Zig Zagging on Hennepin

It is my contention that poorly designed bicycle lanes are worse than no bicycle lanes at all. A case in point is downtown Hennepin Avenue with the freshly painted green stripe bike lanes. Because Hennepin meanders ( I understand it was originally a trade route from Lake Calhoun to the river) with varying widths, the bicycle lanes are at times on the right of 2 full width car travel lanes and at other times sharing a car travel lane. I am not against bicycle lanes as I recognize it encourages bicycle ridership on streets, especially with new riders. But I do object to the zig zag. When cars and bikes go from the 2 full width travel lanes and bike lane to the shared bike lane situation, there is a conflict. And this conflict further aggravated by the speed of traffic on Hennepin. My suggestions for improvement: A) Remove all of the bike lanes (covering the green paint) and put in place signage that encourages bikers to take the center lane; B) Remove the bike lanes (covering the green paint) on the narrow blocks only; or C) Paint the entire right travel lane green on the narrow blocks. I am curious as to what others think. Which option do you prefer and why? Or, do you like the current arrangement? Or do you have other ideas for improvement?

Bill Dooley

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