Grimes is considering a Mandatory Sidepath Law

The City of Grimes will hold the THIRD and FINAL reading of the uniform bicycle ordinance on Tuesday, September 25 at 5:30 PM.  They are adding a section that says:

Where a useable path for bicycles has been provided adjacent to a roadway, bicycle riders shall use such path and shall not use the roadway known as S James Street from the south Sports Complex to the south city limits of Grimes;

BICYCLISTS SHOULD CONTACT THE GRIMES CITY COUNCIL:  https://www.grimesiowa.gov/OurCommunity/MayorCityCouncil.aspx

You can read the whole proposal at http://tinyurl.com/8jmypux.

Grimes has a GREAT TRAIL, but this is a bad law.  The Iowa Code plainly states bicyclists have ALL the rights and duties of the operators of vehicles [321.234].  The code also says local authorities cannot make a law that conflicts with 321.234 [321.236].

THE IOWA BICYCLE COALITION HAS ISSUED A LETTER TO THE GRIMES CITY COUNCIL:

There are some unanswered questions:

  • Will they plow the trail for snow or can we use the roadway?
  • Does the city have additional liability by requiring trail use?
  • What about times of day where traffic is minimal (e.g. early Sunday morning)?
  • What about large and fast group rides not compatible with other trail users?
  • What about new developments that may create hazards?
  • What about trail maintenance?
  • What about motorists who drive across the trail intersections waiting to turn?
  • What do I do if I live or work on the opposite side of the trail?  Can I use the road to get to home or work?
  • Does the trail close at 10 PM?
  • Why are we circumventing the Iowa Code?
  • Won’t this confuse motorists and bicyclists on where they can or cannot ride?

We need cyclists in the Grimes area to go to the council meeting at 5:30 PM on September 11 for a second reading.  Let them know that you appreciate the trail, but that is no reason to pass a bad law restricting cycling on the roads.

 

 


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