September 14, 2011
Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison
284 RUSSELL SENATE OFFICE BUILDING
WASHINGTON DC 20510
Dear Senator Hutchison,
As a retired Pedestrian and Bicycle Transportation Planner, and as a bicycling safety instructor, I am greatly concerned about the safety of those who use bicycles. Unfortunately, much of the money spent on bicycling infrastructure is worse than wasted. Many of the projects actually introduce hazards.
I urge you to SUPPORT any move to eliminate dedicated funding for the Transportation Enhancements (TE) program, and to OPPOSE an extension of the federal transportation act SAFETEA-LU.
My experiences since the institution of the original ISTEA legislation has shown the vast majority of Transportation Enhancement projects have little or no impact on transportation, and are exceedingly wasteful, costing up to five times as much as they would otherwise cost to construct. I have actually seen the City of Dallas build projects twice as fast without using Enhancements money, and for little more than the 20% local match they would have spent using Federal dollars. Claims that bicycle projects create more jobs than all-purpose roadway projects only underscores the inherent waste in these inefficient programs.
Until "bicycle advocates" stop pushing for all segregated infrastructure, no matter what hazards they produce, these projects should be stopped.
Their is a need for bicycling education - teaching people "defensive driving," to recognize and avoid potential dangers. But the current programs instead reinforce dangerous fallacies while they build hazards into the highway system.
Thank you for supporting real safety for bicycling. Please oppose these unwise projects.