Jul 28, 2014
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Sharrows: Are you Cool with Your Kid Pedaling in Them?

The green lanes on Second Street are designed to be shared by cars and bikes, but how do you feel about your children riding one?

Sharrows: Are you Cool with Your Kid Pedaling in Them?

With the recent addition of a share-lane along 2nd Street and roundabouts placed along Vista in Belmont Heights, Long Beach is aiming to become a “bike-friendly” community.  What do you think of these additions and modifications?  Are they ingredients for a “bike-friendly” Long Beach or a recipe for disaster?  Do you allow your kids to pedal along the green lane on 2nd Street? 

Elizabeth Borsting

 When I first moved to Long Beach it was touted as the “International City.”  Since moving here as a college student back in 1986, I’ve seen the city go through several identity crisis as city officials grapple with what exactly they want Long Beach to be.  Wasn’t it just a few years ago that we were going to market ourselves as the “Aquatic Capital of the World?”  While I think making the city more bike-friendly is a good idea, I think that strip of green paint along 2nd Street is an accident waiting to happen.  I don’t want my 13-year-old son using the 2nd Street bike lane.  I’ve seen distracted drivers and people opening their car doors and nearly missing a cyclist.  On the other hand, I love the bike path along the beach.  As a family we’ll ride our bikes down to Shoreline Village and have lunch, and I feel safe doing so with my kids. 

 Patricia Tsoiasue

 I love that the city wants to be designated a bike friendly city.  Wanting to do something is half the battle. Long Beach has an old infrastructure that didn't leave room for bike lanes.  The sharrows are an experiment.  (trying a new solution to a problem is never a bad thing).  So... Now that we've tried the sharrows... Do they work?  I've seen folks use the sharrows on occasion, but not a whole lot.  I have to admit the sharrows are a bit scary for me, and I don't think it's a good idea for kids to share the road with cars on such a busy street. I think the sharrows were an interesting idea, but really, the traffic is too heavy for bikes to use them.  If they are to work, it would be on a less congested street.  To be honest, I would find them somewhat tricky for myself.  When I think of bike friendly, I think of separate bike lanes.

 

Susie Ridgeway

A. I am a pretty safety conscious Mom and I would never send my kids on the green lane in Belmont Shore on their bikes.  Number 1, there are too many cars going through the Shore; Number 2, there are too many cars trying to park or get out of their parking spot and Number 3, the drivers often are in a rush and have no patience for bikes in the bike lane and they go through the Shore too quickly.  I just don’t feel the green lane is safe enough for kids on their bikes.  As far as the roundabouts go, I don’t feel they are safe right now.  Cars go flying around the round about with no consideration of the other cars, I have almost been hit a few times and now.  I try to avoid the roundabouts at all costs.  I think there needs to be some education of drivers on how the roundabouts work!

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