He adds "Cyclists on the Mt Vernon Trail, by National Airport. The crosswalk by
a road connecting to the Mt Vernon Parkway has long had a stop sign
and another sign saying "dismount before crossing," which I
find ridiculous. Dismount??? So, I was shocked to see a pair of new
signs added a few yards before the existing signs, saying
"dismount bike ahead." ....
Notice there are no signs for automobile traffic, even though the
painted crosswalk means they have a requirement to yield, not the
other way around. Arlington, VA."
I like how the new one is about the dismount ahead, like the reason why people weren't complying is that they were caught off guard by it.
Here are a few tidbits about what some Maryland advocates did over the summer.
Jack Cochrane is known as the key bicycle advocate in Montgomery County, but he is also a summertime advocate in western New York. Until recently, Route 394 had a door-zone bike lane as it passed through one of his favorite towns. He wrote the state department of transportation:
But after resurfacing, the line separating the parking area from the bike lane has not been repainted (all the other lines were repainted). This creates a wider parking area at the expense of the bike lane. The bike lane symbols are gone too. Please leave it that way. Now bicyclists are free to ride in the travel lane (safely away from parked cars) without drivers getting upset at them for not riding in the bike lane.
He wanted to urge the state to place "Use Full Lane" (R4-11) signs there, but New York State explicitly decided not to adopt the sign.
Another Maryland advocate persuaded the police on Long Beach Island (New Jersey) to change the text on a variable message sign from "Cyclists obey traffic laws. Stop at red lights and stop signs" to "Walk to the left, bicycles ride right." When a driver wrote a typical letter to the local paper urging a police crackdown on scofflaw cyclists, he wrote a letter commending the police.
Clueless drivers ... threaten the lives of cyclists and pedestrians...So many drivers park on the sidewalk that one must assume that most drivers do not know what a sidewalk is... So many drivers fail to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks that one would assume that many drivers do not know what a crosswalk is...So many drivers speed that one must assume that drivers mentally add 10 mph to every posted speed limit—not so different from cyclists who run red lights and stop signs (5 mph instead of 0 mph)...Almost all drivers make illegal right turns on the bike lanes along Atlantic, Beach, and Long Beach Boulevard south of Beach Haven....Many drivers illegally honk their horns at cyclists riding in the center of the lane for their own safety...Fortunately, the Long Beach Township police are trying to educate drivers and cyclists on how to be safe.
Finally, the Maryland Department of Transportation's director of bicycle and pedestrian affairs spent some time in the cooler climate of Calgary, Alberta. The Calgary Heraldreported
Today, the conference heard from a delegate from Maryland named Michael Jackson, who examined schools in his state that have actually banned students from walking or riding a bike to school. It seems absurd, but it’s not uncommon, and it’s hard not to think poor understanding of cycling drives some of those prohibitions.
(Jim Titus is a bicycle advocate from Prince Georges County, Maryland)
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
WAMU reports on the "Bicycles may use full lane." signs in PG County. PG County unfortunately wants to use the Share The Road signs on roads with only one lane in either direction. "We are utilizing the two signs, as not only are we concerned about the county's liability, but also about the safety of the bicyclists," says Hubbard. I'm not sure how Share the Road signs make cyclists safer than "Bicycles may use full lane." signs or how they protect the state from liability.
OT: This is an interesting and unintentionally humorous look at what artists in 1900 though life in 2000 would look like. Lot's of underwater living, dirigibles and personal propeller packs. No bikes oddly. They're so wrong on so many things - and yet there are a few items (roller skates, the roomba, movies with sound, airplanes) that they got right in theory.
More grants: Montgomery County has been awarded $40 million in grants for transportation projects at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda. Defense officials say the money will be used on projects including a bicycle and pedestrian path under Maryland Route 355 that will connect the medical center and a Metrorail station. But I doubt many cyclists will use this path.
The driver who struck and killed cyclist Lanie Kruszewski in Richmond last week claims he thought he hit a deer. Since 2002, he's been charged with reckless driving four times with one conviction. In two of the other cases, the charge was reduced to a lesser speeding violation. In the fourth case, the charge was amended to improper control/driving. In addition to those cases, Webb has gotten seven other speeding tickets. One of those was amended to disregarding a highway sign, and two were amended to a violation of defective equipment. He also was found guilty of a violation involving a right turn on red. So yes, it is impossible to lose your license in Virginia. As with the Pettigrew case I might believe that the guy thought he hit a deer. And, as in that case, I really don't care. It doesn't explain why he hit a cyclist with a light on her bike. And one has an obligation to determine - with 100% certainty - that they did hit a deer, and not a person, before leaving. So, while morally-speaking, driving away because you thought you hit a deer is better than doing so to avoid legal implications of hitting a person; legally it should be treated as the same thing. If his 2004 Dodge Durango has Airbag Control Module similar to the one the driver in the David Williams case had, I'm giving 10-1 odds that he was speeding.
