After the rhetoric-laden intro to Richard Schmidt's opinion piece ("Socially engineered city," Nov. 23) about the proposal to redirect traffic on Chorro and Broad streets for the benefit of cyclists, I was surprised to find myself agreeing with him.
As a person who had ridden a bike in SLO for decades, those streets do not make me fear for my life. There are other places that do: a couple of them where cyclists have recently been killed. The traffic on Chorro and Broad, where the changes are proposed, has much slower traffic due to the many stop signs. On Foothill, lower Higuera, lower Broad, Tank Farm, Los Osos Valley Road, and Buckley Road, the faster traffic and the close proximity to the bike lane makes for a much more dangerous situation. These areas should take priority when attempting to make bike traffic safer.
I would love to see protected bike lanes in these areas. When so much of the traffic in town comes from people outside the city plus an aging population, cars are going to be a fact of life. You can encourage more cycling by having safer lanes in the areas that are most dangerous and by improving public transit. I hope the powers that be will direct their efforts to the areas that could really make the difference for those who would like to ride their bike in town but don't want to put their life in jeopardy.
San Luis Obispo