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The Colorado Supreme Court Overturns Black Hawk's Ban on Bicycles

Colorado Supreme Court struck down the city of Black Hawk’s controversial bicycle ban within the city’s limits.  The decision was rendered on February 14, 2013. Black Hawk enacted the bike ban ban in 2010 because of a rise in commercial buses and increase in gambling traffic.  Black Haw has a plethora of narrow, roads without shoulders. The ban did not apply to local bicyclists communting for work.

Black Hawk’s bicycle ban had forced cyclists to walk their bikes through the city’s casino-lined streets, and the Supreme Court noted that the ban created a “ripple-effect” by effectively preventing bike access to Central City and discouraging bicyclists from visiting other nearby mountain towns. The Court held that Black Hawk’s bicycle ban violated state law because, unlike other municipalities that ban bikes, such as Denver’s prohibition of bicycles on the 16th Street Mall, Black Hawk did not provide alternative bike routes within 450 feet, as required by state law. Bicycle Colorado Executive Director Dan Grunig praised the Supreme Court’s ruling, “The Supreme Court ruling really affirmed the share-the-road law the state has passed. This may make Colorado’s laws some of the most bicycle friendly in the nation because they have an affirmation from the Supreme Court.”

*information in this blog was published by the Denver Post

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