Quite frankly, I’m sick and tired of people’s opposition to the proposed bike lane conversion on the Legare Bridge, and with the overall anti-bike sentiment held by many people in this town.
I used to think people held these archaic views due to lack of knowledge, so I always share statistical evidence and studies to help educate these folks. Yet, no one seems to accept what’s been proven in other cities around the country (and world.) Worst of all, many of these people are our elected officials at the city, county and state level who continue to “lead” us in a dangerous, costly and unsustainable manner.
If I may, please let me suggest what’s really needed to help Charleston:
1) All people deserve safe access across the Ashley River. Period. People should not care how long potential delays may be; everyone’s life matters and safe access is needed now.
2) Induced demand. Learn about it; it’s a very real thing. We cannot build our way out of traffic (especially not with I-526) but we can improve the current roads already in use (with much less money).
3) All vehicles in traffic are traffic. The only way to improve traffic is to create less of it, which means we need more safe and efficient options for people in order to get personal vehicles off the roads.
4) Building a new Ashley River bridge (whether multi-modal or just for bicyclists/pedestrians) would be extremely costly and time consuming. We need improvements now, and the lane conversion is the best option for the time being.
Ultimately, people are going to believe whatever they want to believe, but based on facts, there is only one clear decision — build the bike/ped lane now.