New SF Ordinance: Bikes Allowed Indoors

Sometimes I think bike owners take more pride in the set of clever security measures they have taken to secure every part of their bicycle when they lock up, than how flossy their actual bicycle is (which takes a close second). But then again this is San Francisco and you must invest in, at the very least, a good U-lock if you want to return to a fully functioning bicycle after coffee, drinks, even work.

Bike at Work, Photo from San Francisco Bay Gaurdian Online

The San Francisco Bay Guardian has a relevant article that may assuage some of your concerns.  “When the Board of Supervisors this week voted 9-2 to require commercial building owners to allow employees to bring their bicycles indoors while they work, ordinance sponsor Sup. John Avalos hailed the legislation as an important step toward meeting the city goal of having 20 percent of all vehicle trips in the city be by bike by the year 2020.”  This ordinance will be up for a final vote tomorrow, Tuesday, March 13, 2012.

Regardless of this good news for some cyclists, the title of the article, SF allows bikes indoors, but its cycling goal is elusive, gives away the meat of the article’s message.  There is a city goal of having 20 percent of all vehicle trips in the city be by bike by the year 2020 that would presume progress for San Francisco cyclists.  So why has progress been slowed or halted on potentially impactful projects for promoting cycling throughout the city?

Some revealing passages from the article:

“Whatever the current percentage is, we have a long way to go. We have to be bolder about specific projects and strategies,” [Board President David Chiu] told us. He said there is a growing recognition that promoting cycling is an important way to address traffic congestion and greenhouse gas reduction and that “segregated bikes lanes are the most efficient way to move the most people through areas of urban density.”

[Mayoral Press Secretary Christine Falvey] cited the Avalos legislation and the current installation of cycle tracks on JFK Drive in Golden Gate Park as examples of the city’s commitment to “move us toward the goal of 20 percent,” but many in the cycling community consider these efforts to be low-hanging fruit – easy, cheap, and non-controversial improvements – that won’t get the city anywhere near its stated goal.

Bike activist Marc Salomon is critical of the incremental approaches taken by SFBC and the city, saying that to make significant progress the city needs to address enforcement and the culture on the roadways, protecting cyclists from aggressive or impatient motorists and recognizing that many traffic laws don’t make sense for cyclists.

Read full article to find out more: http://www.bestofthebay.com/politics/2012/03/08/sf-allows-bikes-indoors-its-cycling-goal-elusive

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