Part of Hawthorne Avenue will return to four lanes and Cedar Shoals drive will switch to three lanes, while most of North Avenue will remain five lanes if the Athens-Clarke Commission follows the advice of the county Transportation and Public Works Department.
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Certainly, the current bicycle lanes on Hawthorne are not an ideal width and are poorly maintained, but their presence creates a valuable safety buffer, both for cyclists and for pedestrians. Hawthorne also serves as a valuable connector for the Oglethorpe and Alps Rd bicycle lanes. Removing them is moving us away from an interconnected network of bicycle lanes.
While the frustration with congestion is understandable, congestion is a result of excessive car dependency. By going backwards in our transportation planning- doing all we can to accommodate the rapid flow of automobiles and eliminating transportation choices- we are guaranteeing further congestion.