By Doni Glover, Publisher
(BALTIMORE – October 25, 2023) – From the perspective of African Americans in Baltimore, the introduction of bike lanes has added significant complexity to the lives of indigenous Baltimoreans. This issue extends beyond just bike lanes, as it involves a perceived imposition of changes without adequate community involvement. Baltimore City is currently proposing the expansion of sidewalks to reduce car traffic on various streets within a city where the Black population comprises 63%. However, these traffic-calming measures have led to daily traffic backups on North Avenue at Mt. Royal. Driving along 28th Street in the direction of Remington feels like a journey through time, exacerbated by the presence of speed cameras immediately after exiting the bridge.
It appears that there is a broad impact on drivers who are already burdened by high insurance costs due to the very act of living in the city. Residents of Har-Bel (Harford and Belair) are also expressing concerns about bike lanes. It seems as though external individuals with their own vision for Baltimore have imposed their plans on the city, leaving many indigenous residents feeling voiceless.
It’s worth noting that, despite the frustration, many people in Baltimore, regardless of their race, have raised similar concerns. There is a genuine respect for bikes, but there’s also the recognition that people often need to drive their children or elderly family members across town, making car travel a necessity.
The transformation of three-lane streets into single-lane options, coupled with strict enforcement measures by MTA police, has created a situation that leaves people feeling angry and inconvenienced. Long lines of idling cars on North Avenue for miles are not environmentally friendly, which is clear to anyone observing the situation.
It’s evident that these bike lanes and the installation of flex posts, which are white plastic sticks placed at street corners, are not serving the interests of many Baltimore residents, including the author. As the city moves forward, it is hoped that greater consideration and inclusion of the perspectives and needs of all residents will be prioritized.
The author encourages everyone, regardless of their background, to participate in the upcoming hearing at City Hall to voice their concerns and opinions on these matters, as they will be doing themselves.
Let’s have the discussion. BMORENews.com will publish your opinion, pro or con. Email to email@example.com.