The City of Chattanooga announced that it was going to convert the protected bike lanes on Broad Street to “Berke lanes” to be used by Mayor Andy Berke, his family and members of his staff, using any mode of transportation of their choosing.
In a written announcement, it was explained that it was calculated that by making this change, usage of the protected lanes would actually increase.
The protected bike lanes on Broad Street have been controversial, with some arguing that they are not used enough by bicyclists to justify their existence.
Several business owners on Broad Street have complained that the lanes have affected their business, and the lanes have also been a source of confusion for some car drivers, some of whom have parked erroneously in the bike lanes.
Others have praised the protected bike lanes, citing the increased safety that they provide and heralding them as a symbol of progress for the city by encouraging bicycle usage for a healthy, green and frugal lifestyle.
The protected Berke lanes on Broad Street will be marked with paint using stencils that bear the likeness of Mayor Berke’s face.
The City Council made the decision after reviewing various options for the bike lanes, including the rejected option of converting them to “bork lanes” to be used only by Swedish chefs.