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http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2012704828_bikes24.html?prmid=obinsource

Bicycles banned in Colorado town
The quaint old mining town of Black Hawk, Colo., took an unprecedented step for a mountain community here: It banned bicycles from its main streets.

By Nicholas Riccardi
Los Angeles Times

BLACK HAWK, Colo. — At first glance, this quaint old mining town looks like many others that dot the hills and canyons of this mountainous state.

There are old brick storefronts, quaint Victorian homes on the hillsides and winding, narrow lanes corkscrewing up to the sky. But instead of Lycra-clad fun-seekers and shabby-chic shops, Black Hawk is filled with tour buses and casinos.

And this summer, the town took an unprecedented step for a mountain community here: It banned bicycles from its main streets.

It's the Colorado equivalent of outlawing motherhood and apple pie. The sports-crazy state's influential cycling organizations are horrified and vow to challenge the city ordinance both in court and in the Legislature. But Black Hawk, population less than 100, isn't backing down.

"It's an important issue to us, and we believe that Black Hawk should have the right to control its streets," said City Manager Mike Copp.

The problem: The roads were built for horses and buggies more than 100 years ago. Now they hold an armada of tour buses on the weekends.

The Legislature, at the prodding of cycling groups, passed a law in 2009 requiring that motorists give bikes 3 feet of space if passing. That would force traffic in parts of Black Hawk to veer into the wrong side of the road, Copp said.

Or, countered Dan Grunig, executive director of Bicycle Colorado, motorists could do what they are required to do on other narrow thoroughfares — treat bicycles as any other type of vehicle and simply wait behind them.

Part of the reason for the furor is that this speck of a town sits in the middle of one of the main bike touring routes through the Rockies.

The town's twisting main artery, Gregory Street, links Interstate 70 — the central east-west route through Colorado — with the scenic Peak-to-Peak Highway, which meanders north through aspen glades and glacial peaks before ending outside Rocky Mountain National Park, where riders can pick up roads back to Denver.

"It's a pretty wonderful street to bike on," Grunig said of Gregory Street. "A lot of communities would kill to have a street like that."

The only alternative route in Black Hawk is to either ride a gravel road or a 46-mile paved detour over the Continental Divide.



Black Hawk's Board of Aldermen approved the bike ban last year and it took effect in January, but police didn't begin to hand out tickets until June, when cyclists started their seasonal rides through town.

Jamie Webb was the first rider to get cited. She didn't notice the signs along Gregory with the image of a bicycle and a red slash through it, and figured she was being pulled over for speeding. Instead, Webb got a $68 ticket.

"I just don't see why they would do a thing like this," Webb said. "It's such a wonderful route."
 

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Yo no fui.
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Yup. There's a lawsuit challening the ban that's just begun.
 

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la dolce vita
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You'd only want to go to Black Hawk if you are poor, smoke, can't handle your addictions or you got lost off I - 70.
 

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Rider5200 said:
The problem: The roads were built for horses and buggies more than 100 years ago. Now they hold an armada of tour buses on the weekends.

So, instead of updating infrastructure and making public roads safe for everyone they can just decide to ban certain vehicles, sad. I'm sure the city has the money to make the necssesary improvements with all that money from their precious casinos.
 

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prosciutto corsa
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I did a double take when I saw this happened in Colorado.

Is the South going to ban shrimp and grits? Man, I am making myself hungry.
 

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It's a casino town nestled in the mountains... People only go there to satisfy their urge gamble and drink. Not really a big issue IMO. Most cyclists won't ride there because of the narrow streets anyway...
 

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Still On Steel
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mccurdy21 said:
It's a casino town nestled in the mountains... People only go there to satisfy their urge gamble and drink. Not really a big issue IMO. Most cyclists won't ride there because of the narrow streets anyway...
Maybe not a big issue in terms of the actual number of cyclists affected, but it could become a BIG ISSUE in terms of setting a legal precedent, should the ban be allowed to stand.
 

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More Miles...
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Allez Rouge said:
Maybe not a big issue in terms of the actual number of cyclists affected, but it could become a BIG ISSUE in terms of setting a legal precedent, should the ban be allowed to stand.
+1 Slippery Slope !!!
 

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Dreamer
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Or, countered Dan Grunig, executive director of Bicycle Colorado, motorists could do what they are required to do on other narrow thoroughfares — treat bicycles as any other type of vehicle and simply wait behind them.
Or, you could be a considerate biker and pull to the side, allowing backed up vehicles to pass if you're going much slower than them. :crazy:
 

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Mootsie said:
You'd only want to go to Black Hawk if you are poor, smoke, can't handle your addictions or you got lost off I - 70.
This. I am sure the machiens in Blackhawk/Central City are loose. However, you can go to Central City to the big pile of mine tailings an the edge of the town:thumbsup:
 

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Allez Rouge said:
Maybe not a big issue in terms of the actual number of cyclists affected, but it could become a BIG ISSUE in terms of setting a legal precedent, should the ban be allowed to stand.
Not so big, really. If they play the safety card ("for their own good"), municipalities and counties generally get away with banning whatever they want to ban from wherever they want to ban it. Failing that, they can require parade permits for "gatherings" on public streets and roads. Best to lay low and ride quietly on public roads while you still can.
 

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RoadBikeReview's Member
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J T said:
Or, you could be a considerate biker and pull to the side, allowing backed up vehicles to pass if you're going much slower than them. :crazy:
Preposterous! WE HAVE OUR RIGHTS!!!!!!!!
 
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