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I believe the sign says that the bike lane must turn right, not bicyclists.


@Mark: It's just like "Right lane must turn right." Bicycles are not prohibited beyond that point, so you can still merge to the left of the right turn lane (45mph speed limit).

This is very interesting. Not sure whether you have the time, but it would be really helpful to annotate each paragraph with (DPW&T) or (SHA) so that it is clear to whom people should direct their suggestions.
My guess would be
1. DPW&T
2. SHA
3. At first I would guess DPW&T but typically SHA has some involvement when a state highway is crossed.

I also urge you to make two separate "complaints" on the SHA web site for (2) and (3). And explicitly ask in the complaint about the role of SHA when a county road crosses a state highway in the case of 3.

DPW&T has less money to fix anything. That "bike lane" near REI is substandard anyway to my eye? If you get a chance, what is its width and the lane width (south of the right turn lane which is of course wider). Until DPW&T gets a bike-ped coordinator the best option may well be to send specific complaints to Council with copy to DPW&T, asking specifically why it was designed this way against all standards--and mention the county's liability for the substandard bike lanes. DPW&T claims to be really concerned about liability.

I'm unclear whether you are also interested in the separate question of what SHA does with shoulders at intersections. I think that the difficulty of getting bike lanes right has led SHA to reverse the previous polkicy of striping bike lanes about 4-5 years ago, and I am not sure whether that policy will change. But they are interested in figuring out some general approaches for shoulder-based intersections and there will be a meeting in July on that subject that you might attend if that issue is one of your issues. (I've seen more commentaries from you on bike lanes than shoulders so I am not sure of your interest in shoulders.)

PS: If not too late, I also suggest adding a Prince Georges County tag to this article.

All the more reason that CP needs to take ownership of their roads from the County.

@JimT: The bike lane is 40" from inside the paint to the gutter pan, and 57" from inside the paint to the curb.

Thanks for making me weigh down my bike this morning. I think it went from 45 pounds to 45.5 pounds with the tape measure.

@Bryon -- can municipalities do that? Greenbelt has a large and well-regarded (I think) public works department. We could handle road maintenance and improvements if we were given a fair share of the state and county funding, probably. Drivers are always complaining about the roads that are maintained by "somebody else", such as the on-off ramps to the BW parkway and beltway. Likewise, it's easy to tell where the city plowing (excellent) ends and the state or county responsibility (mediocre at best) begins when it snows. If we took over all the the roadway maintenance in our city from the state and county, we would probably have a lot more flexibility to improve bike and pedestrian infrastructure along the way.

Hi Greenbelt,
You DO have a well-regarded DPW, and so does CP. So does Laurel (for whom I'm the Engineer). I've no idea of the history, but the incorporated city of Laurel owns about 99% of its roads and will eventually own 100%. Funding to improve and maintain roadways comes from a city's general fund (i.e. taxes), grants, and roadway-user-funds doled out by the State. Hopefully these will be restored soon, as they are sorely missed (but that is another topic). Bigger cities in PG like Greenbelt, CP, Bowie, and Laurel are better positioned to take over ownership/maintenance of their own roads than, say, Brentwood, for example. I obviously know nothing of other cities' finances, so i don't know if they can afford to or not. I can understand why the County may be hesitant to relinquish some roads (roads cross multiple jurisdictions, so you need some regional cohesion in your road design). Regarding SHA, they will never relinquish ownership to a City. Which is unfortunate, because State roads that run through our town have high numbers of crashes and have the least cohesion with surrounding land uses. That's a tough nut to crack.
Owning our own roads allows quick response to citizen complaints and quick contruction of new and altered roadway infrastructure that might otherwise take years to implement. It's why we went from having nothing bike-related to having a full-fledged bike master plan, sharrows, bike lanes (with appropriate lanes shifts) in about a year and a half. With far more pending on the near-term horizon...
I'd suggest talking to your councilman or mayor - they may have already done a c/b analysis in the past.

College Park Patch has picked up this post:

Assuming they work double time starting tomorrow, when will the roads in CP and PG county be bike friendly, and the built environment beautiful?

Answer: 2100 AD, if that...

that area is a shit hole, is ugly, and is soul crushing to anyone well- educated. theyvegotten exactly what the deserve!!!!

@michael: Thank you for the encouraging words.

@Bryon -- I hope you're communicating all your great ideas and progess to your colleagues in CP and Greenbelt!

Is there an email address for PG's DPW&T?

I already got a preliminary response from SHA about the turn lane from MD 193 to Metzerott (recently revised standards, haven't retrofitted everything yet).

@michael -- I get the impression that the highway engineers consider northern PG county as an employment area, rather than a residential area. Certainly all their focus on adding more lanes and ramps has been to allow high speed commuters to get in and out, with zero regard to those us who live here, let alone those who live and work here.

Even recent road "improvements" such as Paint Branch parkway from Route 1 to 201, were put in as high-speed multi-lane roads, with minimal regard for pedestrians and zero regard for biking. Complete streets? Not!

Even the traffic signals are timed to help long-distance commuters get on and off the highways and beltway. While local residents just trying to cross the road to get to work or to metro are made to wait in deference to the out-of-towners.

Roads in northern PG are designed mostly to facilitate the high-speed, long-distance commuting needs Howard county residents in my opinion.

Well, I enjoyed that article and certainly got my dander up a bit. Generally speaking if it's not in AASHTO nor in NACTO bikeway designs guides I think the planner should be ... well something.

Also note cyclists are required by law to obey regulatory signs (black on white.) I can see why they may want a bike route from here to the trail but to REQUIRE cyclists to use a circuitous route? That's going too far.


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