Tag Archives: Washington Street

Driver tries to run Washington Street bicyclist off the road

Type and location

Harassing driver
200 W Washington Street, Chicago, IL

What happened

Your story: This enraged driver tried to run into me.

The pattern that has become more apparent to me now is, even on a triple wide street like Washington, drivers that buzz by in order to pass me up to get to the red light in front of me become more enraged as I pass them up again at the red when I take the lane once more.

As I passed he yelled “oh yeah! your’e on your bike”. When the light turned green he revved up and aimed his car towards my direction. I managed to veer off to the side. Mad that he was not able to get close enough to me, he yelled “pussy!” and sped off to the next red light.

It’s kind of flattering being called pussy. Those things can take a good beating and they come back for more.

Suggested improvements for this location: Actually extending the Washington bike lane into downtown might make it a little less of a harrowing ride. Putting in a protected lane would be tops.

Ed. note: The Chicago Department of Transportation will begin construction in Spring 2014 on the Central Loop BRT which will add a protected bike lane on Washington Street from Clinton (maybe Canal) to Michigan Avenue. This makes a gap of two or three blocks from where the bike lane ends at Desplaines now to Canal or Clinton, respectively. 

Driver tells bicyclists to “get off the road” on Washington Street

Type

1. Passed really closely
2. Swerved into your path and then out of your path
Injury: No

What happened

Roadway description: No bicycle markings

Your story: Another cyclist and I were riding eastbound on Washington Street. As we passed across Dearborn Street, a motorist in a red SUV behind us squealed his tires as he sped up. He then swerved into the center lane when he was within a car-length of us. He did the same thing at the next two lights – buzzing cyclists as he yells “Get off the road!”.

Suggested improvements: Educate motorists and enforce traffic laws.