Thursday, July 18, 2024

The woman who drove into me while I was riding my bike between Porter and Harvard squares was very apologetic. She just didn’t see me when she pulled across the painted bike lane and knocked me off my bicycle. I wasn’t killed like the young woman in Inman Square or the older man in Porter Square, but I was banged up and very shaken. I stopped riding for a while and avoided Massachusetts Avenue for longer, choosing different restaurants and shops.

These days I’m riding on Massachusetts Avenue again because of the protected bike lanes. I ride to work on the Hampshire Street protected lanes. But whether I and others – parents, kids, new riders – will be able to continue to get around Cambridge safely depends on the upcoming City Council election.

Candidates Joan Pickett and John Hanratty are two of the plaintiffs who sued to overturn the Cycling Safety Ordinance. Pickett wants to “hit the pause button” on implementing that law. Incumbents Paul Toner and E. Denise Simmons have sponsored multiple policy orders to delay installation of protected lanes. These candidates would set Cambridge back. They are wrong for a city committed to eliminating injuries and deaths from traffic crashes and they are wrong for a city serious about addressing climate change.

Arah Schuur, Walker Street, Somerville