LMPD, bikes, Bardstown Rd & Public Works

Approaching the Bardstown Rd & Eastern Parkway an airhorn (?) sounds just feet away from the bike’s rear tire. A quick glance over the shoulder identifies the source as a big dark SUV. The SUV passes and the cyclist realizes the vehicle belongs to LMPD. The LMPD vehicle stops at the traffic signal. The cyclist pulls up to the passenger side window. It comes down. There are two officers in the front. The driver: “Stay in the bike lane.” He is referring to those mysterious parallel lines one foot apart in the door zone. The cyclist: “That is not a bike lane.” The driver: “Stay off the road.” The cyclist: “Cyclists are permitted to ride in the travel lane.” The driver: “Stay off the road.” The cyclist: “Arrest me.” Repelled by the LMPD vehicle’s exhaust fumes and the motor’s 250 degrees heat, the cyclist advances ahead and in front of the SUV and waits on the light to turn green. The LMPD vehicle roars as it blasts past and to the right of the cyclist. On the other side of the LMPD SUV a father and his two young sons, straddle their bicycles on the sidewalk waiting to cross the road. The first cyclist pulls on to the sidewalk and conversation ensues. The father, grateful the driver did not lose control of the SUV, identifies the behavior as bullying. The first cyclist expresses the hope that the officer will vent to his buddies and that they will set him straight. Godspeeds expressed, we part.

Public Works. Several conversations concerning those parallel lines on the newly reconfigured Bardstown Rd have taken place with Public Works. One of those conversations was conducted from a cyclist’s hospital bed. Those lines serve no good purpose, they are mistaken by cyclists and drivers alike, and they generate conflict between cyclists and drivers. One of those lines must go.