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Obama Becomes First Prez to Walk Down a Bike Lane on Inauguration Day

The networks were busy tripping over themselves trying to point out all the "firsts" during yesterday's inauguration ceremonies. But when Barack and Michelle Obama stepped out of the presidential motorcade to greet well wishers on Pennsylvania Avenue, they missed a huge one: Obama is now the first U.S. president to walk down a bike lane during his inauguration.

The center-median, two-way bicycle lane down Pennsylvania was implemented by DDOT back in summer 2010, so this is the first inauguration to feature the new look. Check out this clip from ABC News that shows the president stepping out of his limo and almost right on top of a bike stencil...

We've done some Streetfilms featuring some great bicycling from the capital.  Check out this Streetfilm on DC's Capital BikeShare and this one from the 2011 National Bike Summit, which features many scenes of the Pennsylvania Ave bike lane in action.

  • http://www.streetsblog.org Ben Fried

    Who will be the first president to bike down a bike lane for his/her inauguration?

  • Brad Aaron

    I was ogling that bike lane yesterday. Thanks Clarence.

  • qrt145

    Darn pedestrians, always walking on the bike lanes!

  • http://brooklynspoke.wordpress.com Doug G.

    If only Barack and Michelle had hopped on Capital Bikeshare bikes for the last leg of their trip...

  • http://pmp888.myopenid.com/ P. Product

    I can't believe you're applauding this.  I mean, look at the video - some guy in his big black limo is driving down the middle of the bike lane, then he opens his back door without even looking to see if some innocent dude on a brakeless fixie might be rolling through in the bike lane, just like he's supposed to do.  And Michelle is even walking in the wrong direction.  It's a travesty, I tell ya.  Where's angry Fred Armisen when you need him?

  • Andy B from Jersey

    Yes this is a big deal but I didn't hear any of the broadcasters or news people make mention of the bike lane in any of the reports I saw.  If they did, that would have been extra awesome.  

  • Jeremy

    If the media had mentioned the bike lane it would certainly be in a negative way.

  • http://twitter.com/Waltarrrrr Walt Arrrrr

    Ahhhh. Stop with the cynicism already. Seeing the bike lanes on Pennsylvania Avenue was my favorite part of the Inauguration Parade. Millions saw for the first time how much importance DC places on its bicycle network: Bike lanes that are not marginalized into the gutter, but placed right in the center of the street!

  • Jaycee

    forgive the non-sequitur but did anyone else notice the high-profile presence of Iris Weinshall yesterday? She accompanied Michelle
    Obama for the swearing in, and sat at POTUS' table at the Inaugural lunch.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y7JP7PWUNEJQQ4I7G6XWBQJPK4 Alzo

    "...the president stepping out of his limo and almost right on top of a bike stencil."  
    How would YOU like to be doored by the Commander-in-Chief?

  • Adam Herstein


  • Miles Bader

    @0ead2664c88f9cccc6acea731e628fc5:disqus Well, she's married to a fairly influential democratic senator, so it's not entirely surprising...

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