Bravo Cleveland Heights!
Bravo to a new bike lane! Bravo to a safer North Park Boulevard! Bravo to one lane of traffic?
Yes, I think it's grand that North Park Boulevard is now officially one lane of traffic. I think it was a wise choice and one that should be applauded. Instead of an autobahn speedway we now have a normal road. I am a dog owner and we love the Doan Creek park area that runs all along North Park and up through the Heights. Each and every day I walk the Doan Creek Park and I see runners, hikers, cyclists on their way to work, and other dog walkers. I see these improvements as helping to protect each and every one of us and even the people driving cars as well.
Having bike lanes has numerous benefits; the most defined result is a reduced risk of crashes between cars and bikes. Interesting to note that studies have shown bike lanes are safer than trails or sidewalks for cyclists. Bike lanes also encourage cyclists to obey stop signs and streetlights and to avoid wrong-way riding. And a final point is that bike lanes have been proven to help define road space and the flow of traffic.
Before the lanes were defined there was a propensity for car drivers to drive two abreast on each side. As the road curved and narrowed near Roxboro Middle School a portion of the trail was only 2 feet from the road. In running or walking a dog, or even trying to use the road with your bike, you were perilously close to racing traffic. Even though there were no defining lane markers, it became a raceway where cars would drive closer to the edge and try to get four across.
Bravo Cleveland Heights for helping to keep all your citizens safe (and promote green energy along the way). Now, all we need is a trash can on that stretch to help cope with the litter and glass that is discarded there.
Tiffany Laufer is a filmmaker and the creative director for the Ohio Philharmonic Orchestra.