In response to claims by motorists, cyclists, and electric scooterists that they alone have the right to use the streets, VDL officials have unveiled an easy solution: new 3-in-1 lanes.
“Car drivers believe they own the roads, cyclists believe they do, and electric scooterists – well, actually they haven’t got a clue about anything and think they can ride wherever they want,” said Gabriel Closter, who heads the city’s Office of Creative Solutions. “Everyone is frustrated, and everyone is confused. Who actually has the right to the road? Our new answer: everyone does.”
Teams of civil engineers had spent months trying to find a way to make more traversable space, Closter says. Their ideas included constructing a network of futuristic overhead bike paths, adding new car lanes, and building special tunnels far below the surface for electric scooters because their riders pose a risk to society and should be kept far away from others.
“Then Luca, one of my assistants, was like, why do we need all these separate paths anyway?” Closter said. “Don’t people know how to share?”
Because the plan requires no construction, it will be easy to implement, calling for nothing more than a few thousand liters of paint.
“Each existing car lane will now have a bicycle lane in the middle, and each of those bicycle lanes will contain an electric scooter lane,” Closter said. “Very simple, but we’ll still need to have some kind of massive public-awareness campaign for the electric scooter people to teach them about staying between the lines.”
The plan has sparked other ideas for how to make better use of public thoroughfares.
“We’re already thinking about putting a pedestrian lane inside the scooter lane, and then putting a wheelchair lane inside the pedestrian lane,” Closter said. “I truly believe 5-in-1 lanes are the future.”
A version of this was originally published by RTL Today on October 7, 2021