Roads in need of repair cost California drivers $61 billion (yes, billion) every year in the form of additional vehicle operating costs, the cost of lost time and wasted fuel due to congestion, and the financial cost of traffic crashes, according to a report released this month by a national transportation research organization.
Here are five reasons why the condition of our roads matters for people on bikes:
– People on bikes are hurt in crashes caused by hitting or dodging potholes and broken pavement.
– People on bikes are hurt and killed in collisions with drivers who hit or try to dodge potholes and broken pavement.
– Rough roads discourage people from traveling by bike instead of driving, and that keeps too many cars on the road.
– People on bikes, like all other Californians, suffer the health effects of breathing air polluted by traffic congestion resulting from poor road conditions.
– Most people on bikes also drive cars.
Road maintenance is essential to providing safe conditions for bicycle transportation. We need adequate funding to keep our roads in good repair.
Last year California enacted the first increase in the state gas tax in a generation, with the goal of funding a backlog of roadway repairs and other improvements. Click here to read more about this new revenue source, including the local roadway projects being implemented throughout the state with this funding.
The protected bikeway on J Street in Midtown Sacramento, the 2 miles of buffered bike lanes being installed on Mack Road, and the proposed Two Rivers Trail in the American River Parkway near East Sacramento are prominent local projects funded with the new gas tax revenues.
A November 2018 ballot measure called Proposition 6, whose largest donors are 7 Republican congressional and gubernatorial campaigns, seeks to repeal the funding. SABA is part of the coalition of 300+ organizations, businesses and public agencies united against Prop. 6. Please consider joining the No on Prop. 6 coalition and also encouraging those in your network to do the same.
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