Wisconsin town considering limits on walking, biking

In most areas of the U.S., the bicycle riders follow a simple mantra: "Same roads, same rules, same responsibilities." A dust-up in the town of Hull, WI shows that not everyone agrees that cars and pedal-powered two wheelers should share the pavement.

The Hull town public safety committee is debating a draft ordinance that would force groups of people who want to bike, run or walk on town roads to register their routes and plans beforehand, otherwise they will be banned from the public streets in the interest of safety. Needless to say, this idea caused a pretty big uproar across the country – some observers, like the Wisconsin Bicycle Federation, are pretty sure that ordinance would be illegal – and city officials are now saying that the plan is "extreme" and would only be implemented as a last resort to make sure everyone using the road is safe. According to local official statistics, though, the safety reasoning is suspicious: there has been no recorded incident of a crash with a bike or pedestrian since 2008 and only five pedestrian/car crashes and one bike/car crash in the last ten years.

There are a lot of angles to discuss here, and we fully expect a vibrant discussion in the Comments section below. To us, the key point is that no one should ever be limiting green transportation options, even if they perhaps require extra eduction of those who who need to learn new ways to interact with the evolving transportation landscape. When you're keeping an eye out for motorcycles, look for bikes, too, mmmkay? Also, who's up for a critical mass in Wisconsin?

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