It Only Took 40 Years to Install Market St Bike Lanes

By Matt Baume
|  Wednesday, May 4, 2011  |  Updated 10:06 AM PDT
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It Only Took 40 Years to Install Market St Bike Lanes

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Better bike lanes are finally coming to Market, forty years after residents first started asking for them.

The new lanes have been roughly sketched out with spray paint and will be filled in soon. They'll need to be ready for next Thursday, the 12th, which is Bike to Work Day.

Market Street is the city's busiest bike thoroughfare, but many section lack sufficient safety for cyclists. The existing bike lanes tend to start and stop, squeezing bikes up against dangerous and undesirable modes of transit such as cars and trucks.

It was in 1972 that the Castro was slated to get protected bike lanes, but the city backed out of the plan even though the Board of Supervisors supported it 10-1, according to Streetsblog. It's taken decades of work for them to realize the error of their ways.

Along with the improved striping, Market Street has also acquired new green pavement and bike boxes at intersections. Those pavement markings serve as a visual cue to motorists to make room for bikes, which are a preferred mode of transit.

The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition is preparing for its biggest Bike to Work Day in history. They're recruiting an army of volunteers to staff stations all around the city, to raffle off prizes, and to distribute snacks and tote bags. They'll also be providing free basic maintenance at select locations.

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