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If Duluth is such a great outdoors city, where are all the bike lanes?

If Duluth is such a great outdoors city, where are all the bike lanes? 2020-10-02Leave a comment

electrical bike If Duluth is such an important outside metropolis, the place are all of the bike lanes?

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DULUTH – With greater than 80 miles of mountain biking trails slicing throughout the town, and at all times extra on the best way, Duluth is a vacation spot for no less than a sure sort of bicycle owner.

That’s nicely and good, Mike Casey thought, but when Duluth is the good outside metropolis why then do they solely have a few bike lanes?

Casey, himself a sustainable transportation advocate, requested the query as a part of the Star Tribune’s reader-driven sequence, Curious Minnesota.

“I’m simply attempting to deliver consciousness — we don’t have many bike lanes on this city, and the place we do they have been constructed with out bike advocacy on the desk for essentially the most half, in order that they don’t actually connect with a lot,” he stated.

Certainly Duluth has simply 12.5 miles of motorcycle lanes on the town’s 450 miles of roads, lots of them put in by the state or county on roads these businesses are answerable for — such because the Lake Avenue bridge or East Fourth Avenue.

Town has declined a number of alternatives so as to add bike lanes throughout latest main roadwork, from Superior Avenue downtown to East Eighth Avenue connecting hillside residents to school campuses. Metropolis officers and council members have lengthy sided with on-street parking wants.

“Why can’t we get this finished in Duluth? The enterprise neighborhood has mainly bullied the town into submission,” stated Alice Tibbetts, chief of the We Stroll in Duluth group. “We have to get to a tipping level the place our management is courageous sufficient to place up with all of the backlash.”

Retailers say giving up parking for bike lanes would value them enterprise, although research has shown gross sales enhance when bike lanes are added. Central Avenue in Minneapolis noticed a 52% enhance in meals gross sales after bike lanes have been put in, in response to the Nationwide Avenue Enhancements Examine.

Duluth’s comprehensive plan, the doc that’s alleged to information land use choices, says a “finest observe in transportation planning is to boost security of everybody on a road through the use of protected bike lanes.” Town at present has none.

Duluth’s first protected bike lane — separated from automobile site visitors by metallic dividers — is deliberate on W. Superior Avenue via the Lincoln Park craft district as a part of a Cross Metropolis Path detour throughout freeway interchange work. That project was delayed to next year, and so was the bike lane. The lane will solely be everlasting if the town finds it cost-effective to keep up.

“Companies must say they actually prefer it,” metropolis engineer Cindy Voigt stated.

A few fifth of Duluth residents stay beneath the poverty line — double the state common — and about 10% of households don’t have a automobile, larger than county and state charges. Tibbetts stated that makes bike lanes a matter of fairness and “a necessity for a metropolis that cares about everyone.”

“What are the frequent perceptions of what makes a metropolis bike pleasant, is it as a result of it’s flat, no winter, what’s it?” Tibbetts stated. “It’s as a result of there’s nice infrastructure. You possibly can’t be an important outside metropolis with out that.”

If you would like to submit a Curious Minnesota query, fill out the shape beneath:

Learn extra Curious Minnesota tales:

Who decides when the I-35W bridge is lit in color, and how is it done?

Why do some major Twin Cities highways not connect directly?

Why hasn’t Minnesota passed the Equal Rights Amendment?

Why do wild turkeys seem to thrive in the Twin Cities?

Why is Minnesota more liberal than its neighboring states?

When you flush a toilet in the Twin Cities, where does everything go?

Was Minnesota home to nuclear missiles during the Cold War?

Does Minnesota really have the worst winters in the country?

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