First, Denver City Council reduced speed limits on some city streets, ostensibly to protect cyclists from drivers, according to the mayor. Then came the conversion of more city-center vehicle lanes to exclusive bus lanes, creating bottlenecks that may quicken commutes for a select few but will leave drivers even more gridlocked. Finally, as if rush hour along Broadway isn’t constricting and chaotic enough, the city announced that the lane restricting scheme would be extended in length and made permanent. While perhaps well-intentioned, these policies won’t achieve their goal of reducing traffic congestion; in fact, they will worsen it.
Each of these actions seems designed to create, rather than mitigate, additional congestion, presumably on the premise that the only way to get those stubborn car commuters onto bikes, scooters, light rail and buses is to inflict the maximum pain and make our lives as commuters ever more miserable. The reality is that dependable mass transportation is available to only a small fraction of Coloradans.