New Bicycle "Only" Lanes in Taipei

I grabbed this shot of a mail truck blocking the new cycle lane on Dunhua my cell phone

The Taipei government has recently had bike lanes put in along some of the busier streets in the city, like this one running along Dunhua (敦化) Road. Sometimes they're painted red and sometimes they're in green. I've noticed a pattern: The red ones are usually barricaded off from encroaching cars and scooters by a little rubber rail. A motorcyclist trying to get over the bump to ride in the bicycle "only" lane would probably end up on his or her butt, while a car could get caught straddling the bump.

For some reason, the lanes are not completely barricaded off. This morning, I noticed several breaks in the railing, like near bus stops and around Pateh (八德). At these breaks, motorcyclists rode freely in the for bicycles "only" lane. I also saw a mail truck (see above picture) parked in the lane, forcing cyclists back out into the traffic. I counted a dozen violations in less than five minutes.

Can I get a ticket for parking if I'm a mail carrier? Do mail trucks ever get towed in Taipei?


Anonymous said...

He has his blinkers on. That will give him a pass for illegal parking.

Anonymous said...

I think everyone should abide by the law, including traffic regulations. We are no exception, but some are not. In the case you described on blog, I know ambulance and fire engine are allowed to drive on when they are in emergence. Especially, some official cars like post office have the same privilege. You've lived here for a long time, even become a half blood of Taiwanese, what I said above wouldn't give you a big surprise, would it?

Patrick Cowsill said...

I don't know how the mail truck is an emergency. The whole point of a bike lane is get the bikes out of the traffic and to encourage people to cycle (which is better for the air, for our health and thus the city when you think about medical costs).

Yesterday, I walked on the other side of the road, from Pateh to Nanking, along Dunhua. They haven't put up rubber barricades. So now taxis are using it to park and rest. The taxi drivers were out on the sidewalk, under the big trees, chatting.

"You've lived here for a long time, even become a half blood of Taiwanese, what I said above wouldn't give you a big surprise, would it?" No, there are some that feel they should have certain privileges (see the guy that lost the 2004 presidential election).

Matt D said...

They are struggling with the exact same issues related to Bicycles and Bicycle Paths in Boise Idaho as we speak! Hey, maybe Taipei is really the alternate-plane reflection of Boise Idaho from a quantum physics standpoint? You guys in Taipei wouldn't happen to be dealing with a mortgage crisis and an economic meltdown too... would you?