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A Hillcrest business owner is rallying opposition to a bike plan that will increase cycling networks in seven communities because he says the effort will eliminate too many parking spots.
Chris Shaw, owner of Urban Mo’s, Gossip Grill and Hillcrest Brewing Company, met with about 25 other business owners and managers Thursday, along with representatives from SANDAG, who are spearheading the project.
The meeting was scheduled after Shaw, in an open letter, denounced the project’s preliminary plans to remove 91 parking spots on westbound lanes on the proposed University Avenue bike corridor.
“This would be a huge price for the businesses to pay,” Shaw said.
Shaw’s opposition points to one of the most common complaints about expanding bike infrastructure: concerns about the impact on automobile parking availability. This objection hadn’t been seriously raised in this plan yet. At a meeting earlier this month, business owners along the proposed bike corridor indicated pedestrian and bicycle traffic would be more valuable than parking spots. The bike proposal is a 12-mile route running along three corridors that will connect Uptown to Old Town, Mission Valley, Downtown, North Park and Balboa Park.
In the next couple of months, SANDAG will determine the overall effects on parking in this area by speaking with residents and local businesses.