The county issued an open letter to cyclist riding the loop this week. In it, the county requested cyclists respect other users on the loop and work hard to make everyone feel comfortable on the path system.
According to county officials they have been receiving complaints from pedestrians who say they do not feel safe on the loop because of some cyclists and their behavior.
Here’s the letter in full:
Open letter to cyclists using The Loop
Please help us prevent having to place prescriptive restrictions and regulations on your usage of The Loop.
The Loop is a recreational, multi-use facility that should be enjoyed by all users of all abilities.
As cyclists, you are by far the most numerous users of The Loop; and you also travel at the highest rate of speed relative to the other Loop users.
The Loop is not intended to be a racetrack or serious training ground for cyclists, either singularly or in groups. If you’re that good, or that fast, you should be on the road – not on a recreational facility.
Please be courteous by controlling your speed, particularly in congested areas or areas with limited sight distance.
Two practices will go a long ways towards ensuring the enjoyment and safety of all Loop users.
1) When you are overtaking any other path user, call out “PASSING” and, if you have one, ring your bike bell.
2) Do not overtake another path user if there is oncoming traffic/path users – same rules as if you were driving a car (i.e. you wouldn’t pass into oncoming traffic on a two lane roadway, right?).
We do not desire to further regulate Loop usage by installing speed limit signs nor do we desire to have to redirect limited public safety resources to provide enforcement of speed limits – when all that is really needed is for path users to exercise a little trail etiquette and practice a little common courtesy.
Yes, we know some pedestrians and dog-walkers create problems, too, when they walk 3 or 4 abreast, abruptly change directions or don’t control their dogs/dog leashes. We expect them to clean up their act, too, because they are no doubt reading this letter as well.
One final note to ALL Loop users – as much as all Loop users feel a sense of ownership and entitlement to use The Loop, The Loop path is first and foremost a maintenance access route for County service vehicles, particularly Parks department vehicles and Flood Control District vehicles. This has been the case since the mid-1980s when the Flood Control District installed the soil cement bank protection along many of the regional watercourses and then, working cooperatively with the Parks department, began establishing the riverpark system. In short – all users should yield the right of way to County service vehicles.
This is something I’ve written about in the past and it hasn’t really gotten any better.