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Interestingly, opponents of bike lanes close to AU also brought up biker safety as a reason NOT to add the bike lane. I guess the thinking goes that bike lane = more bikes on a road that they think is unsafe for biking no matter what the redesign. This ignore the fact that bikes are going to be there anyway, though.

On the one hand

Complete Streets, bike lanes as traffic calming, support for mixing bikes and cars, etc are all things that the City of Alexandria is committed to. It may feel better than arguing for the value of the parking spots, but I think its a weaker argument in defending the T&P board from the accusation that its not fulfilling the mandate of the elected officials of Alexandria. That suggests the way forward is to reach out to elected officials, and to change the make up of the board

2. OTOH - ultimately if we override local opposition, no matter how ignorant that opposition is, we will make it harder for our friends in local govt to support needed change. I would suggest instead the next step is to create a task force, including reps of the cycling community, City of Alex staff, and reps of the King Street homeowners, to review real expertise on cycling safety, and how that can be applied to this location. Walking tours of suggested alternate routes can demonstrate grade issues, etc. That will be costly for City of Alex (which would have to donate staff time) but I think could be ultimately more effective.

Note, I say the above, as a resident of FFX - we have a bike master plan in process, and we have dozens of potential "king streets" places where old thinking folks will oppose needed improvements. And recent "compromises" on several issues makes me worry that faced with such opposition, even our supportive elected officials will cave. We need to spend enough (friendly, positive) time with these people to cure the ignorance, if ignorance it is, or if its not ignorance, to put them in the position of admitting that these are the right things for safety, and its all about parking.

"But this is what lobbyists do… stand in the way of change that does not wholly benefit them alone."

This is a perfect description of what the bike lane opponents are doing, masterfully projected onto the bike advocates. Freud would be proud.

Mentioned in one of the Patch comments, but this particular LTTE is especially comical in that it was the bike lane opponents who first brought in "outside lobbying", in the form of the articles in the Wall Street Journal and the American Spectator. Ms. Papp completely destroyed her credibility by citing the "outside lobbying" right away in her letter without acknowledging that the bike lane opponents did exactly the same thing.

I bike to work from Huntington through Old Town M-F and I've never had any issues on King street. Traffic is usually so slow on King Street, that a bike lane seems unnecessary at best, and an expensive boondoggle at worst. I'd rather see designated bike lanes to increase cyclist safety on Washington and Duke streets.


The section of King Street where bike lanes are being proposed is just outside of Old Town, up Shuter's Hill past the Masonic Memorial. It will allow a connection the lanes on Janney's Lane and beyond.

In Old Town, I agree there is no need for bike lanes along that section of King. That section ought to be closed off to motor vehicles entirely.


This is not King Street in Old Town. This is King Street taking out out of Old Town--west of the Metro station up the hill towards TC Williams etc. That is the only east-west route in that part of the city and is supposed to connect Old Town and the Metro to the new lanes on Janney's.

The problem with Washington (I believe--please correct me if I'm wrong here) is that it is the GW Parkway and does not belong to the City of Alexandria. Ditto with Duke Street west of the Metro--it's a VA State Road there.

If you need to get east in Old Town, you can use Prince, and west you can use Cameron (though that is a bit out of the way if you need to be on Duke), or King itself within Old Town.

Catherine: Washington St belongs to the city from the Hunting Creek bridge (just south of the Beltway and Hunting Point) to 1st St (the signal north of Montgomery St/Powhatan St).

Officially, King St is also a "VA state road" (Route 7), but aside from the Beltway and I-395, the city has overall jurisdiction over the primary routes within the city (including Route 1 north of the Beltway interchange).

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