To put it simply – no, it isn’t. Yes, statistically they can boast more miles of bike lanes than probably any other Orange County city, but the question is: what purpose do they serve? They’re fantastic for the weekend warriors who put on their spandex “Livestrong” jerseys and cycle for 50 miles, but what about everyone else? Given Irvine’s car-commuter friendly masterplanning, both cyclists and pedestrians are essentially eliminated from the equation. The infrastructure is biased towards vehicular usage and cyclists are forced to deal with extremely wide limited access roads where vehicular speeds are high, a lack of continuity (too many subdivisions/cul-de-sacs) and destinations (jobs, schools, stores, friend’s homes) are secluded and separated. It’s not so much about the number of miles of bike lanes, it’s about the city not being designed in a way that promotes the commuting and casual cyclists from getting out there and leaving their cars at home.
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