The D.C. Office of Motion Picture and Television Development recognized the Anacostia Riverwalk Trail as the August 2012 One City Location of the Month. "By the end of the year, the District anticipates opening a second fiberglass bridge east of the river will complete trail connections on both sides of the river from South Capitol Street to Benning Road. Design of the Kenilworth Gardens segment, which will extend the trail from Benning Road to the Bladensburg Trail in Maryland, is to conclude by the end of 2012."
Capital Bikeshare is setting up on the campus of Gallaudet University today. I don't mean to be insensitive, but I rely pretty heavily on hearing when I bike. Does anyone know how the hearing impaired compensate for this? If biking with two headphones on is illegal, how does the law treat biking when deaf?
Local bike advocate Veronica Davis was honored by the White House as a Transportation Innovator and Champion of Change. "In addition to co-founding Nspiregreen, a sustainability and environmental consulting company, Davis helped launch Black Women Bike. "
The list of local Maryland Highways that will get "Bicycles May Use Full Lane" signs.
American Kristin Armstrong successfully defended her Olympic Gold Medal in the Women's Individual Time Trial. On the men's side, Bradley Wiggins added to his Tour de France win by winning the Gold at home. That makes him the most decorated Olympian in British history with 7 medals. Winning the 2012 "Dan Jansen Award" for being kicked in the gut by the Olympics - Taylor Phinney once again came in 4th place.
Yesterday the Maryland State Highway Administration posted nine white rectangular "Bicycles May Use Full Lane" signs along a two-mile stretch of Glenn Dale Road (MD-953). Although Baltimore, Laurel, and the University of Maryland have used these signs, these are the first signs on a state highway. Because SHA issued detailed guidance on these signs in May, we were expecting these signs to be posted by the end of June, but the derecho set things back.
Greatergreaterwashington will soon have a couple of articles putting these signs in context, but since the Washcycle has been covering these signs extensively for more than a year, here I will focus on what's new.
The big surprise was that SHA posted the white rectangular R4-11 sign, instead of its yellow diamond equivalent, W16-1(3). An email to me from SHA Administrator Melinda Peters said that SHA had put up the wrong sign, W16-1(2), "Bicycles May Be In Roadway", and said that the signs would be replaced with either R4-11 or W16-1(3). But everything else pointed toward the yellow diamond sign being posted:
For the last 6 months, many SHA officials had been making plans to use the yellow W16-1(2) sign, because SHA preferred the yellow diamond sign over the white regulatory sign.
The R4-11 signage plan that SHA sent the District of Columbia (DDOT) last Spring has yellow diamond signs on most roads, except near the DC line and intersections with interstate highways.
Outgoing traffic director Tom Hicks clearly prefered the yellow sign, and was planning to approve "Bicycles May Use Full Lane" last fall until he got some erroneous legal advice that the same wording can not appear on both types of signs. So he advocated the "Bicycles May Be In Roadway" sign for a time, until the Administrator decided in favor of the "Use Full Lane" wording. (In the mean time a lawyer who had actually researched the issue determined that the same wording can appear on bith a regulatory or warning sign.)
A least one state employee who strongly opposed even including the yellow sign in the guidance, had predicted that SHA would almost never use the white sign if the yellow sign was approved.
My hunch is that the new Office of Traffic and Safety director Cedric Ward has a greater preference for the R4-11 sign than his predecessor, Tom Hicks. When I spoke with him last month, he had mentioned a preference for R4-11 in circumstances where I was sure that Tom would have wanted the yellow diamond sign.
What's next? The Greatergreaterwashington article includes a table of Washington-are roads where the signs are expected. That table was provided to advocates by SHA's bike-ped coordinator Dustin Kuzan, based on the signage plan that SHA's Office of Traffic and Safety sent to the District of Columbia (DDOT) last spring. Because that plan assumed that SHA would use the "Bicycles May Be in Roadway" sign, initial suspicions were that the clearer wording of the sign might induce SHA to use the sign on fewer roads. But the table sent out by Dustin Kuzan suggests that SHA did not scale back its plans, just because the wording of the sign has changed.
