Coffee Talk - Bet Boulder wished they had a BRA now

Today's Coffee Talk returns to the discussion about a need for Boulder to get a BRA (Boulder Road cyclists Association). Given the current state, I believe it's worth recycling

We've discussed this before but the nay-sayers said things like , "A group like this would be great but why? Do road cyclists have access issues? Its not like Lefthand Canyon is off limits to road cyclists or that Boulder County is planning to build a new canyon road that only cars can drive on."

Well where are we now? The County has asked cyclists to stop riding on mountain roads which includes weekends and off hours. As one commenter pointed out, "It is reasonable to place some traffic limitations on county roads that are damaged and unsafe. However, I know of no basis why, for example, the county would completely prohibit bicycle access to a road such as Sunshine Canyon on a Sunday morning. An inspection of the road by car reveals no significant damage that would endanger cyclists, and very little traffic on a Sunday morning."

In a poll taken back in Feb of 2011, most readers agreed that a BRA for Boulder was needed

There are no organizations in Boulder who listen to the voice of the recreational road cyclists and now more than ever we need that voice. If you want an example of this just look to the Boulder Mountain Bike Alliance, they do an amazing job in opening up access and keeping access open for mountain bikers in Boulder. No doubt, Boulder has very limited access but without the work of BMA it would be worse. Yes, there is Bicycle Colorado, and they do good work but they have an entire state to cover and can't provide all of their attention to one county. If there is another organization and what have they done in regards to the recent closures?

But you may say that this need for a BRA is a short term need, once the flood damage is complete then we can return the the status quo... or will we? For the last 10-15 years Boulder County has appeared to be very pro cyclists considering all the shoulders they have added on many of the County roads, and that is great, but there is no requirement they do this. If a different county commissioner, transportation director or new philosophy were to come to the County's headquarters all could change. What is to say Lefthand Canyon won't become the next Hwy 6?

Closing roads to cyclists would be pretty extreme action for any official to take but that is where we are today.

As a final note, I don't expect the county to open up all roads right now, as the commenter said above, I understand safety and need to get roads rebuilt but do ALL of the roads need to be closed.. Sunday as well? This coffee talk isn't about changing the situation RIGHT NOW, this is more of a wake up call to the vulnerability we have within our political landscape. If we don't get a BRA then we need to make sure that we at least vote for those who DO care about cycling like Andrew Shoemaker.

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1 Comment

Yes, it is way past time for

Yes, it is way past time for Boulder County to have a BRA. Not only for road cyclists but for commuters and around-town cyclists too. The roads are only getting worse in the city and county of Boulder for cyclists and the leadership seems to be completely out of touch with the needs or desires of people who get around by means other than cars. This place has been known as a destination for bicyclists, and it's clear that in the 70s and 80s this place was a phenomenal place to ride, but if development continues to funnel more and more SUVs onto the main through streets while constructing only cul-de-sacs, there will be no good roads left to ride in 20 years. I would say already that Boulder is no longer even a top 10 city to navigate by bike (unless your destinations are right along one of the predominantly east-west bike paths). I think that we should consider:

1) Bicycle boulevards and/or protected bike lanes in town similar to what has been done in the East Bay and other Colorado cities like Aspen or European cities.
and
2) Bike paths connecting Boulder with Lyons and Golden.