More coverage of 15th Street Cycletrack repaving - "There will always be open lanes for vehicular traffic and access for pedestrians. But there may be a period during the work when cyclists may not be able to access these bike lanes." And still more here.
Guess what? All the TV news channels have picked up the video of the red-light running cyclist getting hit by a taxi. Imagine that. That they would love a video that reaffirms the opinion of most people that cyclists constantly "blow through lights." Fantastic. Here's FOX and NBC. The stories are pretty even-handed I'd say, and for those wondering about the legality of this ride "DC Bike Party works in conjunction with police and DDOT in trying to make their meet-up events safe for everyone."
Earlier today "D.C. Police Chief Cathy Lanier will discuss the beating of a cyclist on a popular bike path, allegations of racial bias in marijuana arrests, MPD s summer safety plan and more on NewsTalk."
There's a TPB meeting tomorrow. They have a presentation on BTWD 2013 (from which the graphic below comes) - there are more registrants from Virginia than either DC or MD and Rosslyn is the biggest pit stop (not Freedom Plaza).
A 7-year-old boy was flown to Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., Monday evening after he ran into the side of a car while riding his bicycle on Papa Court off Security Road
Military bases - of which the DC area has more than a few - will become more bicycle friendly under rules identified by the new the United Facilities Criteria (UFC) for Installation Master Planning.
Harry Jaffe has re-booted the bike lanes=war on cars meme in his latest column.
here's something almost quaint about four-wheeled, internal-combustion vehicles plying the streets of the nation's capital. Lane by lane, politicians, city planners and transportation officials are squeezing cars out of downtown.
Not really. I suspect that over the last decade, the lane-miles available to cars are down about 0.1%. So if that's squeezing, it's like a python attacking a blue whale. But even if it were true, isn't squeezing cars to make room for people a good policy?
This will become abundantly clear to drivers who depend on L Street to maneuver east from Georgetown to the heart of the city on 12th Street. Starting this week, the city will begin a three-week project to repave the one-way thoroughfare. When work is done, bicyclists will have a separate lane on the north side of the street. The bike lane, separated by plastic posts, will consume the parking spaces.
This is good for bikers and parking lot owners but not so for those of us who need to park on L Street. Drivers will lose a lane during rush hour.
It's true that 150 on-street parking spaces will be lost (or at least, that's what the Examiner is reporting elsewhere). But people will still be able to park. They will just have to do so more often in a parking garage where the price is not subsidized. Alternatively, there should be less motor vehicle traffic in general and so less competition for the on-street parking that does exist.
I am of two minds on the L Street project, which could become a battleground between cyclists and drivers.
You mean like it didn't, in the end, on 15th Street? Yes, the Examiner would love a good old-fashioned bike/car war to give them something to write about, but will it happen - unlikely.
As a cyclist, I am overjoyed. When the city creates a matching bike lane on M Street, perhaps in early 2013, I will be able to commute from home to work in dedicated bike lanes. But as a driver, I question whether it's fair to autos.
Right. It hardly seems fair to give one whole east-west lane to cyclists and leave them with only 20-30 for themselves.
I see it creating miles of traffic if cops allow double parking, and I fear accidents if cyclists and drivers don't respect one another. Bikers always lose.
How is that any different than the status quo? The only way I can see, is that the cycletracks will make cyclists safer and make them less dependent on the whims of drivers to give respect. Let's face it, cyclists failing to respect drivers isn't really the issue.
"You can't assume people are going to be reasonable, rational or responsible," says AAA Mid-Atlantic spokesman John Townsend.
That's a good point. But nonetheless, we should let pretty much everyone get behind the wheel of a moving bullet anyway - and then limit enforcement.
"I'm not saying it's a war on motorists, but it fails to recognize that the vast majority of people still rely on cars."
Not in DC they don't. And the point is to make those who depend on cars, less dependent on them.
D.C. Planning Director Harriet Tregoning says more and more D.C. residents are going carless. From 2006 to 2011, 40,000 people moved into the city, which created 60,000 jobs, "but we saw the same rate of car ownership. We are shrinking in terms of cars in D.C."
Tregoning -- a true believer in biking, walking and public transportation -- says D.C. weathered the recession in part because many new residents are attracted to the city so they can be carless, pay off student loans, work and throw cash into the economy.
"It's not even remotely radical to strike a balance between transportation choices," she says.
With the reconstruction of L Street, the balance is tipping toward two wheels.
True, but only if going from 98.42% of the street space dedicated to cars, to 98.39% of it is tipping towards two wheels.
At an ANC meeting this week (as reported by GGW), DDOT presented preliminary concepts for the two blocks of 15th Street NW north of U. Currently a bike lane - on the right hand side and opposite the cycletrack - exists on 15th Street.
The new design would extend the cycletrack, still protected by parked cars, along the west side of 15th all the way to Euclid. But the extension might look different - possibly better - than what is south of U
DDOT could just build the cycle track in this intersection along the edge of the roadway, separated with poles, as with the rest of the cycle track today. Other options, though, elevate it up to sidewalk level like many European cities do. The tree boxes would still separate the track from the sidewalk, but then one of a few different curb treatments would divide it from the roadway.
At the meeting, DDOT planner Gabriela Vega said the agency was still weighing the pros and cons of the last three designs' barriers between the cycle track and the parking lane. The barriers in the last three designs all include permeable pavers that allow the ground to absorb more stormwater.
You can see these designs in the image below.
In addition to the more definitive separation between the cycletrack, sidewalk and roadway, you can see that at the intersection, the space at the end of the parking is filled with a stormwater planter.
In addition to the extended cycletrack, the design shows bike boxes at every approach to the "Death Star" intersection and a bike lane on Florida north of W (where currently there is none).