Nevertheless, no dates are attached to the plan, so we don't know when the rest of these highways will see the signs. Bob Herstein told me last spring that money had been budgeted for all of those highways. Because the density of signs in the new guidance is greater than originally assumed, however, cost alone would increase the time it takes to carry out the plan. That's not necessarily bad. The opportunity to learn could be lost if all the signs are posted at once.
SHA should put some traffic cameras on the highways where the signs are expected, to get a good baseline of driver and cyclist behavior, and then leave the cameras operating when the signs come up. The available research is on 4-lane roads and one might reasonably expect that the effect of the signs on 2-lane roads may be different. Even if SHA does not have the funds to process and analyze the raw data, others may be able to get funding for a study.
A slow roll out may also help to get community buy-in. The Glenn Dale Citizens Association requested the signs for Glenn Dale Road, but elsewhere no one has explained the signs to residents. Yet Prince Georges County transportation planners regularly meet with all sorts of citizens groups. It might be a good idea for the planners to explain the expected signs at these meetings, before they actually go up.
(Jim Titus lives on Glenn Dale Road, and is also on WABA's board of directors and Maryland's Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee (MBPAC). The opinions expresses here do not necessarily reflect the official views of either WABA or MBPAC.)
As part of the O’Malley Administration’s Cycle Maryland Initiative, Governor Martin O’Malley today announces 28 winners of the Bikeways Program Grants. The Maryland Bikeways Program, administered by the Maryland Department of Transportation, was established in November 2011 as a program to support planning, design and construction of projects that create and improve bicycle connections in Maryland to key destinations, like work, school and shopping.
Highlights from the meeting notes of a meeting I did not attend. So read with that discount in mind.
Bike Arlington Updates -
Bike to School Day - 18 elementary schools participated in Bike to school day and turn out was good. Some schools had overflowing bike racks. Because of the success, Bike Arlington will begin planning Bike to School Day earlier. The BAC then discussed the lack of participation of some schools on Bike to School day. BAC members proposed opening a dialogue with Principals to make them more comfortable with the concept and to find out what intersections could be causing some of the hesitance to participate.
Bike to Work Day – The Rosslyn rest stop had more registrants than any other rest stop, even the Ronald Reagan building stop - with 968 riders. This is the first time that has ever happened. Crystal City had 508 registrants while Ballston had 512 register.
Safety Education - The County is promoting better bike handling with Two Wheel Tuesdays, Confident City Cycling classes and “Wheels Wednesday” - an after-school event held at Long Branch Elementary. A Learn to Ride class was held on May 27th in Crystal City with 18 people, 14 successfully learned how to ride a bike during the class.
Staff Report The Joyce Street project that is currently underway is a Federal Highway Project. It will take about five months and will result in a wider sidewalk.
Bike Counter Data There is less of a spike in commuters on bike to work day than in the past as more people are commuting consistently [WC: Does this mean there is less room to grow, since most of the people who are interested in bike commuting are already doing it?]. For the first time, the Key Bridge counter is now counting more cyclists than the Custis Trail counter.
Signage - David Goodman reported that they are working with the wayfinding signs contractor to ensure consistency and are checking everything for accuracy. He further reported that he took the feedback from the BAC to the developers for the Bergmann's Cleaners/Custis site. He showed the adjusted bike path and the BAC agreed that his representation accurately depicted the feedback discussed at the earlier meeting with the developers. The crash on the Custis near the Marriott has prompted an investigation on the legality of the stop sign.
The BAC then participated in a discussion of the site plans for Rosslyn Plaza (Bounded by Wilson Blvd., N. Kent St., Arlington Ridge Rd., and 19th. St.) which includes a proposed connection between Arlington Ridge Rd and Kent Street with a pedestrian bridge to go over the GW Parkway to Roosevelt Island. The BAC felt that the developers proposal does not meet the needs of the bicycling and pedestrian communities and feels the the developers should work with the County toward a more practical solution. The BAC will work with County staff and the Site Plan Review Committee to identify better alternatives.
Bollards – Steve Offutt provided a brief update on the efforts to reduce useless bollards (and bollard collards) around the county. Steve spoke at a recent county board meeting about the issue as more bollards have been installed around the county. Steve also encouraged BAC members to use the Google map to identify bollards (and collars). A link to the map is accessible through the Washington Area Bike Forum.