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Nicely done. Love it when you get mad. (Also, she gets a -1 for misusing "comprised.") Hoping to be at the meeting on Monday.

I'd just like to thank you for the advocacy work you do. I read stuff like this and just throw up my hands wondering how such crazy crap gets published or acknowledged in any way. I don't know if I should laugh or cry.

I'm sorry that this is the face of the opposition. Some of us oppose the bike lanes on just the narrowest portion of King St. for safety reasons alone. Come through the neighborhood! You're welcome! We love cyclists. We don't mean to be like helicopter parents, but we don't want you to be hurt. We know better than to ride on King St. My path to my gym, though fastest on King, is on the back streets, whether I'm cycling or driving, because King is so dangerous and congested and stupid. I think our neighborhood cyclists get the danger. I hope those of you who do not live here can understand that the stretch between Russell and Janney's is too narrow and cannot be widened. This status quo -- going through the neighborhood -- is not bad. It's not broken. Don't be hell bent on fixing it.

While I agree with most of your points, I can't say that I agree with pushing for bike lanes on that piece of King Street. What I would prefer is a safe way to get from Duke and Telegraph to King Street Metro. Duke is wider than King, and has more room for bike lanes. And it fills the access gap between the West End and Old Town just as much as King Street. As for King, Cameron Street crosses the barrier going under the Metro and railroad tracks so there is an alternative.

"We love cyclists. We don't mean to be like helicopter parents, but we don't want you to be hurt."
.....wow.... I thought these kinds of people only existed in fiction.


There are few connections on the south side of King Street to get to Janney's Lane or further up toward Fairlington and none exist on the north side of King Street. Thus, there are not many options for people to get to those neighborhoods. What if someone wanted to ride their bike to school at TC? I have no problem riding through Chinquapin however not everyone is comfortable riding off road as was quite obvious in the group ride that I hosted over the weekend.

This is, as you eleoquently argue, an incoherent rant published in a magazine of like minded folks. It's easy to get angry about such drivel, but in the end, the battle for the middle is fought in other arenas, not in a magazine arguing that socialist big government ought to get out of everything except building bigger roads to be used for subsidized auto transportation.


there are lots of arterials like that across the region. Where traffic is fast, where alternatives are not good, and where bike lanes on the arterial would help. To accept your "not helicopeter parenting" (by the way, I am over 50) would go against what needs to be done across the region.

The fact that cyclists cannot take the more direct, easier route, and that, from what I understand, walking on King is also uncomfortable, is a broken situation. It can be fixed, but only at the expense of some parking.

Let me ask you - if there was no one parking on King for some other reason, would you still think biking there (on a formal bike lane, or on the informal bike lane the shoulder would become) would be a bad idea? If not, then really this is about parking.

This woman hates liberalism and is a tea partier. She must find life in Rosemont somewhat uncomfortable to say the least. Can't imagine she talks like this with her neighbors. This may account for some of her rage.

The fact that she brought up Le Moullac is sickening. SFMTA has had plans to put in separated bike infrastructure along that corridor for a few years now but they have let that project sit. If anything, that crash shows that better infrastructure is needed sooner rather than later.


"My own city of Alexandria"! My god, she's speaking for everyone. I try not to read shite like that because it just angries up the blood. Too late.

I don't get that way often, but I hereby promise that from now on, when I go through that area, I will take the *entire* lane. Slowly.

It helps me calm down after reading this kind of nonsense to remember that these people are fighting a rear guard action against a bottom-up social change. This is not health care reform or reducing CO2 emissions, it's people realizing, in increasing number, that urban driving sucks and making individual decisions based on the immediate conditions of their lives. Reactionaries can slow it down, maybe, but they can't stop it.

Damn, she has seen through our plot for world domination. Our plan is foiled. I am giving up the bicycle and going back to commuting by black helicopter.

Under Chairman Mao, the Chinese got around by bicycle

Bush league trolling, that.

You know who else got around by bicycle?

Step 1 is to convince City Hall to paint “sharrows” on a road, indicating that the road is to be shared with cyclists. Only the road is already shared with cyclists, so what’s the point?

Well, to put a fine point on it, the point of a sharrow is to a) show cyclists where to ride; and b) signal to entitled fuckwits like the author of this piece that, yes, cyclists are legitimate users of the road.

One might argue that such a reminder is unnecessary, but I can testify that ain't the case. I'll always treasure the memory of riding on S Walter Reed towards N Beauregard and having some knuckle dragger shrieking at me to "get on the sidewalk" despite the sharrows and a posted sign every 20 yards that said "Bikes May Take Full Lane".

But it's the people on bikes who have a sense of entitlement. LOL.

I would like to make one thing clear. I'm not taking the lane as a political or lifestyle statement. I'm taking the lane because the alternative, discovered through painful trial and error, is being knocked down by cars. A lot.

I've been commuting by black helicopter for years. I outsourced biking in the center of the lane to annoy drivers to an illegal immigrant even though many Americans wanted the job. It was more efficient.

Re: China's middle class abandoning bikes for cars. Just Google "China smog" and enjoy the photos. They literally can't breath in many of those cities.

to be fair, thats more coal fired power plants than it is cars. I think.

or the giant traffic jam:


Brilliant article.

When any sensible analysis shows this to be a matter of safety versus convenience parking for a handful of well-connected residents, the residents have no choice but to turn up the crazy and keep piling it on. Consider, for example, the stunningly insulting "We don't mean to be like helicopter parents" comment above. Sickening.

