A crucial thing for bicyclists to understand is that with the radical independence and freedom bicycling CAN supply, bicyclists need to look after each other's needs carefully, and treat each other and their foibles gently and firmly. One of the smartest things bicyclists can do is to carry with them at all times a fluorescent tape supply so that gross bicycle hazards can be flagged by bicyclists encountering them at the time they are noticed and/or there is a near accident or injury. It is so much more satisfying/EFFECTIVE to just stick some high visibility night reflective hazard tape on existing physical hazards, than it is to try reporting to officials and hoping someday, somehow, to stem the blood being spilled by bicyclists because some planner forgot there is such a thing as bicycles. The KARMA around doing this is so much better, simpler and faster than the tedious and unproductive procedures involved in hazard reporting. My Karma as a safe bicyclist amazes even me; my luck comes back to me when I proactively help flag public bike hazards, "ON THE SPOT" so to speak, and I will be celebrating 60 years of urban bicycling without a serious injury accident, this summer. It's important to understand that often local governments' pro-bicycling programs often prove to be cosmetic in nature. When a city has a bicycle coordinator that this is not to be confused with a city having a bicycle advocate. It's important to understand that when a citizen reports gross hazards to a city, the net result years later will not necessarily be ANY improvement or redress, just possibly little more than excuses as to how expenditures on paving, cement, and indoor car parking garage schemes, along with personal injury lawsuits, have nearly bankrupted a city, so bike hazards remain to injure cyclist after cyclist. It's a good idea for injured cyclists to coalesce on the web so that a group of cyclists pooling funds can hire pricey attorneys who are needed to successfully sue a local city into not only SAYING it cares about encouraging bicyclists, but actually ACTS like it cares and understands HOW to encourage bicyclists. That includes prompt redress of hazards as well as prompt reform of bicycles-as-criminal city codes that are selectively enforced against bicyclists. Maybe a Cadillac-owning city police chief decided years ago that bicyclists are a nuisance to be abated instead of a vital transportation mode to be encouraged. It could well be that the loftier the rhetoric about encouraging bicycling, the harsher the crackdown in any given city against the basic things bicyclists need such as: Bike lanes on COMMERCIAL CORRIDORS, where the bike shops are located. SECURE INDOOR PUBLIC PARKING FOR BICYCLES, especially in towns wealthy enough to arrange for secure indoor public parking for CARS. Absurd and obscenely expensive and hazardous car parking garages, also known as burial methods for cars in earthquake country, is TAKEN FOR GRANTED AS AN ENTITLEMENT FOR CAR OWNERS. But quake-safe light and small-footprint indoor parking for bicycles is UNHEARD OF AND UN-LOBBIED FOR AS AN ENCOURAGEMENT TO BICYCLES, at least in the U.S.; see
Incidentally, in this biker's opinion, a definition of "encouraging bicycling" does not include expending funds in that category for signs prohibiting all bicycling at all times with three figure fines, although that is the way it seems to work in good 'ol Berkeley, California.