Michigan: Two wheel revolution

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Thursday, February 07, 2008
By Yokota Fritz

Geysering fuel prices and the clamor for sustainable lifestyles and cityscapes bode well for bicycle commuters.

In 2007, Ann Arbor adopted a comprehensive non-motorized transportation plan calling for 56 total miles of bike lanes racing along half of the primary roads. There's an ongoing program of striping bike lanes on resurfaced streets; another six miles is scheduled for early this year. And all buses tote bicycle racks, making a seamless integration with mass transit.

To support these initiatives, 5 percent of Ann Arbor's state gasoline and weight tax revenues are earmarked for non-motorized transportation improvements; combined with the city's own funds, spending totals nearly $500,000 annually. "We're going to just keep on growing our system," says Transportation Manager Eli Cooper.

Cycling is merging into mainstream traffic. But Ann Arbor, despite its League of American Bicyclists "Bicycle Friendly Community" designation, still has some uphill roads. Kris Talley, chairwoman of the Washtenaw Bicycling and Walking Coalition (WBWC) points to the multitude of Michiganders unaware that bikes have a legal right to share the road. To that end, the WBWC is collaborating with Ann Arbor and its "Get Downtown" alternative transportation program on a "Same Roads, Same Rules" campaign, hoping to educate motorists and cyclists on the routes to road harmony.
Read more at Detroit Metromode. This wonderful article on what cyclists are doing in the state of Michigan also covers the Detroit suburb of Ferndale, MI, where the article writer apparently lives.


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