Share your pics, videos, streets, stories of what you find in the bike lane of the non-bike variety that has an impact on your ride and/or your safety. I've decided to keep it a little more open ended - cars, snow, buses, garbage, cabs, etc. If they shouldn't be in the bike lane, go ahead and add it to this thread. Please be safe if you are taking pics or video! :-)
My hope is that we can collectively build some evidence of what we see when riding in the city with the overall hope of better enforcement of "bikes only" and improving maintenance.
Update: More Hashtags to Capture Vehicles in the Bike Lane
With popular hashtags:
#LaneSpreading (Chicago Bike Selling)
#ClearTheWay (ActiveTrans), there are many options to capture violations.
We think you should use ALL of them AND post your photos on The Chainlink. ;-)
Is there any evidence that the calls, emails, & photos are having any effect at all? Have the numbers of blocking vehicles gone down? Is the City writing more tickets?
And they aren't going to because there are approximately 1,300,147 things more important than this to worry about.
i believe you nailed it, Dug. This in an exercise in futility, and i'm of the opinion it's a waste of bandwidth. The city doesn't care.
And here's some more evidence for that point of view. Today at about 5:40, on my way to Union Station, I passed the Police Training Center on Jackson and saw not one, but two squad cars parked in the bike lane.
It also perpetuates the perception of cyclists as whiners and cry-babies who want to own, not share, the road.
I wish people put this much effort into real bike advocacy or positive participation in the cycling community.
No problem sharing the 99.9% of the roads that are not bike lanes.
I do have a problem with the handful of motorists that decide that they need 100% of the asphalt. Letting these nitwits off gives the impression that cyclists don't really give a sh*t about our infrastructure, or our safety.
The infrastructure is what reinforces the concept that we don't belong on the 99% of the roads without bike lanes...
I understand what you're saying there, DUG, but there's also something to consider: the cry-babies in motor vehicles who want cyclists out of their way. Anybody who's ever been yelled at to stay in the bike lane (especially when it's physically impossible to be in the bike lane because something is blocking it) knows that to be all too true.
Somebody did just that to me.
Passed me with inches in a construction zone and yelled at me.
I discussed traffic laws with them at the light; they were not receptive and had a terrible evening because of that.
Since you obviously don't consider advocating for improved safety as "real" bike advocacy, what do you consider "real" advocacy?
I've written my alderman several times. I've spoken with numerous police officers. I've attended the Mayor's Bicycle Council and given them my thoughts. I've spoken with the head of the Chicago Finance Department. "Bike" lanes is a misnomer if it isn't reserved for cyclists. The law is very clear on this point. I don't see the point of spending money on "bike" lanes if they're just another piece of pavement that can be used by delivery trucks, taxis, Ubers, post office vehicles, police vehicles, municipal vehicles, landscaping vehicles, etc. whenever they feel it's inconvenient to find a legal spot to park. If you look at the photos carefully, you'll often see legal parking just feet away.