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Electric cargo delivery bikes could be coming to a bike lane near you

Electrical cargo supply bikes may very well be coming to a motorbike lane close to you – Streetsblog Chicago

Yesterday Chicago Metropolis Council’s Pedestrian & Site visitors Security Committee unanimously handed a proposal to permit low-speed electrical cargo supply bikes to function within the metropolis’s bike lanes. The total Council is predicted to approve the measure subsequent Wednesday.

Beneath the proposal firms like DHL, UPS, and FedEx can be allowed to ship packages by way of electric-assist cargo bikes utilizing bike lanes. Firms can be prohibited from working and parking the bikes on sidewalks. The cargo bikes would even be banned from utilizing town’s on-street bike corrals and would as a substitute have to make use of a chosen vehicular parking spot. Firms utilizing cargo supply bikes might want to apply for a license from the Division of Enterprise Affairs and Client Safety, and the cargo supply cyclists would want to get a motorbike messenger allow. Basic violations might lead to fines starting from $100 to $500, whereas those that function a cargo bicycle with no license may very well be fined at the very least $100 and not more than $1,000.

Based on a report by WTTW’s Heather Cherone, Chicago Division of Transportation assistant commissioner Sean Wiedel mentioned he hopes this system will result in fewer supply vehicles downtown, the place truckers incessantly block intersections and bike lanes, and the autos emit air pollution.

Whereas the brand new program focuses on the Central Enterprise District, it might even be nice to see supply cargo bikes used to cut back congestion, air pollution, and severe crashes within the neighborhoods. Time will inform if we’ll see extra electrical cargo bikes in Hyde Park, Lakeview, or Belmont-Cragin, however it might definitely be an enchancment over giant, gas-guzzling supply autos. I’ve come throughout my justifiable share of Amazon vans parked on neighborhood streets in such a manner that put the protection of individuals on foot or on bikes in danger. These conditions, in my view, level to a necessity for designated loading zones on residential streets, given the ever-present nature of on-line package deal deliveries.

DHL field supervisor Jose Polanco (left) and Streetsblog New York editor Gersh Kuntzman demo cargo bikes. Photo: NYC DOTDHL subject supervisor Jose Polanco (left) and Streetsblog New York editor Gersh Kuntzman demo cargo bikes. Picture: NYC DOT

Aldermen Daniel La Spata (1st) and Maria Hadden (forty ninth) voiced issues in regards to the width of the cargo bicycles (bikes as much as 4ft huge can be allowed) and whether or not or not they might crowd out different cyclists within the bike lanes. I share these issues. If such issues materialize, I might hope this may lead town to significantly think about rising the width of our bike lanes. Even when we hadn’t give the inexperienced mild to package deal supply by way of cargo bike, our bike lanes ought to be expanded to permit for protected and cozy side-by-side biking.

All in all, permitting company supply firms to ship by bike is a step in the fitting route for right-sizing the autos on our streets for the duties at hand. Maybe these firms will be a part of sustainable transportation advocates in assist of extra protected bike lanes all through town.