U of M cops writing $98 tickets for sidewalk bikers

Categories: Bicycle, U of M
uofmbikes560.jpg
Patrick Goossens on Flickr
As the volume of complaints hit record highs this fall, U of M police decided to crack down on annoying sidewalk bikers.

SEE ALSO: The most- and least-bikeable spots in Mpls

Cops are now writing $98 tickets for that infraction. University Police Chief Greg Hestness told the Minnesota Daily that while he'd rather not dole out fines, "Compliance this year has been completely absent... we need people to follow the rules."

The Daily reports that the number of cyclists on campus rose by 13 percent this year, to about 1,000. And not only are more students biking, they have no choice but to head through campus since Washington Avenue is closed to bikers thanks to Green Line LRT construction.

As you'd imagine, some Gophers think $98 is a steep price to pay for broke college students.

Asked about the fines, journalism sophomore Cindy Love told the daily, "It's ridiculous." Spoken like a true broke journo!

The Daily also notes that U of M cops are considering a policy where bikes left for more than a week on public racks would be confiscated. The problem is that some students are having a hard time finding rack space in heavily biked areas. That, in turn, can result in lateness for classes and meetings.

While this year sounds pretty rough for U of M bikers and the authorities charged with safely keeping pedestrian traffic moving through campus, there's reason to believe the situation could improve soon. The Green Line LRT is scheduled to open sometime next June or July, presumably reopening Washington Avenue to bikes and easing some of the on-campus congestion.

-- Follow Aaron Rupar on Twitter at @atrupar. Got a tip? Drop him a line at arupar@citypages.com.



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48 comments
Mary Kellogg
Mary Kellogg

So true, let's work on cutting the cord a bit. I never looked to my parents to pay my way. Times are tough for everyone.

Kevin M Frazier
Kevin M Frazier

they spent all that money for bike lanes use the damm things

Mary Kellogg
Mary Kellogg

I have always suspected more "sting" operations near month end . . . filling the "quota"?? :)

Sam Danger
Sam Danger

I've seen these jokers on campus, they stand on the intersection of the bike/pedestrian hybrid lane and the hardly distinguishable pedestrian only lane, it's a joke and a waste of police time/energy.

Sam Danger
Sam Danger

We should be targeting reckless drivers not reckless cyclists. No one is going to get killed by a cyclist, but a routinely see irresponsible drivers nearly murder cyclists. MPD needs to get it's priorities straight.

Mary Kellogg
Mary Kellogg

I live and bike in uptown. I see more inconsiderate, unaware drivers who nearly kill bikers. And drivers in all kinds of violations (with cell phones in the birka's...just sayin'). So maybe all increase awareness and respect those on he road, bicyclists and drivers...please?

Mary Kellogg
Mary Kellogg

Really?! Come on... Go tackle real crime for cripes sake!

afsmps
afsmps

We need this in Uptown too. Walking is my main form of transportation. I am sick of having to dodge bikers who think that rules are for other people. Bikers are doing to pedestrians the same things that they accuse cars of doing to them.

Jason McCain
Jason McCain

Sometimes you have to get on the sidewalk or risk flattening by a truck in some spots.

Mark Witte
Mark Witte

sidewalks are for pedestrians. Streets are for bicycles. And dont call them bikers.

Alex McLean
Alex McLean

Yay, more bicyclists riding in the middle of the road slowing down traffic!

Erik Seavey
Erik Seavey

Now if they could start stopping at signs and lights, staying in lanes, signaling, etc.

Fluffy Singler
Fluffy Singler

There's a huge problem with them in Uptown too. They ride their bikes obliviously right over the "NO BICYCLES ON THE SIDEWALK" signs.

Kent Erickson
Kent Erickson

Please implement DT as well. If you are too uncomfortable riding in the street then you shouldn't be riding downtown.

rwinsp
rwinsp

Get off the sidewalk bicyclists. You want to share the road with drivers? Stop at stop signs and signal turns. You want to share the sidewalk? Then get off and walk your bike.

Gina Caprella
Gina Caprella

They sent an email. I walk on campus at least 2x a day 5 days a week. I get pegged by a bike at least 1 x a week. I have seen NO TICKETS WRITTEN.

Matthew Martin
Matthew Martin

I may not always stop at a stop sign while on my bike... but no one should be riding on those sidewalks. That's common sense.

Annette Price
Annette Price

What makes you think students’ parents will pay for it? I went to the U and my mom would have laughed at me if I asked her to pay a ticket like this.

Chris Welton
Chris Welton

Two things: Good needs to happen, why are the students whining, it's not like their parents won't pay for it. Can this be implemented dt as well?

