Sometimes when I hear about great bike infrastructure in other cities I’m tempted to move hundreds or thousands of miles away. Truthfully, in Boston, sometimes it doesn’t mean moving hundreds of miles. Sometimes it’s matter of going 2 blocks.
That’s because metro Boston is really a bunch of towns/cities very close together. Each one has different levels of bike-ability. Because of this, when biking in the metro Boston area you can experience many different approaches to bike infrastructure… sometimes one after another on the same road.
Making this even more confusing, even within a city the bike-ability varies. There are different neighborhoods with different personalities, some neighborhoods that get a lot of attention, and some neighborhoods that seem totally forgotten. And not all roads within a city are owned by a city. There are different agencies which also have different approaches to infrastructure on their roads. As a bicycling citizen it’s really hard to figure why there is so much variation. Who who owns what? Who do I email if I have a safety or bike concern? Who is responsible for making improvements? It’s really hard to figure out, there’s a lot of guess work.
And I wonder if it’s this complicated in every city.