Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Ride No. 7 Nov. 2nd.

Yay... I did it... met my coffeeneuring challenge - now it's time to loose some of the weight I must have gained from all those goodies  :-)

Again, decided to combine a trip into town with a coffeeneuring stop.  This time it was Dean's Market - one of very few eateries in Oak Ridge (I only counted two) that have a bicycle rack in front  (and as reported previously, one appears to have been stolen)...

This establishment contains two parts - a very nice "comfort food" restaurant that is very popular, has great food and very fair prices, and a smaller "market" which resembles a small bakery.  A few outdoor tables to accommodate pet owners, and sweaty cyclists would have been a good addition....

I ordered a fried coconut cream pie and a cup of coffee, and took my prize to the little garden on the south side of the plaza - so technically this is a coffee shop without walls entry...

Dean's is located int he same plaza as Ruzzleberries (see earlier post).  The locating is a block away from the "official Cross-Town Bike Route" (see earlier posts).   The area has relatively low car traffic,
but otherwise no facilities for cyclists.  An experienced and careful road cyclists should be OK getting there.


2 comments:

  1. Ok Gery, you beat me again this year ; ) I just did #6. Nice blog, but it does sound like a bit of a cycling desert there. On the other hand, we are setting records for rain and dreariness. Definitely fender country here.

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    1. It's not exactly a dessert, but It's not Everett (not to mention Amsterdam) either. There is certainly lots and lots of rural riding to be had outside of town, and Oak Ridge does have a plan (at least on the books) to improve things as far as cycling infrastructure in the City. There is a road - Oak Ridge Turnpike that runs the length of the city - about 12 miles or so with about 3 miles of that right through the town center. The section of the turnpike that is west of the town center has a "standard US" bicycle lane, and it connects to a state highway with a very wide shoulder - thus creating a nice relatively safe ride of about 30 miles out-and-back to the end of the route at I-40. As an added bonus this road is incredibly flat... Of-course, as is inevitable with such arrangement, there has been at least one recent fatality when an inattentive motorist drifted onto the shoulder and struck a cyclist.

      The City has designated a mish-mash of streets, which more-or-less parallels the remaining "Eastern Half" of the Turnpike - including the 3 mile section through the City Center. That "route" has potential, but needs works. It is a little hilly (compare to the Turnpike which is flat as a pancake), and needs some relatively simple changes as far as adding traffic calming measures, and changing priorities at intersections, to make it safer for cyclists. Also some much needed repaving, and removal of a disused rail crossing would help well. Sadly, about 70% of destinations in town are relatively inconvenient to this route - making cycling as a mean of transportation (as opposed to recreation) very difficult...

      The owner of the local bike shop (pleasantly surprising to have a real bike shop in a town this small) told me that on a given day he would have two newcomers come into the shop - the first one saying how wonderful riding around Oak Ridge is, and the second one complaining bitterly. The truth of the matter is that they are both correct...

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