There are two options for how to align the intersection, but for cyclists I don't see much of a difference, though one shows painted bike boxes and the other does not, I think that might be an oversight, not a design difference.
My only concern about this is the possibility of conflict between downhill and uphill cyclists on 15th north of W. Cyclists in one direction could be going very fast, and cyclists in the other might be looking down as they pump their way up the hill. I fear it could be an opportunity for a very bad head-on collision. Perhaps the cycletrack needs to be wider there.
Good morning. Not much for me to report, but soon I'll be able to start biking again, which I'm excited about.
The hit and run in Bethesda might not have involved a hit. "There may or may not have been actual contact between the biker and the
van," he said. After the accident, the cyclist said the van made a
sudden lane change and hit her, Didone said, but preliminary
investigations of the damage did not show any signs of the van hitting
The National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board plans to apply for up to $29 million in federal stimulus funds to help pay for seven projects around transit stops from New Carrollton to Prince George's County, according to the draft application.
Proposed projects include
Forest Glen Metro, Montgomery County: Build a pedestrian and bike underpass to bypass vehicle traffic at Georgia Avenue and elevator to improve access from Metro station to Holy Cross Hospital, add 10 Capital Bikeshare stations.
Army Navy Drive, Arlington County: Add two-way bike lanes separated from vehicle traffic called cycle tracks, 10 Capital Bikeshare stations along Columbia Pike, wider sidewalks.
VRE stations, Northern Virginia: Add 35 bike lockers to eight commuter train stations.
Fort Totten Metro, D.C.: Redesign two streets to Metro station, including adding and widening sidewalks, adding secure bike parking.
Twinbrook Metro, Rockville: Build bike and pedestrian improvements on four roads, 26 intersections to station.
West Hyattsville Metro, Prince George's County: Rebuild Ager Road and add bike lanes, light-emitting diode street lighting improvements on way to Metro station.
This would be a nice win - especially for Arlington cyclists. The Examiner does make a mistake
The grant application seeks money for development-rich Arlington to get the region's first separated "cycle track," which means bike lanes running in both directions separated from vehicle traffic.
It might be Arlington's first (if you don't count the tiny one in Rosslyn) but not the region's first. There is a cycletrack on 15th in Washington.
It is nice to see the region once again put biking and walking forward as part of their TIGER proposal.
Unsupringly, Capital Bikeshare may close if Hurrican Irene related weather creates conditions on the ground warrant it.
Surpringly, my work sent out an email announcing that all bikes have to be moved in because of the storm. And that any bikes left locked to bike racks outside will have the lock cut and be brought inside. Bikes are normally not allowed inside. This email was sent 2 hours before lock cutting was to begin. Lock cutting began at 4:30 when many people might still be at work.
"Pentagon Police briefly shut down Washington Boulevard in both directions between I-395 and the George Washington Parkway. Authorities were looking at an unattended bicycle on the fence line of the facility."
The Fairfax County cyclist hit by an ice cream truck on bike to work day this year - on his first ever bike commute - suffered broken ribs and a punctured lungs, but appears to have recovered. "The truck’s driver, Impha Gassama, 52, of New Carrollton, Md., was charged with failing to yield the right of way from a private drive"
So what did I miss while I was gone? If you used your own bike to commute yesterday, I'm guessing you were happier about that decision than usual. As I drove slowly (barely) across the 14th Street Bridge, I saw people walking the other way, and they were not on the bike/ped path.
Everything is coming together as the UN planned it. “As you look at companies looking to recruit, you tend to see that shift to an urbanized setting where it’s mixed use,” said Jay Farmer, vice president of Jones Lang LaSalle Inc. “They want a place where they can go and have breakfast and walk or ride their bike to work.”
If Secret Service tells/told you to move out of the cycletrack and ride into oncoming traffic on the far side on 15th, let WABA know: firstname.lastname@example.org
DCist does some actual reporting on the MLK memorial and bikes. While the fact sheet for DC Residents day says no bikes allowed, even if walked, NPS will allow them when they take over management of the site. Still, there probably will not be a bike valet for the dedication and I've heard nothing from CaBi about a Capital Bikeshare corral.
Since the completion of [the other cycletrack] facilities, we have revised plans for L and M Streets to a 50% design, and have commenced studying the existing innovative facilities (including the contraflow lanes on New Hampshire). Throughout the process, DDOT has been in contact with adjacent communities, business improvement districts, major property owners/managers, federal regulatory bodies (CFA, NCPC), regional bodies (WMATA, MWCOG), as well as interested citywide parties (WABA, ANCs, development community).
Transportation Planner Jim Sebastian, who oversees DDOT’s Bicycle Program, says “We are waiting on the completion of our studies of the existing cycletracks on Pennsylvania Avenue and 15th Street, and the analysis of the L & M Street corridors, before making a determination on proceeding with the concepts for cycletracks.” DDOT recognizes the need for an east-west bicycle connection through downtown, but we are obligated to consider the impacts on all users (transit riders, pedestrians, drivers, cyclists, the disabled, businesses, residents, etc.) before making a commitment to proceed.
DDOT must take into account many conflicting interests within our transportation network. It is DDOT’s responsibility to consider the likely effects of any new street configuration, and to come up with a recommendation that balances these competing needs. We encourage the community and their political representatives to analyze the same data and draw their own conclusions. DDOT will commit to making any information relevant to these corridors accessible to all, and to discuss at that time the options on the table.
At the same time, it’s also worth noting that DDOT continues to expand the infrastructure for cycling in the District and plans to install 10 miles of bike lanes across the city this year. “The District is committed to providing a world class bicycling infrastructure,” says Acting Director Terry Bellamy, “And we will continue to work on a balanced and safe implementation plan for our community with our citizens help.”