Bicycle ordinance fails in Irondale - ABC 33/40 - Birmingham News, Weather, Sports

Bicycle ordinance fails in Irondale

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It was a packed house in Irondale Tuesday night as the city council voted on banning bicycles on a portion of one city road.

The motion failed tonight 3 to 2. The ordinance would have prohibited people riding bikes on a three-quarter-mile stretch of Grants Mill Road. Before the vote came down, attorneys for cyclists called the provision unlawful and a violation of state constitution.

Cyclists packed the Irondale City Council meeting fighting for their right to be on the road.

"We want to see all of our roads kept safe an open for cyclists."

"Should we ban all cyclists from the intersection where I got hit, I only had a helmet to protect me in an intersection where I had the green light."

Even an injured cyclist spoke out against the proposed ordinance to ban cyclists on a 3 quarter mile section of Grants Mill Road between Karl Daly Road and Grantswood Road. They asked for speed limit changes and new share the road signs to improve safety for everyone.

Cyclist, Pete Foret, says "Motorists are not respecting cyclists and that's what needs to change. We need to find common ground where we both can interact on the same road."

Council Member Terry Bearden says he proposed the ordinance after another car swerved around a cyclist and almost hit him head on. "It is a narrow road. There are ditches on both sides of the road and it's dangerous for both a bicycle and cars coming around the curves."

Bearden says he only wants to protect people.. but despite his concern the ordinance failed 3 to 2.

Stan Palla with the Alabama Bicycle Coalition says "Now the real commitment is to work with Irondale to make sure we're doing what we need to do and we're going to have to come up with alternatives to make Mr. Bearden feel better."

And Bearden says he'll work with them. "If the bicyclists want to meet with me, I'd be glad to do that if they have an alternative to do to this road to make it safer."

Had this ordinance passed, violators would have received a 50-dollar fine. Councilman Bearden says the city has applied for a grant to have the road widened.

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