The last few weeks have been important for the drafting and solidification of the Master Plan for the Bicycle Action Committee. Amidst conceptualizations and revisions, a solid plan is in development to make sure that Miami is on an effective path to Bicycle Friendliness. An important factor for its development has been the participation of cyclists in a survey on riding in Miami. The results are an informative collection of the needs of cyclists prone to ride most days of the week.
The survey broke down into several lines of questioning. Form questions gauged riding habits and tendencies toward traffic mindfulness, which counterbalanced open inquiries as to where we need lanes and accommodations. Based on word-of-mouth, on-spot surveying during the July 12 Critical Mass, and a link on the Critical Mass Miami message board, about 100 cyclists gave an impression of the riding community and are currently helping to make the BAC’s work more effective.
Statistically, more than half of the participants were daily riders. Of these, almost all were commuters. Other motivations such as exercise and fuel economy were represented. Riders gaged the degree to which they are familiar with Florida bicycle laws and, more importantly, honestly answer as to whether or not they abide by them. Of the participants who claimed an complete knowledge of the laws, an admirable half admitted to following them most of the time. Good job, riders! I will try harder to follow your example.
Where on the roads are Miami’s cyclists riding? Almost all of them admit to staying on the street as opposed to the sidewalk. This is further good news, in my opinion. Sidewalk riding is an easy inclination to give into, but it does not ensure rider safety and puts pedestrians at risk for getting run down. Riding on the sidewalks also increases the likelihood of getting hit by unaware drivers, particularly as they haul ass in reverse out of their driveways or take a quick turn.
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There is a remarkable amount of survey data to cover. Next week, I’ll focus on the geography of ridership, according to the participants. Where are they riding? Where do they want more accommodation?
The survey is still up for participation. Check it out and lend a hand making Miami the bicycling town of which we’ve always dreamed!
- Adam Schachner