Raintree21

Charlotte trying to be more bike friendly

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BIKE ON OVER

1GET GOING: "Bike! Charlotte 2005," 10 days of events to encourage bicycle riding in daily routines, runs through Sunday.

2GO PROS, GO: Professional male and female riders hit uptown streets Aug. 6 for the 2nd annual Bank of America Invitational Criterium.

3RIDE FOR A CAUSE: The "24 Hours of Booty" annual ride, scheduled July 29-30 this year, fills streets surrounding Queens University with hundreds of riders raising money for charity.

4RIDE FOR A PAYCHECK: Pick a route to spin your bike to work with the help of www.bikementor.org, organized by Charlotte bike commuters.

5RIDE FOR A PRIZE: Bicycling Magazine gave 50 Charlotteans a new bike based on short essays on what they'd do with it.

6PARK 'EM: A new ordinance requires developers to include bike racks when building offices and shopping strips.

7STACK 'EM: Uptown has 47 public bike racks -- 39 installed by the city and eight by Bank of America.

8TAKE IT STRAIGHT ...: Charlotte has 20 miles of bike lanes, with more coming in the next year, Tippette says.

9... OR ROUND AND ROUND: A group of cycling enthusiasts, including Lowe's Motor Speedway President H.A. "Humpy" Wheeler, hopes to team with Rock Hill to build a track with steep banks for competitive racing.

10NOT JUST ABOUT NASCAR: Wheeler sponsors an annual time trial bike racing series at the speedway. He rides it, too.

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lol. chapel hill had a critical mass ride every week. i occassionally would see them meet at the morehead sundial. they were a bunch of characters. Of course, i didn't drive or bike, so it i was somewhat neutral. :).

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City honored for bicycle-friendliness

Charlotte was given an honorable mention as a bicycle-friendly city by the League of American Bicyclists. Only 16 cities in the nation are designated as bicycle-friendly. By giving Charlotte an honorable mention, the group indicated it expects the Queen City to one day reach the bicycle-friendly designation.

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Actually a biker got mowed down by a woman driving down Queen's Road this weekend. They interviewed an owner of a bike shop about this and he said that Charlotte is very bike unfriendly in the inner portions of the city. No bike lanes, uncaring drivers, and the police almost never ticket drivers who hit a biker. (As was the case in this incident)

If that poor guy had not been wearing a helmet, he might be dead now.

More here.

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I'm listening to a podcast of a recent episode of Charlotte Talks regarding bike lanes in Charlotte and was shocked to hear something as I have been told the complete opposite by everyone in the past.

The guests on the show were:

Martin Zimmerman - Executive Director, Charlotte Area Bicycle Alliance

Anthony Foxx - Charlotte City Councilman; Chair, Council Transportation Committee

Dan Gallagher - Transportation Planner, Charlotte Dept. of Transportation

They stated that Charlotte is one of the only places where riding a bicycle on the sidewalk is LEGAL. I have always been told that riding a bike on the sidewalk in Charlotte is illegal so I'm amazed to hear this bit of info. Anyone else aware that doing this is legal in Charlotte?

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I'm listening to a podcast of a recent episode of Charlotte Talks regarding bike lanes in Charlotte and was shocked to hear something as I have been told the complete opposite by everyone in the past.

The guests on the show were:

Martin Zimmerman - Executive Director, Charlotte Area Bicycle Alliance

Anthony Foxx - Charlotte City Councilman; Chair, Council Transportation Committee

Dan Gallagher - Transportation Planner, Charlotte Dept. of Transportation

They stated that Charlotte is one of the only places where riding a bicycle on the sidewalk is LEGAL. I have always been told that riding a bike on the sidewalk in Charlotte is illegal so I'm amazed to hear this bit of info. Anyone else aware that doing this is legal in Charlotte?

I had always heard it was illegal as well but I looked it up in the City Code and apparently the only place it is illegal is downtown in the "congested business district."

Sec. 14-251. Riding on sidewalks.

It shall be unlawful to operate a bicycle upon the public sidewalks located within the congested business district as defined in section 6-431. However, police officers acting in the discharge of their official duties are permitted to operate bicycles upon all of the public sidewalks in the city, including those sidewalks located within the congested business district.

Sec. 14-253. Brakes required.

It shall be unlawful to operate a bicycle on a street, alley, sidewalk or public highway of the city, unless it is equipped with a braking system in sufficient working order to control and stop the movement of the bicycle.

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I cycled all over Charleston when I lived there. All over downtown when I was in college and then to Sullivans Island when I lived in Mt P. I loved it but retired when I moved here. Just does not feel safe enough for me so I stick to running. Also it's easier to ride on flat land with no hills! Charlotte is making progress but everyone agrees we have a long way to go. Even in the supposedly bike friendly areas like East below Scott there have been many close calls and accidents. Riding a bike is not an accepted mode of transport in Charlotte. Cycling is still considered exotic or a vanity sport. Therefore, motorists feel superior to them and most show little respect on the roads.

Edited by voyager12

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...Cycling is still considered exotic or a vanity sport. Therefore, motorists feel superior to them and most show little respect on the roads.

My take is that the growth of cycling - especially in Charlotte - is hurt by bicycle clothing. When most of what you see are people speeding around in all the garb on high-end touring bikes, it takes on the appearance of vanity and makes cycling seem very intimidating. I myself (and, I suspect, others on UP) am content in shorts and a t-shirt.

