DDOT recently hired a consultant to assess the impact of multiple entertainment venues, most notably the addition of a 20,000 seat soccr stadium, on the transportation network in the Buzzard Point/Waterfront area. This is a follow-on study to one does as part of the Anacostia Waterfront Initiative.
Approximately 8.5 percent of commuters utilize bicycles in the southwest region (highest density contained within the boundary of I Street, South Capitol Street, M Street, and 3rd Street SW)
With multiple event venues in the Study area, an increase in bicycle use is expected. To support and encourage bicycle use, expansion of Capital Bikeshare locations, provision of bike valet f acilities, addition of bike racks, improvements to bike routes and facilities are required to facilitate bicycle accessibility to the event facilities.
To improve safety, Road diets or “right-sizing” on residential streets by restriping would reduce the number of through travel lanes on a roadway and repurpose it for other uses, such as revised channelization, improved pedestrian and bicycle facilities, on-street parking, and/or landscaping.
Baseline future changes:
I Street would be restriped from its current configuration (one 8-foot parking lane, one 5-foot bicycle lane, and one 11-foot travel lane in each direction) by removing parking on the curb lane to accommodate one shared travel/bicycle lane and one travel/turn lane in each direction.
N Street SE/Tingey Street SE would accommodate a shared vehicle/bicycle lane between South Capitol Street and 4th Street SE.
Potential future improvements
For K Street SW, Conversion of 1 ½ linear blocks of Lansburgh Park from existing open space and offset sidewalk to either a bicycle boulevard or a local street with connecting sidewalks on each side
For L Street SW, Conversion of 2 linear blocks of publicly owned land from existing surface parking, and associated circulation aisles, to either a bicycle boulevard or a local street with connecting sidewalks on each side
Bicycle and pedestrian connections along O Street SW would mainly entail tie-ins along the circumferential sidewalks at the various culs-de-sac.
Enhancements to the portion of the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail running along Fort McNair include an increase in trail width and modified hardscape materials that are more characteristic of portions of the trail that run along the water’s edge. (Improvements to differentiate this segment of the trail from standard sidewalks in the vicinity)
Install signs to show bicycle lanes and shared-use paths
Provide ample bicycle parking near the soccer stadium. The Capital Bikeshare program continues to grow in the District and throughout the DC region. Expand the Capitol Bikeshare program in Buzzard Point to improve the access from Waterfront, Navy Yard-Ballpark, and Anacostia stations. Provide bike racks near the Stadium to encourage bike use.
Explore the possibility of adding bicycle facilities at the under-utilized park and ride lot of Anacostia Metrorail station.
Free yoga and fitness classes are coming to the Metropolitan Branch Trail this summer. Brought to you by the MBT5K, classes will be held on Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:30 PM, weather permitting. Walk, run, bike, skate or drive in (on street parking available).
TUESDAYS: Yoga with Crystal Moore in the mini park at 4th & S Streets NE (and the trail intersection). Bring towel or mat crystalmooreyoga
Stephen sent me this photo of an alternative sharrow, "priority shared-lane markings", design that was spotted in Allston, Massachusetts. He adds that
There are also signs telling drivers they need to move to the left to pass. I'm only one data point, but I rode in the "lane" for its full half-mile length without being passed unsafely, honked at, or tailgated.
It sounds like the concept is still being evaluated, but I think it is miles ahead of the normal sharrow, which in my experience produces no change in driver behavior whatsoever.
There is more here, courtesy of the Boston Globe. They call it part of a national experiment to test innovative bike facilities.
In coming months, Boston Bikes staff will take a census of how many cyclists use that stretch of road to determine whether the “sharrows on steroids” increase ridership. Next spring, they will paint the area between the dashed lines lime green, and conduct another ridership survey.
Freedman’s office will report their findings to the federal government. And if they’re successful, the idea may get exported to other cities around the country — and to other parts of Boston.
DDOT is preparing a proposal for Benning Road and Bridge Multi-Modal Transportation Improvements from Oklahoma Avenue to the Minnesota Avenue and Benning Road Metrorail Stations. This area intersections with both sides of the Anacostia Riverwalk Trails and also represents of the few places that cyclists can cross the Great Wall of Anacostia (DC-295 and the railroad tracks). If you've ever tried to make this crossing on bike it can be harrowing. Traffic goes way too fast on Benning Road, the sidewalks are no more appealing and getting onto the bridge requires crossing a highway on-ramp. So bike improvements are needed. Those who ride - or would like to ride - this route should consider attending.
A cycletrack from the Anacostia to the bridge would be great.
WHEN: Wednesday, May 28, 2014, 6 p.m. – 7:30 p.m
WHERE: Department of Employment Services (DOES) Building
Our old friend Pat Herity is back, and this time he's attacking the bike/ped project funding in a proposed $100 million transit referendum that earmarks $85 million for new bikeways and pedestrian paths. Since this article is on a small-government anti-tax website, I know that the headline "Fairfax eyes $85 million more for bike-walk projects" is supposed to make me angry, but it doesn't.
Of course they're not only upset about bike/ped funding in this referendum, but all bike/ped funding
Update:Bruce Wright, Chairman, Fairfax Advocates for Better Bicycling says that it is not "on top of" the $200 million, but that the referendum is the means by which some of the $200 million will be funded. The $200 million in mostly pedestrian projects were originally going to be funded using the new Virginia transportation funds. Some people in the VA legislature are saying those funds should only be used for road and transit projects, because bike and ped projects don't "relieve congestion." The county wants to address those concerns and so now the county wants to use a bond referendum for $85 million worth of those projects. It's unclear where the other $125 million is coming from. This sets a bad precedent by caving to the naysayers and making it more difficult for other jurisdictions to include ped and bike projects in their requests for the new money.
