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A bike lane that is dangerous by design

As a bicycle commuter, I read with interest the Nov. 10 Metro article “Another D.C. bike lane, and this one’s a bit tricky,” on the L Street NW bicycle lane. The problems arising from the coexistence of bikes and left-turning vehicles in a single lane will not be overcome through a “period of adjustment,” as D.C. Department of Transportation spokesman John Lisle suggested. The design of the lane runs contrary to its purpose of separating cars from bicyclists. I fear it won’t be until someone is killed or seriously injured that planners and the public will take note.

The design used for the 15th Street NW bike lane is safer for cars and bikes alike because it has designated signals while fully separating the two types of traffic. The L Street lane is an essential part of creating a bike-friendly city, but I worry that this design will create more headaches and confusion for drivers and cyclists alike, cementing the long-running tension between them. 

Matthew Huisman, Washington

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