Google Bike Maps

ow when you look up directions somewhere on Google Maps, you can choose public transit, walking, car, or bicycle directions. This is super nice because it opens up many options for where you can go and how you can get there. I’ve realized because of a bike trail going through an industrial area by my house, I can get to 44th street quite easily. Or I can take residential streets to get to church. I’d never thought of it. I always pictured myself on the busy main streets I drive on, getting honked at by the many cars who can’t share a road (either because it’s too narrow or because they’re not used to it.)

I will try to ride my bike places this spring using this new Google Bike layer, and I will report back to you on it. I already contacted Google, probably along with 38 other GR cyclists, about 28th street and how it’s not a good route for any bike to get anywhere. And my feedback is really vital because I’m not one of those bike snobs who wears the shorts and can handle any element…I don’t even have a road bike but a mountain bike. I do have a basket, however. And things like to bounce out of it.  I am also NOT a chic fashion cyclists like the ones they talk about on chic green websites, the hipster girls who ride old vintage falling-apart bikes everywhere in a dress and huge sunglasses because it looks cool.  I’m just kim. Bikin’ along my Kimscape.

Nothing beats this video introducing the new feature. I love the first part with all the bikes riding past Google headquarters and then this random pedal-powered machine with four guys on it trailing behind. I Laughed Out Loudly.

Here’s ANOTHER vehicle Google has invented: The streetview trike. This will likely get pictures of un-drivable pathways so that streetview can truly be comprehensive. There’d have to be thousands of them to get everything. But Google can do it. They’re creepy that way.