TO THE EDITOR:
On the heels of the revelation that Chapel Hill, like Carrboro, is considered by the League of American Bicyclists to be a Bicycle Friendly Community (why, conspicuously, is it not “Bicyclist” Friendly Community?), I think it’s important that bicycle users are aware of the hazard that is the bike lane on South Columbia Street (there are other terrible local bicycle facilities).
My paper at http://bicyclingmatters.wordpress.com/local/bike-lane-on-so-columbia/ describes this section of road before and after the recent bike and bus lane changes and how it is now worse for bicyclists and other users.
The paradigm of separating bicycle drivers from other traffic has unintended negative consequences that are counterintuitive.
Indeed, much of bicycling is counterintuitive. This bike lane is an example of planning, or lack thereof, gone wild. I suggest that bicyclists should not use this bike lane or follow the poorly placed “shared-use” markings and instead operate down the center of one of the standard lanes.
Chapel Hill Resident