The Zaragoza city authorities have announced their intention to press ahead with the plan to expand the city cycle lane network in thecost-effective teeth of fierce opposition from cycling groups. The stated objective is to have 52 kilometres of shared lanes opened in the coming months.
This new expansion has been met with dismay by cycling groups who consider them unsafe. They are multi-use with cars, scooters and personal mobility vehicles limited to 30 kmph. City authorities have countered the criticism by arguing that these calm traffic lanes make bicycle and scooter circulation safer. The measure is considered cost effective as it merely involves painting the markings on existing roads and does not incur the cost of the construction of specific, segregated cycle paths.
These new calm traffic lanes have so far been painted on twenty streets city wide: Avenida de la Almozara, Pablo Gargallo, Puerta Sancho, Avenida de La Jota, Pascuala Perié, Felisa Galé, Avenida de Cataluña, Adolfo Aznar, Pablo Neruda, Salvador Allende, Camino Puente Virrey, Pilón road, Caspe Commitment, Doctor Iranzo, Rodrigo Rebolledo, Santa Isabel Avenue, Cesáreo Alierta, Alonso V and Asalto.
It will come as no surprise that this measure seems to have angered cyclists and motorists equally. The common complaint that cycle lane measures have reduced circulation for motor vehicles has been applied to this latest measure too. Creating shared lanes rather than building segregated cycle paths is widely considered a recipe for disaster