This article by Jay Walljasper from On the Commons is incredibly biased and poorly researched.
What is the evidence that protected bike lanes increases bicycle ridership?
Here in Santa Cruz County, California, we have 211 miles of dedicated bike lanes. Yet the percentage of bicycle ridership remains at less than 7%. There are obviously factors other than the presence of bike lanes that contribute to ridership.
As a lifelong practical cyclist, from Nebraska to Wyoming to Alaska to New Mexico to California, it has been my experience that bicycle ridership is a function of education of acting and potential bicyclists as legitimate users of public roads and highways. Further, it has been my observation that the automobile traffic speed is inversely proportional to the number of bicyclists and pedestrians present along any given stretch of road.
In the United States, bicycles are treated as toys. Segregating bicyclists and their vehicles away from automobile traffic reinforces the impression in the public mind that bicycles are not legitimate forms of transportation and therefore should not be given consideration by motorists. Further, this special treatment of bicyclists engenders resentment on the part of motorists, who see bicyclists as a privileged minority using the roads without paying taxes to support them.
It doesn't help that so many bicyclists do not follow the rules of the road, running stop lights and stop signs, riding against traffic, on sidewalks and crosswalks, and generally acting irresponsibly. This behavior is the result of a lack of bicycling education at home and in the schools, producing children who have no idea how to ride their vehicles responsibly on public roads.
Making more segregated bicycle facilities does not educate bicyclists on responsible bicycling, it merely provides one more excuse for ignorant bicyclists to ignore common courtesy and the rules of the road.