Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Ray LaHood and bicycles

Good news:

[Transportation Secretary Ray] LaHood says the government is going to give bicycling — and walking, too — the same importance as automobiles in transportation planning and the selection of projects for federal money. The former Republican congressman quietly announced the “sea change” in transportation policy last month. . . .

The new policy is an extension of the Obama administration’s livability initiative, which regards the creation of alternatives to driving — buses, streetcars, trolleys and trains, as well as biking and walking — as central to solving the nation’s transportation woes.
Imagine: policies that emphasize alternatives to the car. Good on the Obama administration and Ray LaHood. But I can hear it already: the government wants to take away your vehicles. Communism! Socialism! Bicycles!

comments: 3

Daughter Number Three said...

One day, I was sitting with my bicycle waiting for a bus on the University of Minnesota's West Bank campus. (They have those buses that allow you to load your bike outside under the windshield.)

The bus stop is at one end of the lower level of a double-decker bridge across the Mississippi -- almost like a concrete tunnel, usually full of cars whizzing past. It's an inhuman space, very unfriendly to pedestrians, complete with concrete barriers and chain link fences at the median.

For a minute, though, there was a break in the traffic and I had a vision that there were no cars any more. That the road was for bicycles. It was the oddest thing, because until the next car came speeding along, it seemed real.

Michael Leddy said...

I know what you mean. When my little college town empties for vacations, it’s sometimes possible to ride right down the middle of a street for a long stretch — no cars.

Elaine said...

The Death Panels will be sharing space with the Vehicle Panels that plan to confiscate your gas-guzzling automobile and replace it with a big, clunky Huffy!