The number one need I see is simple: safety for bicycle riders. We hear from a wide range of ages and ability, "I do not feel safe on the roads."
In 2019 we sold roughly 165 new mountain bikes. Over the 2018 and 2019 seasons we sold collectively 16 road bikes. At least a dozen of those 2019 mountain bike sales were directly related to riders who no longer felt safe on the road and decided to get a mountain bike and find solitude on the trails.
When we opened out shop doors in 2012, all we sold were road-capable bicycles. We still have a solid base of people who brave the road but they have to get smart about where and when they want to ride on the road.
I was vice chair for the Nampa Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee appointed by the city of Nampa for six years. During our time, we worked with long-term planning and have made significant advancements for bicycle and pedestrian safety, but the ball is rolling too slow.
With the massive influx in population to our area, we will continue to be behind the curve when it comes to bicycle and pedestrian facilities. Adding bike lanes will not solve the problem. It is much more complex and requires attentive operators of all vehicles.
Facilities will definitely help, but they are costly and take time. Education and punishment of the vehicle operators should be a top priority.