I am a cyclist and can do whatever I want…Except in San Francisco

As a scooter rider who carefully obeys traffic laws, I am sometimes at lost of words on how bicyclists behave on the road. For instance, this little town of mine spent lots of money in upgrading the main road to provide dedicated bike lanes for the bicyclists to use. What happens? More than once I was almost run over by a bicyclist while walking on the pedestrian walkway. Maybe they feel safer while riding on the walkway. However, they are still on a vehicle and should obey the law. How about red stop signs? Oh, I think they don’t even think such signs exist for them. This kind of behavior may be peculiar to this side of the planet, given that we have been raised on “cagers.”

Therefore, I was a bit amused when I read this story in the Wall Street Journal. Of all places, the bicyclist coalition got their wheels stopped by a guy named Rob Anderson (see his blog here).

In a nutshell, San Francisco has a grand plan to booster bike lanes and bike parking. The city thought that given the liberal bent of the plan and the loud shouts of the bicycle coalition, everyone would fall behind the plan. However, as the Wall Street Journal report stated, San Francisco is also populated by people who have a mind of their own. So, Rob Anderson, a San Francisco resident, requested that the city carries out an environmental impact report (EIR). The city refused. Mr. Anderson sued. The court sided with Mr. Anderson.

As we all know, EIRs are usually used by opponents of public projects to delay or kill them. So, it is with a certain irony that Mr. Anderson is asking for an EIR on the basis that under the plan, bicyclists might cause more pollution. What? Are bicyclists the same as horses? On review, he does have a certain sense of logic. Anyone who have driven in San Francisco knows how hard it is to navigate around, even without bicyclists cutting in and out of your sight. As the city tries harder and harder for automobiles to navigate around, more pollution is generated by engines just idling around. This is one of the reasons that I seldom go over there.

Oh, by the way. The “El Visitador” who left a comment in Mr. Anderson’s blog is not me.

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