I was at a luncheon last week and had a chance to talk with Mike Anderson about his work in Minneapolis (a consultant who worked this summer on bicycle issues for the City of Minneapolis). With gas prices rising, bicycle commuting has become quite popular. Some intersection crossings in Minneapolis are seeing 400+ bicyclists in the peak hour. Minneapolis doesn't have a lot of historical bicycle volume data, but Mike says it anecdotally appears bike commuting is up four fold this summer. Their busiest crossings used to have about 100 bikes/hour. Minneapolis typically rates in the top three bicycling communities in the United States (next to Madison, WI and Portland, OR), so it isn't surprising that recreational bicyclists are taking advantage of the good infrastructure and ditching their cars.
Portland, OR has been experimenting with a system to give bicyclists a head start over vehicles at intersections with traffic signals. It is affectionately termed the Bike Box. Here is a great video from Streetfilms showing how it works. Maybe this is the next step for Minneapolis.