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

Runners should not be on the street (where sidewalks exist) and bikes should not be on the sidewalks.  Sick and tired of both.

I agree that bicyclists who run stop signs and lights should be ticketed.

Matthew Sheldon
Matthew Sheldon

Finally! I am a bicyclist and get very annoyed when bicyclists don't obey the laws on and off the street.

trahshechique
trahshechique

As a biker, I do not feel safe on the driving roads with cars. The bike lanes are torn up, often unmarked and cars do not watch for us when the lanes are not visible. I will continue to ride on sidewalks as long as the roads are not safe. I don't feel like getting killed because Minneapolis doesn't have safe bike lanes.

I will ride on the bike lanes if they are safe. And I will always slow way way down on sidewalks to watch for walkers. But you walkers need to know, the roads are NOT BIKE SAFE!

Tickets will be risked.

Cristina Peterson
Cristina Peterson

I'm sick of walking around campus and almost getting hit by bikers on the sidewalk.

_Joe_
_Joe_

Can we start doing this for bicyclists that blow through stop signs on the greenway too?

Honestly, who the fuck do you think those signs are there for?

shleske
shleske

as a student on campus, i can say that this is the best thing to happen. bikers have only gotten worse in the last year, and i can't tell you how many times i've been clipped (ON THE SIDEWALK) by a biker who is supposed to be on the road. obey the laws or get off the bike.

Ski U Mah Gopher
Ski U Mah Gopher

There has to be a temporary solution until the LRT is complete and the Washington Ave Mall is opened in June.

jadoescher
jadoescher

This is good, more people will ride on the street which will increase visibility to drivers and therefore increase safety. And drivers can no longer say "hey asshole, ride on the sidewalk!"

Jeremy Martin
Jeremy Martin

Wow, I thought Bicyclists only had to pretend they follow the traffic laws. Way overdue. Now let's get them downtown too.

digitalprotocol
digitalprotocol topcommenter

i bike on sidewalks so that i dont get hit by cars 

cvmpls
cvmpls

Do this in downtown too please!

tayl0977
tayl0977

Thank god, sidewalk bikers are the worst.

_Joe_
_Joe_

@Mary Kellogg 

Oh I get it.  You still believe that myth.

MNjoe
MNjoe topcommenter

@Erik Seavey Yeah - and if only drivers would put their cellphones away, it'd be a perfect world.

MNjoe
MNjoe topcommenter

@Fluffy Singler And I see asshole drivers like you with one eye on the road and one on their phones all the time.

MNjoe
MNjoe topcommenter

@rwinsp Put your fucking phone away when you're driving too.

_Joe_
_Joe_

@Gina Caprella Start walking with a cane.


You know what to do.

_Joe_
_Joe_

@trahshechique Then don't ride a bike.

Should I get to ride my motorcycle on the sidewalk every time I don't feel safe in traffic?

Stop being a pussy and either accept that you are partaking in a risky activity, or stop doing it.

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

@MNjoe Saw a biker texting while riding Theo Wirth the other day. That rule is valid, but ignored by most. 

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

@MNjoe You know this person? 

trahshechique
trahshechique

@_Joe_ You're comparing a motorcycle to a bicycle? That isn't a rational comparison. I have a cruiser bike and if the lanes aren't safe, I will not ride on the streets. I'll always slow down and move for pedestrians, but I'll never stop doing it. Have you seen Hennepin avenue? Do you text and drive? Sorry, not worth it if the sidewalks are clear.  

k2yeb
k2yeb topcommenter

@MNjoe I guess to each their own. I guess I wouldn't complain about others making blanket statements while making blanket statements of my own. 

MNjoe
MNjoe topcommenter

@k2yeb @MNjoe No. Does she know me? No. I ride a bike thru Uptown all the time and don't bike on sidewalks or run lights - I also try not to make blanket statements about asshole drivers texting when actually only about 80% of them are doing it.  But in this case I'll make an exception.

_Joe_
_Joe_

@trahshechique  

 You give fuck all about everyone else as long as you got yours.  Big surprise you're GOP.

_Joe_
_Joe_

@trahshechique Damn right I am.

You assert that the laws don't apply to you because you don't feel safe.  By extension, I am free to do the same.  For that matter, I drive a small import that is frequently overlooked by fellow motorists.  Maybe I should start driving that on the sidewalk too.

Oh wait...  the world does not revolve around me.  And the laws that are in place are for everyone's safety.  Not just mine.

The point is, you have options other than breaking the law.  You could walk, or take public transit.  You could drive a car.  You could select routes that only take you on roads you feel safe on.  I do that all the time on my motorcycle.  There are roads in this city I will never ride on.

Or you can just be a dick and put your own needs first.  While you're at it, go register with the GOP.

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