So I know they've had this bikeway for awhile, but I haven't had a chance to go down it. Today, with its nice weather seemed like the perfect day to go for a ride absolutely nowhere.
Gotta say I loved it. I didn't feel "ghettoized" or whatever other things people say about separated bike infrastructure. I would definitely like to see more of these in Austin, and hopefully if it hasn't been shot down yet, they'll make one along Mopac. I don't usually have a reason to go anywhere near Mopac, but if a bikeway was there, I'd probably go just because.
The one problem I had was when I came to an intersection. The sign said to use pedestrian signal. Fine. But coming eastbound on the bikeway, the walk signal button is across the other lane at the corner of the intersection. So, when I wanted to cross I had to get off my bike and push the button, then hop quickly back on to make the light. Not a huge inconvenience, but something to think about as they design other bikeways. Unless I missed something...
A perfectly lovely ride. I ended up being somewhere around Bookpeople, and had a nice convo with a young lady who was lost on her bike. She had the coolest purple wheels that I was very envious of, and had actually seen earlier in my ride. I really want to pimp by bike now. Ok going over to bicyclemuse.com to see some inspiration. Oh shit they have helmets that look like caps! Oh they are a hundred dollars....maybe not.
Anyway my ride couldn't be all good, so of course I almost got into my first bike accident. Some dipshits were going the wrong way on a 2 way street of all things, and they jumped out from the sidewalk behind a parked car, so we couldn't see each other. We almost had a head on collision. Me being my brassy self, told them they were on the wrong side of the road, just in case they were actually that stupid. I got your regular teenage boy cheek, but I'm sure they wouldn't have been laughing if I was a car and had run them over. This was in the downtown area so its not like we were in some secluded neighborhood. Oh, in case they read obscure blogs, I shouted, "Its daylight, stupid!".
Really though, this is something that I hope becomes rarer as cycling becomes more popular. At times for our safety we have to bend the rules, but they had no excuse, other than they are teenage boys and think they are invincible. I sincerely hope I don't open my Statesman and find because of their stupidity they've killed themselves.