… and then there are bike maps. By now, you’ve probably already looked at the maps of the City’s forthcoming Bicycle Plan. You’ve probably been following the good work over at Streetsblog (start here and here) and have taken the time to read the comments more fully than I. Maybe you’ve read BikinginLA‘s thoughtful and measured critique. I’m hoping to be able to add one more small voice into the mix, but for the moment, I wanted to point out what maps there are.
My friend Jordan gave another go at building an online map for cyclists (cleverly named the Los Angeles Cycling Map). I encourage you to take a look and give him feedback. I think he’d probably agree that the routes are a bit sketchy at the moment, but one of the things that recommends his effort is his attempt to integrate Twitter into the mix in order to provide some more real-time data about street conditions. I like that.
Also, if you haven’t seen it via LAist or Streetsblog, there’s another bike map being developed that maps out potential cycling trouble spots. It’s called Bikewise, and as Sarah Goodyear suggests in her intro, it’s only going to be as good as the people using it.
I still have a couple of the early maps that I put together, but I haven’t returned to the project in some time. If you’re curious, you can find the original piece I put together here. Some while back, Ubrayj added a thoughtful comment: “Clearly, most cyclists know where they are going – what is lacking is consideration for cyclists in the way the roadway is designed. I don’t want to take away from your idea and effort. I feel that mapping urban bike routes is one part of a broader push to endorse cycling, but that it will not, in and of itself, lead to more cyclists using the roads.”
He has a point (and he also has a map!) – all the maps in the world won’t do much if we don’t see a larger institutional commitment to considering the place of cyclists in the original design of roadways. All the same, it’s encouraging to see the newest efforts to map biking in the city – a note of optimism amid the din.