Hundreds of bicyclists take first ride as cycle track opens on King Street

Hundreds of bicyclists take first ride as cycle track opens on King Street
Published: Dec. 6, 2014 at 9:21 PM HST|Updated: Dec. 6, 2014 at 10:37 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Hundreds of bicyclists hit South King Street as the city officially opened its first Cycle Track.

Some of Honolulu's youngest bikers from the Kalihi Valley Instructional Bike Exchange got the honor of untying the maile lei to open the first such protected bike lane on Oahu.

Led by Mayor Kirk Caldwell, some 300 cyclists took an inaugural ride down the two-mile track. And they couldn't be happier.

"You may recall back in 2006 when the voters passed Charter Amendment 8, making it a priority to make Honolulu bicycle and pedestrian friendly. so this is a really huge start toward that," said Natalie Iwasa of Cycle On Hawaii.

There are currently 46 miles of bike paths, 54 miles of bike lanes and 40 miles of bike routes on Oahu. The new protected track may be more bike-friendly, but there is still a learning curve.

For example, parts of the lane painted green, such is near driveways and intersections, are areas where motorists and bicyclists should proceed with caution.

"Bicyclists need to be aware when they go through an intersection, they may have to pay attention a little bit more than they might have otherwise, so education is a key thing with respect to this cycle track," said Iwasa.

Some of the neighborhood along the track are wondering pedestrians will fit into the new scheme of things.

"They're gonna be walking right past the biker's lane, and if there's a bike in their lane, you know, they're going fast and who's gonna get hit? The pedestrian or what?" asked Kimi Torres.

"We want to get it right, and if there's things we have to adjust, we will, because we want to make it good everyone, those who ride, those who walk, and those who are in cars," said Caldwell.

The cycle track is a pilot project, but the city is already planning for new cycle tracks to connect to it.

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