Marjorie and John, I appreciate your comments. But if you think that "King is so dangerous and congested and stupid" then the status quo clearly is broken. When a residential street, with a speed limit of 25 mph, that can provide so much connectivity is deemed to be so dangerous that one should not bike on it - then it's broken.

If 25mph, residential streets aren't the kind we should encourage cyclists to use then I have to wonder what streets are available?

Everyone appreciates the concern, but in the end we're adults and we can make our own choices and you should support fixes that make the street safer.

As for their being other connections that are just as good - if that were true, then there would be no one riding on it now. Not on the sidewalks and not on the road. But that isn't the case.

I'd just like to remind the other members of the all-powerful bike lobby that our monthly meeting at the UN has been moved to the bunker complex in Portland. It has been refitted with more space for black helicopters and a taxpayer-funded moustache waxing center. Comrades should check Al Jazeera for further updates.

Show up at the hearing. Let the people who make decisions about how to allocate space on public streets hear your thoughts. Every decision about how we use our public resources communicates something about our community values. Do we say that we value people who use a public street for occasional visitors to a private residences (that already has private parking) over the safety of kids, adults and seniors commuting daily to work and school?

WashCycle's response is great but preaching to the choir. Please try to get your response out to a broader audience.

I have the public meeting on my calendar. The more cyclists show up, the stronger our cause!!!!

@oboe, the exact same thing happened to me on that same stretch of Walter Reed. Exact same directive, "get on the sidewalk!" I calmly stayed the course while pointing directly at the "Bikes may use full lane" sign and the markings on the road.

The King Street bike lane project by the numbers:

Number of cars using on-street parking, daily on average: 3

Number of bicyclists counted by BPAC during a 2-hour period: 8

Last time I checked, 8 > 3.

We don't mean to be like helicopter parents

Screw you lady,I'm 44 and retired military. I don't need anyone to worry about me. You know what I do need? You to follow the law. Obey the speed limit,hang up the phone,and pass by a safe distance. If car drivers acted the way they want cyclists to act,it would save thousands of lives every year.

Also curious as to why Esther is going on about Crit Mass? The closest it's ever come to Old Town is Rosslyn.

Meanwhile, my letter to the city:


FYI, the bicycle count was 11 per hour between 5 and 7 pm. Counts were taken on three successive days during the week and averaged to get that number.

However, because conditions on King St are so unpleasant, may of those accessed King St via Walnut, which is steeper than King, and then got off of King St as soon as possible. It is reasonable to expect that those numbers would increase quite a bit it there was a more direct path to the Metro on King itself (Walnut is perpendicular to King and does not bring people closer to the Metro station).

How is it going to be safer for cyclists when the proposed bike lane will end 2 blocks from the intersection with Russell & Callahan which is a block from the Metro, which is at the most narrow, congested part of King St.?

What will cyclists do?

Mr. Krall,
Now there is a caveat to the count? At every meeting and in comments you have stated that the bike count was 11 per hour.
No time period was ever given.
So now it was only in a 2 hour window over 3 days.
Good to know.
Thank you for clarifying.

What will cyclists do?

What do they do now? How it will it be safer without a bike lane?

It will be safer with a bike lane because cyclists will be able to get in the bike lane.

King is relatively flat at that point, so some people will be willing to take the lane who might not be on the up grade. And some people may bail and take ths sidewalk - if there are too many peds they can walk their bikes - it least its not a far to walk them as if they had to walk them all the way from Janney's. And some may be heading to the Amtrak station, not to the metro.

Jonathan: 11 per hour or 11 for the two-hour block?

Mr. Krall,
Residents on King Street have been counting the number of cyclists per hour over a 5 day work week during morning and afternoon rush hours. Our numbers are very different than yours and lower by a wide margin.
We have also counting during some of the weekend hours.

11 per hour. I think the variation in reported numbers comes from the fact that we reported some numbers the first day we had any (the person doing the counting went out for two more days that week).

One can also get different numbers by moving the count location to somewhere other than between Walnut and Upland. As we've been saying, people don't like the current conditions on King, but you have to go on King to get from east to west. Walnut to King to Upland isn't exactly a direct route, but it does minimize exposure to King St.

Its good to see people fighting over data. At the same time, there is a chicken and egg problem that the anti-cyclists do not acknowledge: if you have given all the infrastrucure and legal protections to cars, you are going to see more cars. At some stage, the only way to decrease traffic is to decrease the number of cars, and that requires non-car options, which you cannot get unless you make it safe and inviting for other moders

Jonathan: thanks.

Darlene: have you offered to share these counts (including dates/times) with the Bicycle Pedestrian Advisory Committee?

I, for one, hope that the anti-crowd continues to be represented by people like this lady and that Buckley guy. I couldn't paint them in a more accurately negative light of entitlement if I tried myself.

Also, it's getting bike people involved. These kinds of antis are alienating those who are most likely to agree with them, but who'd rather not associate with Crazypants AND getting press, making anyone on a bike, or anyone who knows anyone on a bike willing to go to a 3.5 hour traffic and safety board hearing on a cold Monday night.

Until last night, I had been in that City Council chamber exactly once in my near 10 years of living in Alexandria. 10 years of living between no more than 6 blocks (and as little as 1.5 blocks) from City Hall and being involved in both city and private community groups and having pleanty of things I could/should have supported or fought. Generally I'm just happy to sign a petition or send an email and let things shake out the way they will. Until these folks escalated it to this completely absurd level (Buckley and the WSJ was my tipping point).

I not only went, but stayed, spoke, and brought 2 of my Alexandria-resident friends...with only last minute notice. I'm having a potluck at my house before the next one :)

good for you Catherine and welcome to the world of bike activism!

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