Comment 34072

By Borrelli (registered) | Posted September 23, 2009 at 14:29:31

Yeah, sorry if this isn't appropriate for the comments, but my internal skeptic woke up when you stated there's a 'proven' way to do something. Happy to continue this offline or whatever.

And these are great sources, but none of them "proves" that infrastructure development works alone. Post-hoc analysis of NYC ridership and casualty numbers only highlights an association but says nothing of its causes or concommitant contextual changes. I'm pretty sure this audience doesn't need a correlation ≠ causation speech, so I'll refrain.

However, none of these sources answers the question: how do we get a skeptical demographic on to bikes in the first place and increase traffic flow? You assert that merely having infrastructure in place is enough, and while you're probably right that having infrastructure present will result in increases in ridership, I see no evidence that infrastructure alone has this effect universally--it appears (to me) necessary, but not sufficient.

I mean, those websites pretty well lay it out: the Dutch and Danes used road design and other policy and planning interventions to create a safer system of roadways, and the Americans have issued a lament for the bicycling culture of the 50s and 60s while the Danes use cultural intervention (hugging non-helmet wearers) to increase awareness and safety. I'm suggesting that we're a long way off from having either in Hamilton/GTA and that socio-cultural intervention may be an appropriate compliment to creating more bike lanes.

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