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Just to point out something, and I realize that "anecodotal" observation is not systematic and can be criticized accordingly... I rarely see bikeshare users riding in bike lanes.

That's the function of a couple things. Mostly bike lanes appear to be are designed for "long stretches" or are on roads that aren't convenient to bikeshare type bikes or the kinds of trips that the bike lanes serve.

The real issue is that DC is designed in a grid roadway system and that network of streets, with or without bike lanes, provides a wide variety of alternatives with less traffic as well as multiple routes to get to places.

But there is no question that beginning to develop a separated bikeway infrastructure is key to making biking as transportation more appealing to those demographics that express willingness to bike, but aren't willing to do so in high traffic, high traffic speed situations.

Bethesda and Silver Spring are decent places to have bike share stations, although the grid there isn't as conducive as it could be by comparison to Alexandria.

Frankly, the issues about use are more significant than the presence of bike lanes. Bikeshare is intended, at least in Europe, to complement transit, and for commuters. It doesn't appear to be used that way all that much in DC. It's more used by in-city residents + tourists. I don't see how bikeshare will be used as transportation all that much in Bethesda, as there aren't a lot of residents there, and many of the buildings are within walking distance of Bethesda Row or the Metro anyway and it's not clear that providing bikeshare to get to destinations beyond those places can be accommodated by adding stations on the outskirts.

Silver Spring has some tough issues too. South of Colesville Road, the tracks force most mobility westward to either East West Highway or Colesville Road. Maybe people west of the Metro station want bike access to get to the Ellsworth Ave. area more quickly. But it's pretty expensive to provide enough bikes to accommodate them, plus is it a worthy use of transportation money.

In either case, the likelihood of commuters coming into the stations and then using bike share is minimal.

by Richard Layman on Dec 15, 2012 10:40 am • linkreport

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