Andres Viglucci’s experience about the safety hazards of biking to work in Miami is so typical ( Biking to work a bust, Miami-style, March 22). I teach at Miami Dade College in Kendall, where many students bike to school, and almost everyone says that they, too, have been hit by a car at least once.
In spite of the road construction everywhere, I never see real bike paths being included. Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez can encourage people to bike to work, but it won’t happen until the county builds decent bike paths specifically for that purpose.
It’s not just a matter of educating drivers to be more polite. On a two-lane road with a 45 mile-per-hour speed limit posted, if I approach a biker, going much slower than the car, I am forced to abruptly veer away from the biker (having to drive inches away from cars coming the other way) or slow my vehicle down, hoping the driver behind me is paying attention and doesn’t slam into me.
The county needs to build real bike paths. Build them going to transportation hubs, to large schools and on main two-lane roadways. I suggest even building walled bike paths alongside expressway roads. Mayor Gimenez has the right idea, but without a clear plan for bike paths, National Bike to Work Day becomes a mere public-relations ploy, which will make no difference whatsoever in Miami-Dade County.
Marta Magellan, Pinecrest