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Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Will the City Council Finally Fully Fund Bicycle Safety?

Posted by on Wed, Sep 3, 2014 at 1:29 PM

Sher Kung's fatal crash on Friday marked the 61st collision on Second Avenue between a vehicle and bicycle in the last four years, according to recent statistics from the city's transportation department. Half of them occurred when vehicles were turning left from Second Avenue onto cross streets.

Collisions have slowly increased in Seattle as cycling has become more popular and streets have grown more congested; there were 352 collisions in 2011 and 407 in 2012, the most recent years the city has data for, the vast majority of which resulted in injuries.

Cyclists surrounded a memorial for Sher Kung last Friday on Second Avenue and University Street, where the cyclist was killed in a crash with a box truck last week.
  • DH
  • Cyclists surrounded a memorial for Sher Kung last Friday on Second Avenue and University Street, where the cyclist was killed in a crash with a box truck last week.

Despite the alarming trend, the Seattle City Council has spent less than half the money required to fund our city's Bicycle Master Plan, an official commitment codified in 2007 to improve bicycle safety infrastructure.

The council renewed the plan earlier this year, which creates a fresh opportunity to make the city safer. But the council's track record is one of succumbing to anti-bicycle rhetoric about a "war on cars" and gutting money for bike safety while, conversely, allocating hundreds of millions of dollars for new freeway and street projects.

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