Bike Friendly City Fail

Bike Friendly City Fail

Last Thursday our area was hit by strong thunderstorms. South of Alexandria, microbursts hit the Belle Haven and Belle View areas of Fairfax County and Dyke Marsh especially hard. The Mount Vernon Trail in this area was closed as was the adjacent George Washington Memorial Parkway. Within a day and a half the trail and the Parkway were cleared of obstructions.

This tree came down across the Mount Vernon Trail in the same storm. Unfortunately, for trail users, this tree fell in Jones Point Park just south of Old Town in the city of Alexandria.

The League of American Bicyclists (of which I am a member) designated Alexandria as a bicycle friendly city at the silver level in 2013. You’d think that getting silver level status would mean that the city regards the users of the Mount Vernon Trail with respect. Not so much,

The failure to remove this downed tree is testimony to what’s wrong with the awards. Alexandria tolerates cyclists. I have to wonder whether Alexandria would even merit bronze status without the Mount Vernon Trail, a federal government trail.

If the city thinks I’m being harsh, prove me wrong. Remove the tree. And the next time this happens don’t wait days and days until trail users call you out on your inaction.