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Meanwhile, on the Internet
Tribune Reporters
'Meanwhile' is a collaborative blog about all the crazy stuff on the Internet. Here, reporters from various Tribune desks tell you what you (almost) need to know about topics ranging from technology to YouTube sensations. Contributors: Michael McFall, Dave Newlin, Matt Piper, Brennan Smith, Erin Alberty. Edited by Sheena McFarland.

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(Al Hartmann | The Salt Lake Tribune) Bicyclist rides along Salt Lake City's separated bikeway along 300 East and 700 South. It's the first in the state. Mayor Ralph Becker, City Council representatives and Transportation Division officials will unveiled a pilot project providing a new and innovative type of separated bikeway where bicyclists ride next to the curb and are separated from moving traffic by parked cars in addition to the marked buffer. “This project represents the potential future of a family-friendly, separated bikeway network throughout downtown Salt Lake City,” said Mayor Becker. The three-block project is designed to provide a prototype for separated bikeways that could be constructed throughout downtown, making selected use of Salt Lake City’s unique wide streets to create a low-stress, family-friendly bikeway network.
Bike lanes help local businesses, study says

In the course of reporting yesterday’s story on bike accidents I found a report with a surprising finding: dedicated bike lanes actually generate economic growth.

The report — produced for People For Bikes and the Alliance for Biking and Walkingfound that protected bike lanes have an array of positive economic impacts on cities. They include:

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• Fueling booming real estate markets

• Recruiting and retaining skilled workers

• Producing healthier and more productive workers

• Increasing retail revenue in growing urban markets

Among other things, the report notes "that wide streets with fast-moving car traffic tend to depress property values, while buildings on streets with new bicycle facilities and pedestrian improvements have appreciated."

Moreover, case studies cited by the report show properties increasing in value as the get closer and closer to bicycle trails.

The impact on retail revenue is even more interesting. In San Francisco, for example, 66 percent of merchants saw increased sales when the city replaced car lanes with bike lanes. In Portland and several other cities, bicyclists spent less per visit at local business but more over the course of the month because they visited more times.

The entire study is fascinating and includes a number of specific case studies from around the U.S. and else where.

— Jim Dalrymple II

Twitter: @jimmycdii

Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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