The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, October 26, 2001


Heard around town:
"Who owns the road: motorists or cyclists?"

Carlisle Mosquito reporter Anne Marie Brako asked motorists and cyclists about road ownership. On October 20 she stopped riders randomly at the Acton and West Street intersection, and on October 21

Cyclist Vaughan Harring, pictured with wife Heidi, of West Street (household census: five people, four cars, five bicycles)

"Neither, both own the road. I believe it's the law, and it's a common road, it's a common thing that we all share. It's something that we all pay taxes on. It's for everybody walkers, riders, drivers."

Cyclist Ross Phillips of Mill Street in Chelmsford (household census: two people, two cars, four bicycles)

"I think that the bicyclists need to respect the motorists, and that the motorists need to respect the bicyclists. The problem is when that's not a mutually agreeable situation, either bikes get too aggressive or motorists simply don't care or ignore bicyclists."

Motorist Angela Smith of Pheasant Hill Lane (household census: four people, two cars, three bicycles)

" I think we've got to share the road. Carlisle is such a beautiful community. The reason I live here is so that I can enjoy the roads, enjoy the beautiful scenery, and do some riding with the kids."

Motorist Andy Pilla of Boston Road, Westford (household census: three people, two cars and two motorcycles, three bicycles)

"That's a good question to ask me. I think everybody owns the road, even the people walking on it. Because I drive a motorcycle, I don't feel like I get treated properly by people in cars most of the time. For some reason, I'm invisible."

Cyclist Harris Collingwood of Hawthorn Street, Cambridge (household census: two people, zero cars, one bicycle)

"We share the road. We both have a right to it. I've been on both sides of the divide. I know that there's a great deal of animosity between the two. Although they are natural enemies in the wild, I do believe they both can co-exist."

Motorist Annette Richard of 416 Westford Street, Carlisle (household census: four people, two cars, six bicycles)

"That's a really difficult question to answer. I think if you're a cyclist you think you do, but as a motorist I'm always fearful that I'm going to slaughter somebody as they ride side by side. I think we maybe need wider roads which is a hard thing to do in Carlisle."

Cyclists Marco and Brenda Bonnet of Woodbine Road (household census: two people, two cars, three bicycles)

"They should be shared. It's the same set of rules."

"Motorists because they can kill you."

Motorist Alex Parra, with his wife Laura Snowden, of Bellows Hill (household census: five people, two cars, five bicycles)

"Cylists should, but motorists do. Cars and drivers don't have the patience to let cyclists do what they need to do. Cyclists obviously go more slowly than cars. You need to slow down for them at a turn. Many drivers don't take that into account."

2001 The Carlisle Mosquito