COLUMN: Eastern’s campus needs bike lanes

Ellen+Dooley

Ellen Dooley

Ellen Dooley, Columnist

Have you ever been walking down the sidewalks of Eastern? That is everyone, right? While walking, you will notice that some of the students here ride a bike, skateboard or electric scooter to class. Sometimes, it seems like some of these students zoom past you blindly and give you a thirty-second heart attack. So how should we avoid these accidents? I think there should be certain sidewalks or an additional sidewalk for bikers, skaters, etc.  

The best option would be a bike lane. While there are some existing bike lanes on campus, they are mostly on the roads where motorists are driving. The main issue is that a bike lane system may have a big price tag. Then that asks the question, which is more important? Walkers’ safety and bikers’ convenience or sending money. This problem is not sticking out like a sore thumb, but it would add some appeal to campus. Students may be more interested in Eastern if they knew they had a bike path. They can tour around campus with ease and get in their daily move goal. Maybe a prospective student who is an avid biker or skater sees this organized path for them will choose Eastern. It also adds a potential RSO! Plus, it adds appeal to those who wish to exercise by bike and in general. New infrastructure always catches people’s eye.  

This isn’t a problem that can be solved overnight. It takes time to expand sidewalks or create new ones. Not to mention all the plans that would have to be designed. Maybe we could put engineering majors to use! To me, that sounds like a good internship opportunity. It would put the skills they are learning into action. Plus, it would give students some experience before they even graduate. Maybe this program can lead to other small campus improvements.  

There are some other options rather than creating a whole new bike lane system or internship program though. Bells on bikes alert people you are behind them. Or simply saying “on your right” or “on your left” also helps. The notorious headphones also add a problem. I know my AirPods are in when I walk to my classes. If walkers seem like they are daydreaming, it’s simple, just slow down. A lot of problems and congestion can be solved if those on wheels just slow down. Honestly, I have to give credit to those who ride all across campus. With my luck, my longboard would hit a rock and I’d be done for. But in all seriousness, do your fellow wheelless students a favor. If they do not seem to notice you, warn them! Otherwise, happy travels!  

Ellen Dooley is a freshman special education major. She can be contacted at 581-2812 or [email protected]