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Shanghai says it won't let bike lanes disappear

By Yang Jian  (Shanghai Daily)

09:22, June 24, 2013

Shanghai officials plan to build more bicycle lanes to Metro stations, traffic hubs and scenic spots, as well as expand the bicycle rental service tested at Metro stations, traffic authorities said yesterday.

The pledge was made in response to the concerns of local legislators about the loss of bicycle lanes.

Traffic officials affirmed that the city will encourage more use of bicycles to help share the traffic burden and make it more feasible to safely ride bicycles for leisure, the Shanghai Construction and Transport Commission said.

"Some leisure bicycle lanes and pedestrian ways will be built at local parks, green areas as well as scenic zones along the Huangpu River," the commission's said in a reply to legislators.

Zhu Ru'an, a local legislator, said that the number of motor vehicle lanes "has been increasing dramatically while many lanes for bicycles have been sacrificed to meet the demand, giving ways to the vehicle lanes to meet the surging demands.

In Lujiazui in the Pudong New Area, for instance, there are no lanes for bicycles. A bicycle lane on the Gubei Road in Changning District, meanwhile, has been transformed into a motor vehicle lane, according to Zhu.

The commission promised in its reply that it would allow the absence of bicycle lanes on fewer than 5 percent of local roads.

Also, the bicycle rental service piloted at suburban Metro stations will be expanded.

The government will focus on solving the problem of "the last 1 kilometer," long a source of complaints by residents who say they have trouble completing their commute, officials said.

The bikes are now available in some districts such as Minhang and Pudong.

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