Eugene M. Simmons Jr.: Improve bus and bike lanes

April 5, 2014 

Talk about trains in and around Raleigh continues in The News & Observer, but are we ready for trains? Let’s take a look at our transportation other than automobile here in Raleigh.

Bicycles have been on our streets for over a hundred years, yet we have no dedicated bike lanes – only car lanes marked with bike images meaning “watch out for bikes.” We have buses and have continued to expand bus service, but we have no turn-outs for bus stops. What we have for buses are bus stop signs – often with no seating for waiters – and some bus stops are at stoplights. What excitement it is to come in traffic beside a stopped bus only to have the bus swerve out at you so it can make a left turn within a bus length of the stoplight. Maybe painting a car icon in those lanes would help bus drivers watch out for cars.

We are really not ready for a train system, beyond a trolley for downtown, because we have not prepared for bikes or buses, and there are no plans to take a train to the airport because the RDU Airport Authority bans the train.

I go to work, church, shopping, to friends homes and out of town. No train mentioned in planning would help me get where I go. Let’s put our money in bike lanes and bus turn-outs so drivers can continue safely on our way. We’re not ready or adaptable for trains.

Eugene M. Simmons Jr.

Raleigh

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