New bike lane project in Boulder sparks discussion

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BOULDER, Colo. -- It’s been a couple weeks since Boulder reduced vehicle traffic to one lane each way on a stretch of Folsom St. between Canyon Blvd and Valmont Rd, and residents have mixed feelings about the changes.

“I like how it turned out,” said Boulder resident Kosta Tovstiadi. “I think it works for both bikers and cars.”

“I know it’s a safety thing for the cyclists, but it’s just causing backups on the traffic,” said another Boulder resident Sheryl Joel.

City council approved the project on Folsom Street at a public hearing in June.

“When I went to college, I would ride this road a ton and it was nice to have a bike lane but it’s even nicer to have a separate bike lane,” Brian Mazanti said.

Two other locations, on Iris Ave. and 63rd St., were also approved at the June hearing.

“Boulder takes a long time to get through anyway because there is lots of traffic, and this just kind of put us over the top a little bit,” Joel said.

So city council has put those plans on hold, after a lot of negative feedback from the community.

“I think that’s a good idea,” Joel said. “I know what roads they were planning on doing, so if they go there I’ll just avoid them.”
But some residents enjoy the changes, for more than just bigger bike lanes.

“It’s great we’ve lived here for about two years and we’ve already noticed that Folsom is a lot quieter,” Esta Tovstiadi said. “People are going the speed limit in their cars and I’ve seen not only a lot more cyclists but a bigger diversity.”

“It’s about a city that’s made for driving and a city that’s more on a human scale where you can walk, where you can drive, where you can bike, where you can transit and make a choice,” Kosta added.

City council and a transportation board will further asses the Folsom project throughout the month of August, and are planning to hold a public hearing sometime in September.

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