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Working to make sure it’s not a vicious cycle: As National Bike to Work week ends, some local riders say they don’t feel safe
By Caitlin Coakley Today may be the end of National Bike to Work week, but many in the local riding community say that the traffic and road conditions in and around Charlotte aren’t helping to lure more pedal pushers. “I hear people say they would ride a bike on the streets of Charlotte, but they don’t feel safe,” said Martin Zimmerman, executive director of the Charlotte Area Bicycle Alliance It’s a chicken-or-egg dilemma, said Zimmerman. Motor vehicle traffic in Charlotte makes cyclists hesitant to take their two-wheeled vehicles to the streets, so drivers become used to having the roads to themselves. In Mecklenburg County, there were 128 reported bicycle crashes in 2007, according to the most recent data available from the North Carolina Department of Transportation’s division of bicycle and pedestrian transportation. One cyclist was killed, and 66 were injured.