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Keep bicycles off Chicago’s busiest streets

A bicycle rider on Halsted at Madison Street. A construction site on the left has crowded out a lane of Halsted to make way for a temporary pedestrian walkway. | Rahul Parikh/Sun-Times

As long as the mayor continues to put bike lanes on very busy streets, cyclists will continue to get injured in accidents with cars (“When a bike rider is killed on Halsted Street” — Sunday).

My wife and I have used the bike lane on Roosevelt Road between Canal and State. Who at City Hall thought it was a good idea to sandwich a bike lane between three lanes of traffic? It’s downright dangerous.

We live in a city with hundreds of miles of safe side streets that are very close to the busier main streets. How about putting bike lanes on those quiet streets and getting the bikes off the main streets?

It’s insane to keep putting bike lanes on our busiest streets and then act surprised when another cyclist gets killed like Mrs. Angela Park. Wake up, Mr. Mayor.

Mike Kirchberg, Little Italy

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Too many careless bicycle riders

Let me humbly suggest that too little attention is paid to the negligent manner in which bike riders operate their vehicles.

Just yesterday, I moved my vehicle into the right-hand turn lane at an intersection on the North Side. There is a bike lane clearly delineated on the street I was traveling. It ended short of the intersection, as delineated by a broken white line. I activated my signal, observed a bike rider two car lengths behind me and moved into the turn lane. As I slowed to make the turn, the bike rider shot past me on the right side of my car, causing me to brake suddenly. Fortunately, no collision occurred.

This is a scenario that I have often seen repeated as I walk about my Near North neighborhood. I challenge everyone to take the time to observe how often bike riders disregard traffic control devices, dart in front of moving traffic without signaling, fail to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks or ride in areas reserved for pedestrian traffic.

As bike riding becomes more prevalent, bike riders share in the responsibility to make our roads safe for vehicular and pedestrian traffic.

Patrick E. McGann, Gold Coast

To sell papers, make a splash

I much appreciated Georgie Anne Geyer’s>defense of the media in Sunday’s Sun-Times. Typically for her, it was a clear and concise statement of that defense.

I was surprised to see her close the column urging people to “start reading, and paying for and appreciating, real news as reported by newspapers — or just lean back and be had.”

This sounded too much as if the market ought to wise up and do the right thing before it’s too late. It’s like General Motors telling car buyers to wake up and smell the coffee and buy their cars.

Newspapers can do nothing about trends that treat them harshly or competition like cable news. All they can do is come up with a product that sells.

Jim Bowman, Andersonville