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May 27, 2009

WWJST? Salt Lake City to Become More Bicycle Friendly

What Would Joseph Smith Think? ;-D

The Salt Lake Tribune has a great story this week on cycling in "Mormon Central".

Salt Lake City Mayor Ralph Becker's passion for bicycling gets painted on asphalt this summer with new bike lanes along 22 miles of city streets.

Over the next two or three years he hopes to double the 60 miles of road currently buffered by bike lanes, and his budget includes $500,000 toward the goal. That's a tenfold increase over bike budgets before his term, and doesn't include $100,000 in federal economic stimulus dollars helping complete the Jordan River trail.

The City Council still has to sign off on the plan, though.

"It's important for our whole quality of life, for our health, for reducing air pollution, for better use of energy," said Becker, himself a bike commuter to City Hall. "We've got wide streets and we should be able to accommodate bike lanes as well."

Bumping up the budget meant slowing down street maintenance, the mayor said. He also expects cyclists to take some responsibility and stop running red lights -- a common sight downtown. The city is aiding educational efforts to stop it.

The capital's bike program is easily Utah's most aggressive, but bicycle commuters valleywide are finding reason for hope. Salt Lake County is completing an interactive map to show where 16 cities plus townships and unincorporated zones could coordinate for continuous bike routes.

The rest of the article discusses the plans, and reactions of cyclist, motorists, and the Business Community and, in a nice finishing touch, there is an interesting Statistical Chart that discusses Bikes and Crashes as summarized from the Utah Department of Public Safety, Division of Highway Safety, 2007 Utah Crash Summary.

Read: Cyclists await friendlier commutes in Salt Lake City - The city will double lane miles as the county maps routes By Brandon Loomis

May 27, 2009 in Pedaling Advocacy | Permalink

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