Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Bicycles in Carbondale

One of the big problems with expanding bicycling in Carbondale is that, unlike automobiles, bicycles do not generate any direct revenue with with to fund improvements tailored to their use. Autos have to pay for licenses on an annual basis, gasoline, which has a hefty motor fuel tax added, and parking fees, which go back into repairing lots. Though bicycles in Carbondale are supposed to register and pay a nominal fee for this, most bicyclists do not. Unlike cars, bicycles do not generate any revenues to pay for making Carbondale a more"bike friendly" city.

Ergo, any resources provided by the city for bicyclists, such as bike racks, lanes or signage, have to come out of either the city's general fund or motor fuel fund and, while it is good to encourage more people to bicycle, the less money comes into city coffers to maintain roads and infrastructure.


  1. Numerous studies show that bicyclists spend more money, and more money locally than motorists. They eat more calories and they have more possibility for stopping on a whim at a shop. Furthermore, if they are local, they reduce car usage and lessen road wear, while also improving air quality. Granted, on a per cyclist basis it may be difficult to track each of these benefits, but they are not negligible -- cyclists contribute and enhance a healthy community -- they are hardly a financial drain. If you need references, ask Gary Williams.