New Bike Path, Less Parking In San Jose

And the taxi drivers aren’t happy about it. But since when do we care about the happiness of the taxi robbers?

Drive along the hotel zone in San Jose and you might notice something: More cyclists. San Jose residents have been asking for a safe bike lane for years, hoping for something similar to the malecon (concrete boardwalk) that runs along the shoreline in La Paz. San Jose finally obliged and tasked Fonatur with the project. The new bike path, which is now officially open, cost $550,000 USD.

The plans Fonatur used for the project were given to them by IMPLAN (the city’s planning and development department), like most city projects. However, Fonatur tells us the plans they were given were much more extensive than what they were expecting, so they didn’t follow them very closely (plans are really just suggestions, right?). Fonatur recently repaved the entire hotel zone, so they decided to put in the bike path at the same time.

The bike path is approximately three miles long and starts at Las Mananitas resort (in front of the Hyatt Place), heads all the way to the Holiday Inn, and then up Boulevard Mijares towards downtown San Jose, stopping one block short of downtown. There’s a place to park your bicycle so you can walk around downtown.

Another bike route goes from the hotel zone and circles the La Comer (formerly Mega) grocery store before ending at the Vidanta Golf Course on Highway 1. The lane runs along the right side of the road parallel to the curb and is for two-way bicycle traffic with a centerline down the middle. However, mind the icons, those pictures of bicycles on the path. It routes traffic on the left, like in England, not on the right like in the US and Canada. A series of tall cones separate the bike lanes from the street. There are a few places along the route to park your bike, but you will need to bring your own lock.

While cyclists are happy to finally have their bike path, others aren’t as thrilled with the new addition, for one main reason: the parking spaces it took out along the entire hotel zone. If you had a hard time finding parking before, it’s even worse now. There are only a handful of spots where you can legally park. There is no parking whatsoever on one side of the road thanks to the new bike path. And nearly all the parking on the other side has been converted to taxi parking to accommodate the taxis that lost their parking to the bike path.

But the relocation of the taxis and bus stops hasn’t deterred the taxi and bus drivers, who now just stop in the middle of the road to pick up passengers. Maybe it’s better to cause an accident than to lose a customer.