause more traffic jams. More traffic jams, he says, means more idling cars wasting gas and expelling pollutants into the air. He prevailed in California's Courts and San Francisco is being forced to do the environmental impact review, and they are doing it very slowly.

Now I'm all in favor of environmental impact reviews for most things, but from what I understand, SF's plan was to roll out more bike lanes, a traffic matter. From my little bit of experience with municipal government, we don't need to do this type of impact study if we change traffic patterns. Further, the logic makes no sense. If you clarify who is where on the road, traffic will flow better and more safely for everyone.

However, the big thing is "Why is the WSJ legitimizing this guy?" I mean, there are some pretty obvious reasons, but it really vexes me that they're handing out new talking points for people to oppose/hate bikes.

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