Recently (as in the last 5 years) many of the cities and counties I drive through on my commute have invested a significant sum to install some really nice asphalt bike paths along streets that have no shoulder and/or have a high volume of fast moving traffic, in some instances particularly large truck traffic. The commuter & recreational biker community fought hard to get these paths installed for their safety and yet EVERY morning for the last 2 weeks (probably longer but that is only how long I've been keeping track) I have encountered at least 2 (usually more) bikers in their speed suits biking with traffic on a road with no shoulder and an empty bike path just 3 feet away.
Is there something I'm not understanding? Are bike paths no longer acceptable? Is there some kind of bike versus car movement? And, if the paths aren't going to be used why did we spend so much to install them and continue to spend to maintain them?
This morning was particularly bad. I encounter this same biker every morning, wearing the same bike racing outfit, with review mirrors on his helmet, and what I assume is his work clothes strapped to the back of his bike. Just a few feet away from an empty, paved, completely redone less than a year ago bike path. As each car, truck, and suv, passed the biker he swerved ever so slightly into us. When traffic was stopped at the stoplights, he zoomed past all of us on the shoulder and blew the light.
Angry he can't go as fast as the rest of us? Trying to punish us gas guzzlers for our carbon footprint? Death wish?
I just don't understand.