EDITOR’S DESK: Let’s ‘sharrow’ the costs, too

       Well, this could prove interesting, if the proposal for “sharrow” lanes on Uintah Street gets a high enough priority to receive funding (see story on Page 1). It seems likely, considering the advocacy within the cycling community and recommendations from both the Pikes Peak Area Council of Governments (PPACG) staff and its Transportation Advisory Committee. I'm willing to keep an open mind about the safety and functionality of such lanes. And we'll have to see if the greater empowerment to cyclists - which is what “sharing” a lane really amounts to - reduces the hostility that can occur when motorists stray too close to those remarkably strong, spandex-clad pedalers. Or maybe at such times, when a rider lifts a particular digit in the air, it's simply to indicate that he's “number one.”
       Anyway, there is a larger point here, which occurred to me as my eyes glazed at the dollar amounts associated with Uintah and the proposal to carve out bicycle lanes along 30th Street north of Fontmore. Between those two projects, we're looking at more than half a million dollars. Now, don't get me wrong. I'm not saying we shouldn't spend money to help bicyclists get around more safely. What I am saying is that it's about time, now that we're spending real money toward such ends, that the cyclists paid a little more into the pot, so to speak. Right now, the extent of that contribution is a $4 flat tax when a new bicycle is purchased. Sure, sure, these same riders may also own a car, and get soaked like everyone else with fees, taxes, renewals, etc. (much of which is used for transportation projects). But the bottom line, as the late Mayor Bob Isaac used to intone, is "user pay." Which seems to apply here.

- K.J.