That's planned over 6 years. During which time $381 million will be spent on road widening, $155 million on roadway extensions, $66 million on spot improvements, and $195 million on interchanges, which doesn't seem to bother them at all.
One of the more controversial pieces isn’t even in the $85 million package. A $92 million overpass spanning the Dulles Toll Road reserves more than 35 feet of the 59-foot-wide bridge for bicyclists and pedestrians.
I assume this is about the $91.75 million Dulles Toll Road - Soapstone Drive Overpass. I can't find any measurements for the proposed cross-section on that road, but part of the reason is that the car space is so low is that the bridge will not need a turning lane, otherwise it matches the road before and after the bridge.
It is unlikely that the SC project, even if the proposed plan is approved soon, will be constructed this decade....Soapstone, as it approaches Sunrise Valley, consists of two active traffic lanes, with a center lane for turning, plus two bicycle lanes. This represents a cost advantage for the actual crossing bridge over the DTR, since it will only need to consist of two lanes (no turns on the bridge), two bicycle lanes and one shared use path. it will only need to consist of two lanes (no turns on the bridge), two bicycle lanes and one shared use path.
About the bike-walk projects,
“This doesn’t make any more sense than a $1 million bus stop,” Supervisor Pet Herrity said
That's a pretty low bar, it's got to make more sense than that right?
Herrity said he supports “reasonable bicycling projects,” but he told Watchdog.org the county’s plan is a bridge too far.
“We’re looking to spend more than we can possibly utilize,” he said, pointing to plans for a 10-foot pathway near the Lorton landfill. “It’s in the middle of nowhere.”
They even try to undermine it with the words of an actual cyclist
“Bike lanes (between roadways and curbs) become debris collectors,” said Dan Lehman, a member of the Potomac Pedalers club.
They do become debris collectors, but that's not a reason to not have them. It's a reason to sweep them.
But proposed “Sharrows” — where cars and bikes are directed to use the same traffic lanes — can be flat-out dangerous.
“They create road rage of a different kind,” Lehman observed.
I don't know of any evidence that sharrows are dangerous, or that they create road rage. But if road-rage infused drivers are a safety threat, then the solution is not fewer sharrows.
I couldn't find anything about this referendum BTW. It's not even on the board's agenda for the day they say it is. I will update if I learn more about it. Hopefully FABB will respond.
Update: Here's a link to the presentation on the bond referendum. As I read it, the bond referendum was to be more balanced, as was the state funding. But when the state funding became all roads and transit, the bond was modified to be mostly bike/ped. So it's a bit of a shell game, made necessary by the state and federal governments' willingness to fund roads and unwillingness to fund bike/ped projects.
In what I think is an under-reported story, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a final rule requiring rear visibility technology in all new vehicles under 10,000 pounds by May 2018.
It's hard to say how much this rule will help your average adult cyclist (backing up fatalities are only about 1% of all bike fatalities), but it is a much larger factor in fatalities involving child cyclists.
On average, there are 210 fatalities and 15,000 injuries per year caused by backover crashes. NHTSA has found that children under 5 years old account for 31 percent of backover fatalities each year, and adults 70 years of age and older account for 26 percent.
While the FARS database is a census of motor vehicle crashes, it only catalogues crashes that are related to a public road. If a fatal crash occurs entirely on private property, (e.g., in a driveway, parking lot, on a farm) it will not be included in the FARS, in accordance with the criteria defining FARS cases. Likewise, if a motor vehicle related injury or property damage only crash occurs, several factors may cause the case to not appear in any database. These include the lack of a police report, a lack of insurance involvement, and a lack of documentation regarding medical treatment. In addition, NASS-GES does not include certain cases because they do not fit the definition of a traffic crash. Thus, we not only lack information regarding backover fatalities, but also backover crashes occurring on private property that result in injuries and property damage
So the number of cyclists deaths from car collisions are unreported every year because they don't include this kind of crash. But these new rules are expected to reduce the number of backover crashes and that's good news.
Including vehicles that already have systems installed, 58 to 69 lives are expected to be saved each year once the entire on-road vehicle fleet is equipped with rear visibility systems meeting the requirements of today's final rule.
The League of American Bicyclists released it's latest list of Bicycle Friendly Communities (BFC) during Bike to Work Week. Not much in the area for BFC awards (Portsmouth, VA is Bronze!), but College Park did make the list of Honorable Mentions, joining Hagerstown from 2013.
I don't want to jinx anything, but about 3 months ago, we sort of set a record for the "longest period" without any "local" cycling fatalities.
I've been keeping track of such things since the blog started and have some data from before then - back to about 2004, so really it's the longest stretch in the past 10 years, possibly longer. By local I mean DC and Alexandria and Arlington Montgomery and Prince George's Counties. So that's why recent fatalities in Anne Arundel don't show up.
We've now gone 343 days, and counting, without a single cyclist death (Jahbari Jawon Howe on 6/14/13 being the last). That beats the previous best of 263 days from 9/11/2007 - 5/31/2008. So be careful out there and let's see if we can keep it going.