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Huh? Potomac yard is possibly the most bicycle friendly place in all of Alexandria right now. The side path does switch sides of the street, (though it does *exist* which is better than a lot of other places - I'm looking at you Duke Street) but the road itself is limited to 25 miles an hour and it makes perfect sense to just take the whole lane.

Contrast with the West end, or just going up Bradock Road or King Street (or the aforementioned Duke) west of the tracks. Where there are no other options.


Potomac Ave may be fine for biking now (I should know...was my bike commute route to the Pentagon last year), but as the city puts more development into Potomac Yard, that will no longer be the case. Jonathan's making the case that we need to plan for bike infrastructure in Potomac Yard as it gets built out.

Potomac Ave. is OK for biking but bike lanes would be an improvement. As for the speed limit, it might be 25 mph officially, but the long straightaway encourages some drivers to exceed the limit by quite a bit. I saw someone driving through there last week probably at close to 40 or 50 mph in an off-peak hour.

The side path was smooth when it was first built. But subsequent cuts and poor repaving jobs have made it a difficult ride for those on road bike tires.

Fair points, all, but I think it also comes down to the ongoing argument about culture.

There's been bikes on Potomac Avenue longer then there's been cars, and in my mind (and my experience), automobile drivers on that stretch are 'acculturated' to bike traffic. (compared to say, I don't know, St. Barnabas Road in PG county, where 'Bikes May Use Full Lane' is just laughable).

Putting bike lanes on a slow moving road implicitly teaches drivers that bikes do not belong on roads without them. Which leads to behavior that involves, for instance, getting cussed out when you're on a bike riding on a road as is your right. (which happened most recently to me, of all places, 4th street NW just north of Independence).

We (bicyclists) just need to continue to 'occupy' the road, as it were, in the Potomac Yards development.

My experience with cyclists, especially beginners who just want to be able to ride the way they drive or walk, is that they don't particularly want to "occupy" anything. They just want to feel "safe" when they ride to the store instead of driving to the store. This is why I am enthusiastic about bike lanes and avoid giving anyone the impression that they are required to pile on the helmets and the high-viz "safety equipment." (It is well known that a great way to make cycling--or anything else--seem unsafe is to emphasize safety).

I'm as enthusiastic about Critical Mass rides as the next guy (more so, based on arguments I've had), but still recognize that we need to build infrastructure for humans, not militants. When cycling for transportation is as common as walking for transportation, most of those drivers will also be fair weather coffee-shop riders as well, and will have heard that it is legal to get out of the bike lane and into traffic if you want.

youve never been on a critical amss ride if you think theyre for militants.

potomac yard is, for all the reasons krall mentions, a piece of shit BOUND to generate bike car hostility BY DESIGN. how they could fuck that up is a monument to the sheer stupidity of local "leaders"...look at the arlington side to see how it should have been done.

alexandria is so far from a quality place it is laughable. king street is one of the most historic in america....and its nothing but a car sewer. the morons who oversee this must be the same ones who like M street through georgetown, or an 8 lane constitution ave, etc..

How about that Politico poll. Who know biking was so popular for transportation? Can we cite this poll when asking for better facilities?

Biking on a 25MPH road is different from biking on a 45MPH road, or even 35MPH road. I'm not sure bike lanes make sense in general on 25 MPH roads, where either sharrows or just "share the road" signs may be more appropriate. But it sounds like this road needs more speed enforcement, or traffic calming.

Please keep in mind that Potomac Ave is signed 25 mph, but designed for 40 mph. Another way of saying it is that these conversations only make sense to me if we reference the actual speed of traffic. A third way of saying it is that I know a major road when I see one and major roads should have bike lanes. Or cycletracks.

Finally, just in case it isn't clear, I think we should be fighting for the right of normal humans, not uber bike commuters, to routinely use bicycles for transportation. We can't get the Safety in Numbers Effect until we get the numbers and there just are not that many uber bicycle commuters out there, the demographics of this blog notwithstanding.

Where did you catch that Potomac Ave was designed for 40 MPH? I haven't seen that in any documentation.

@Froggie, I watched people drive on it. The engineers can _say_ it was designed for 25 mph, just like they can slap a label on an apple that says "orange."

Jonathan: there's actual engineering/geometric data that goes into the speed a given road was designed for. Empirical evidence of how fast drivers go on the road does not play a factor in it.

Froggie: It does if they hit you.

Apples and oranges. You're really twisting the definition of design speed.

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