What's So Scary About Bicycle Infrastructure?

4068337603_3c402f6acc.jpgBetter bicycle infrastructure is no threat to trucks. (Photo: Wayan Vota via Flickr)

Statements made by U.S. DOT Secretary Ray LaHood in recent weeks — including one regarding "the end of favoring motorized transportation at the expense of
non-motorized" — have gotten a lot of favorable coverage from members of the Streetsblog Network. But they’ve caused apparent consternation and anxiety in other quarters, including the trucking industry. You can find a variety of arguments on the new DOT position at the National Journal’s Transportation Expert Blog.

Today, network member Cyclelicious responds to some of the backlash to LaHood’s words, pointing what should be obvious: being in favor of bicycles as transportation doesn’t mean being against trucks. Here’s part of what he says:

American Trucking Association President Bill Graves is correct in telling us, "These [livable] communities will not be livable without an efficient highway system and trucks to deliver the food, medicine, clothing and other necessities that make walking and bicycling possible."

Transportation policies that encourage more dense development means money that previously was spent to serve sprawling outlying communities can now be spent on fixing the highways we already have. Policies that encourage "alternative" transportation for commuters means more room on the highways for trucks to deliver their goods.

Bicycle Transportation Examiner Adam Voiland has more links to Republican anti-bike rhetoric.

More from around the network: Human Transit on the difference between light rail and streetcars. Sustainable Cities Collective asks whether we should "’can’ the car or ‘green’ the car." And Copenhagenize itemizes the folly of bicycle licenses.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

What’s So Scary About Bicycle Infrastructure?

|
Better bicycle infrastructure is no threat to trucks. (Photo: Wayan Vota via Flickr) Statements made by U.S. DOT Secretary Ray LaHood in recent weeks — including one regarding "the end of favoring motorized transportation at the expense of non-motorized" — have gotten a lot of favorable coverage from members of the Streetsblog Network. But they’ve […]

LaHood Announces Safety Summits to Help Shape New Bikeway Standards

|
In 2010, DOT Secretary Ray LaHood mounted a table at the National Bike Summit and proclaimed, “I’ve been all over America, and…people want alternatives. They want out of their cars, they want out of congestion, they want to live in… livable communities.” He added, to thunderous applause, “You’ve got a partner in Ray LaHood.” Shortly […]

Has the NTSB Made a Single Recommendation on Bike Safety Since 1972?

|
The National Transportation Safety Board, whose current chair, Deborah Hersman, is the reported frontrunner to replace Ray LaHood as transportation secretary, is the federal agency charged with “assisting victims of transportation accidents and their families.” These are the people who investigate every single plane or passenger train crash. But NTSB doesn’t have much to say about the […]

AASHTO: New Rule Makes it Too Hard to Ignore Cyclists and Pedestrians

|
For years, state DOTs have exploited a loophole of federal government policy that allowed them to build massive, publicly funded projects without accommodating non-motorized users as long as they could show that “due consideration” had been given to bicyclists and pedestrians. But last year, USDOT gave that requirement some teeth. USDOT issued a directive specifying […]