Opinion: San Diego Must Get Real About Reaching its Bike Commuting Goals Leave a comment

A new protected bike lane in downtown San Diego. Photo by Chris Jennewein

Count me among that small but dedicated group of San Diegans who embrace bicycling for its health and environmental benefits.

When I worked downtown, I often commuted 14 miles roundtrip from my Talmadge home. Now retired, I bike to doctor’s appointments in La Mesa and Mission Valley, and stores in North Park and Hillcrest.

It’s a rewarding challenge to climb those hills, and fun to see city life up close. But it’s also a bit demoralizing. 

That’s because I have so little company on my two-wheeled travels around our county. 

San Diego has spent millions of dollars for dedicated bike lanes, but from where I sit, the “if you build them, they will come” strategy has been an abject failure. Riding up and down the mile-long, multi-million dollar I-15 bike lane, I rarely pass even one other cyclist. Pedaling to and from Ocean Beach or downtown, I can often count the number of other cyclists on one hand. 

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