Colorado, famous as a centre for cycle sport in the USA, is now also famous for having one of its towns make cycling illegal –  to “promote safety”.

This is, Black Hawk, population 100, founded in the 1850s Gold Rush is one of several towns in Gregories Gulch.

The  bizarre law applies to the old part of the town, not the residential streets. It is considered to be the first such law in the US and it has outraged the cycling community.  

Anyone caught cycling faces a fine of $68. Since the ban came into effect on June 5 eight people had been fined.

The restricted area is the old quarter of 19th century streets deemed too narrow to accommodate both motor vehicles and cycles. So the bikes have had to go.

Although there are no records of fatalities or bike/motor vehicle collisions,  health and safety reasons were cited as a reason for the ban. That and the Board of Aldermen’s  perception that visitors heading for the town’s many casinos will be more at risk from cyclists than cars allowed access to  this area.

Cyclists’ lobbies are gearing up to challenge the law, which they say is illegal.

“The danger here is the precedent,” Dan Grunig of Bicycle Colorado, an advocacy group, in Guardian Online. “We don’t believe it’s right or legal and we want to make sure it’s addressed before it’s spread any further.”

An outright ban on being able to ride a bicycle through a community is unheard of, according to Charlie Zeeger, director of the Pedestrian and Bicycling Information Centre at the University of North Carolina.

  • stu pidyanks

    if they made there cars a bit smaller it would help….. Bet theres enough room for their mac d’s drive through in it!

    Lazy burger eating inbreads

  • Rob Turnbull

    Re the bike ban in Colorado.

    This sets a dangerous precedent. Agree with the last post, I wonder what they have been smoking? On a serious point though, I hope this is consigned to the dustbin of history where it belongs.



  • Simon Willson

    Only in America!!!!!!

  • Kirstin

    It seems no one knows how to treat a bike…

    the main argument I see is that it is much quieter, so maybe pedestrians wouldn’t hear it coming… but with hybrids/electric vehicles, this isn’t true anymore. And being hit by a bike is much less dangerous than a car…

    I agree to a minimum speed limit law that effectively bans bikes, but this small area seems like a perfect example of bikes and pedestrians only. Put up some bollards and make it a cute old downtown…

  • Tom Knox

    I will be up in Blackhawk tomorrow taking photos, I will send some to CW if you like. email me.

  • Ken Evans

    “…..streets deemed too narrow to accommodate both motor vehicles and cycles.
    So the bikes have had to go.”

    Because everybody knows that a bike is much wider than a car !

    What did they smoke for breakfast ?