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January 16, 2010

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Home » Metro » Public Services

City urged to build more bicycle lanes

MEMBERS of the city's top advisory body are urging the city government to build more bicycle lanes.

Two members of the Shanghai Committee of the Chinese People's Political Consultative Conference put forward the proposal to the upcoming annual CPPCC session as the city is aiming for a low-carbon emission World Expo and bikes remain a major means of transport.

"Still many residents are willing to ride bicycles as a way of low-cost transportation and a healthy lifestyle," said Zhou Rong, one of the two CPPCC members.

"If more people can use bicycle lanes, the city will probably have much smoother traffic on its main roads."

Zhou said about 28 percent of the city's total population are using bicycles to go to work or school, or for recreation and exercise.

However, the city has a total of just 40 bicycle lanes and 57 roads forbidden to cyclists.

On several major roads, where bicycle lanes are part of the highway, motor vehicles stray into the bicycle lanes, or even park on them, making it even more dangerous for cyclists.

Bicycle lane restrictions have been regarded as a way to save space for bus lanes because buses can take more passengers than bicycles.

On the other hand, when cyclists ride on the sidewalk, it causes problems for pedestrians.

"To encourage more residents to ride bicycles doesn't contradict the city's 'public transportation priority' policy," said Zhu Jianguo, another CPPCC member.

Zhu said urban planning should include bicycle lanes so residents can be free to use their bikes. The pair suggest revenue from car plate auctions should fund the planning and construction of bicycle lanes.


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