On Thursday night, Austin, Texas, was like a microcosm of modern urban American cycling. Downtown, people gathered at benefit concerts to raise money for the mounting medical bills of a local man struck and critically injured by a drunk driver in October.
Meanwhile, nearly 1,200 cyclists biked to the state capitol in a really, really sad kind of Critical Mass, with one cargo bike toting a large banner that read: “No More Deaths.” The event was sponsored by the group Please Be Kind to Cyclists, which is about as passive as you can get when it comes to life-or-death street safety issues.
Over the last few years, Austin has seen some of the most explosive growth in bike commuting in the country. Hopefully its infrastructure, governance, and vehicle-wielding residents will catch up soon.