Anyway, the main reason I am bringing this thread back up is a map I saw when I was in Atlanta recently: http://www.atlantabike.org/files/DT%20MP%2..._2008-09-25.pdf (PDF). Folks got together and rated various roadways around mid/downtown Atlanta with a simple red/yellow/green system. I like the simplicity of it, especially compared to the Charlotte bike master plan documents. It makes biking seem much friendlier and more accessible.

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The map in the bike master plan is different, since its made for planners and engineers to use. The map for the public will be much simpler from what I understand.

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I created a Google map of bike lanes and greenways in the city. The data comes from the bike lane plan which lists current (as of 2008) bike lanes, and all the greenways listed on the Charmeck greenways page. I also added some bike lanes in Meck county that aren't listed in the city's bike plan, such as Davidson. However, I'm not too familiar with many areas such as Pineville, Huntersville, etc. so I may be missing some.

Here are a few area I'm not sure about. I'd love some input so we can have the map up to date.

1) Is the old railroad bed between 77 and BofA stadium been converted into a greenway? I believe the section between Graham and Cedar is accessible at least.

2) What the latest on the midtown area? I have a bike lane between Kenilworth and Kings, have any more been added in the area? Also, I have the Sugar Creek Greenway stopping at Morehead - I don't think the midtown section is open yet?

If anybody knows of any more bike lanes in Meck county let me know where and I'll add them to the map - I'll still trying to update and tweak the map right now.

EDIT: Crap, it isn't saving any of the new lines I created today. Maybe I've reached a line or number of points limit or something. It took removed about 3 hours of work.

Edited by InitialD

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^Within the vicinity of Midtown, Elizabeth Avenue has bike lanes now between Kings and Charlottetowne, plus there are bike lanes on 10th between Siegle and 12th.

Upon its resurfacing later this summer, Hawthorne should get bike lanes from 7th to Central. And as an overland connector for Little Sugar Creek Greenway, eventually the 7th Street bridge over 277 and McDowell north of there to 10th as well.

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This looks great! One stretch of missing bike lane is on a road that STILL hasn't made it into Google Maps yet. Over by Scaleybark station, DeWitt Lane was extended all the way to Clanton Rd and has bike lanes on either side. Clanton also has bike lanes from South to DeWitt Lane. The idea is that you can use the bike trail all the way to that point, then switch to the bike lanes on Clanton to DeWitt.

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Thanks, I'll add those. I noticed the map WAS saving my additions, but there are so many lines you have to click to the second page to see them all.

I wish the county compiled a resource like this, because the city bike plan only has the city limits, and greenways are on another map(s). Plus a PDF map isn't as easy to use as Google. The addition of bus stops in the map has been wonderful. Now we just need to get bike lanes and greenways in it.

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I created a Google map of bike lanes and greenways in the city. The data comes from the bike lane plan which lists current (as of 2008) bike lanes, and all the greenways listed on the Charmeck greenways page. I also added some bike lanes in Meck county that aren't listed in the city's bike plan, such as Davidson. However, I'm not too familiar with many areas such as Pineville, Huntersville, etc. so I may be missing some.

Here are a few area I'm not sure about. I'd love some input so we can have the map up to date.

1) Is the old railroad bed between 77 and BofA stadium been converted into a greenway? I believe the section between Graham and Cedar is accessible at least.

2) What the latest on the midtown area? I have a bike lane between Kenilworth and Kings, have any more been added in the area? Also, I have the Sugar Creek Greenway stopping at Morehead - I don't think the midtown section is open yet?

If anybody knows of any more bike lanes in Meck county let me know where and I'll add them to the map - I'll still trying to update and tweak the map right now.

EDIT: Crap, it isn't saving any of the new lines I created today. Maybe I've reached a line or number of points limit or something. It took removed about 3 hours of work.

1- That section is still a rail bed. There are still plans to convert it to a greenway though. They have to shift the existing greenway off of the tracks (that are under the gravel) before they can work on the new section.

2- I dont see Little Sugar Creek Greenway at all through Freedom Park, but the Midtown section is not open yet.

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Where can I find a list of bike routes? The city installed signs in my neighborhood a few weeks ago but I can't seem to find any info on Charmeck.org Does anyone know where route 10 goes?

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Where can I find a list of bike routes? The city installed signs in my neighborhood a few weeks ago but I can't seem to find any info on Charmeck.org Does anyone know where route 10 goes?

Reportedly, brand new bike maps are being released by the city very, very soon.

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10 goes from the Walmart on Wilkinson through Camp Greene, Berryhill, Seversville/Five Points and over to the Greenville area on Oaklawn.

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Yeah, they have it every year. It is supposedly one of the biggest criterium races in the U.S. The professional women race 25 miles starting at 5:30 and the professional men race 50 miles starting at 7pm

HOLY CRAP. This thing was amazing! They said this is the biggest in N. America.

I hope the "O" has pictures for you all to see.

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You can find an assortment of videos from past Criterium's on YouTube. There's only one that I can find from yesterday. Watching them fly back and forth down Tryon was a lot of fun. If you positioned yourself just right at the end of turns (the crowd was definitely lightest over by the Levine Museum), you could stand right where they would all almost brush the railing. People who would lean on the railing would jerk back because they thought they were about to be hit.

* Oh, and I am totally for an F1 race in Charlotte now

Edited by tozmervo

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