How’s this for irony? Some of those who are least impressed by the new bike lane on Second Avenue are the people it’s meant to protect.

The two-way protected lane completed in September, just days after a turning truck hit and killed a young mother on that very street, is a game changer. The $1.2 million project—along with another 10 miles of lanes the city plans to build over the next two years—confirms that Seattle is serious about bringing two-wheeled commuters into the mainstream. 

And yet some longtime bikers don’t want to be reined in. Take the alpha bike commuter who, at an SDOT meeting in August about bike infrastructure, stood up to say he still intends to bomb down main thoroughfares. 

It’s true. Going with the flow of traffic and obeying bike-specific lights will inevitably slow down bikers. But luckily for those who welcome both safety and the mainstreaming of cycling, cooler heads have prevailed. During an earlier community meeting about the city’s comprehensive plan, Cascade Bicycle Club policy and government affairs manager Brock Howell warned that bikers will have to give up some of the freedom they’ve enjoyed over the years.

The message: Grow up and learn to merge.

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