If you ride a bike in Los Angeles, you know how much better it could be if the authorities did more to promote cycling and discourage motor vehicle use.
You have probably heard the arguments on why it is a bad idea or won’t work numerous times. Yet, the anti-cycling arguments lack a solid foundation. They are typically nothing more than a myth.
Here are some rebuttals to common myths
Streets For All is an organization that aims to make the streets safer for pedestrians and cyclists. As part of that, they provide accurate information to tackle the false propaganda car lobbyists peddle. For example:
- I need my car: In places such as Denmark and the Netherlands, people do just fine without cars. They use their bicycles to do the school run, go to the grocery store and much more. It is easy because their governments made cycling rather than driving a priority.
- Cycling is too slow: 10.8 mph is the average speed you will get around by bus. That does not include the walk to and from the bus stop. Most people can cycle at that speed and save time by not going to a bus stop or waiting for the bus to come.
- It is too far to cycle: The average trip in L.A. is less than five miles, which is well within most people’s cycling capability. Remember, the more you cycle, the fitter you will become.
- If I cycle, I’ll be breathing in bad air: Yes, you will. But you already do and will continue to do so until LA takes action to reduce the number of polluting vehicles in the city. Cities that prioritize cycling show an average 14% increase in air quality.
Cycling is not always easy in Los Angeles, but there is no reason it cannot become so. Until the authorities decide to prioritize it, you will always run the risk that you need legal help because a driver knocked you from your bike.