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Remove bike lanes on West Bayou Parkway

This petition had 95 supporters

Many residents are very concerned with the recent re-striping of West Bayou Parkway to accommodate bicycle riders. The impact of the recent re-striping initiative not only affects residents of very large neighborhoods in the heart of our city, but also affects the entire community as many residents in Lafayette use West Bayou Parkway on a daily basis.  It is a very important corridor that allows for routine traffic movement through our city. We are concerned for the following reasons:

Traffic Congestion  The re-striping has created much worse traffic congestion on West Bayou Parkway than previously existed, and traffic congestion has been a problem on this road for a very long time, particularly at  peak travel times. West Bayou Parkway is a major collector street that concentrates traffic from very large residential areas running from as far away as Ambassador Caffery to areas in the Oil Center and beyond. As a major collector street, it is designed with a center/turning lane for traffic wishing to exit West Bayou into residential driveways and residential cross streets, allowing automobile traffic to continue unimpeded to other destinations. Lafayette Consolidated Government's own street maps show West Bayou Parkway as a major collector street. The recent re-striping has taken a major collector street with three (3) lanes and reduced it to a two (2) lane residential street.... all to accommodate the needs of bicyclers within our community. The impact on West Bayou Parkway has been to create greatly increased traffic congestion, encouraging drivers to "go around" stopped traffic, make dangerous maneuvers and tempers to flare. Specific areas along West Bayou Parkway have been significantly affected including at Doucet Rd., Shannon Road, Roselawn Blvd, Brentwood and South College Road.

Safety Hazards  Good traffic design should provide for effective and "safe" movement of automobiles from one destination to another. The increased traffic congestion without designated turning lanes off of West Bayou Parkway has resulted in motorists making unsafe traffic maneuvers to get around stopped traffic waiting to turn into residential driveways and cross streets.

UPS and FEDEX used the center lane for temporary parking when delivering packages. Now the entire lane is blocked when they stop.

One automobile ended up upside down in the front yard of the Moity's 607 West Bayou Parkway property. A month

ago, there was an accident on the corner of Shannon and West Bayou Parkway and yet another, yesterday, at the same intersection.

The newly striped bicycle lanes lead to a greater chance of conflict to both motorists and bicyclists (e.g. bicyclists are traveling in designated bicycle lanes and a motorist attemps to swerve around a car waiting to turn from the road). This outcome is inherently unsafe to both motorists and bicyclists. West Bayou Parkway was not designed or constructed to accommodate both motorists and bicyclists under modern safety design standards. Furthermore, the re-striping is non-continuous for the full length of West Bayou Parkway. This result is increased uncertainty and confusion for both motorists and bicyclists, leading to greater safety hazard concerns for both.

The Needs of the Many  We are not opposed to bicycle traffic in our community where it does not create traffic congestion and increased safety hazards. We fully support accommodating bicycle traffic in new street and road designs, and in older areas where retrofitting existing roads do not lead to the negative outcomes for the community. Making Lafayette a more pedestrian and cycling friendly community will improve the quality of life in our community for everyone, but not all existing streets can be successfully retrofitted by removing traffic lanes and merely re-striping the streets with designated bicycle lanes.

West Bayou Parkway probably handles about 15,000-20,000 cars a day providing a vitally important collector street in Lafayette. Although there are no statistics, probably at most, fewer than 100 bicyclists use West Bayou Parkway each day. Under those assumptions, bicycling represents less than 1.00% of total vehicle traffic on West Bayou Parkway. The decision to remove the turning lane from West Bayou Parkway, a city designated "major collector street", and use the street area to provide designated bicycle lanes has resulted in unintended outcomes. We respectfully make the argument in favor of removing the new striping for bike lanes... The needs of the 99% of residents who use West Bayou Parkway to routinely and safely travel through our city, should not be outweighed or compromised by the needs of 1% of our residents.

In conclusion, it is unfortunate that we cannot create a perfect community in which to live. It would be an ideal outcome to be able to accommodate the wishes and desires of 100% of all residents within our community without negatively impacting the rights and needs of others. Unfortunately, the best any of us can do is design and implement changes and improvements that work for almost everyone.

By this letter and the signatures included on the attached petition, we are requesting the removal of the newly striped designated bicycle lanes, and a return to the striping of West Bayou Parkway that allows for the less congested and safer movement of automobile traffic through our city.

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