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Great work. I hope the signs go up on Springfield Road. I wonder if a non-bike only signage option would help too. Like: "Please yield to slow-moving vehicles" with a picture of a tractor and/or a bike. Or just a big diamond with a tractor and a bike on it. Just to remind speeding drivers.

After a year of full-time bike commuting from PG county to DC, I'm starting to notice a tiny bit more driver awareness and even some courtesy on the roads. My observations are not a scientific study of course, but I think some drivers are gradually getting more aware that bikes may be on the road, at least in some places. Of course, the big arterials, like Kenilworth Ave or Greenbelt Road are still complete speedway disasters. But on smaller roads I don't feel like I'm such a surprise to drivers this year as last. Lots more commuters on bikes out in the county to the point where on a few roads at least, it's starting to seem a little more normal, not like I'm some sort of alien riding around the area on my bike.

How does one contact DPW&T? I was planning to write them about the Rhode Island Ave bike lanes, but I never found contact information.

Related question, who to contact about a posssible traffic light problem in PG county: the county, the state, the local town? I think it's either in the town of Brentwood or Mt. Rainer.

The light at Allison Road/Arundel Street at 34th street seemed to switch to flashing red/yellow yesterday. Drivers on 34th with the flashing yellow sometimes stopped, sometimes didn't. Seemed very confusing compared with the regular traffic light operation before.

Here (hopefully) is a pointer to the intersection: http://maps.google.com/maps?q=washington+dc&hl=en&ll=38.948049,-76.962187&spn=0.000955,0.002194&gl=us&t=h&z=19

Slight correction, Jim. Laurel has used R4-11 since 2009. Not sure that we would, though, on roads with speed limits greater than 30mph. Regardless, we received no complaints about them that i'm aware of.

@Ron Alford: Vic Weissberg is DPW&T's main contact for bike-ped issues. He is not involved in all of the projects but WABA has been asked to go through him or the director Haithum Hijadi, rather than nag the traffic engineers. I thought Haithum's phone number etc. is on their website. We can discuss this more by email.

@Greenbelt. Off hand, I do not know whether those towns maintain roads or not, or if so, if they maintain these roads. So I would start with DPW&T as well. I don't think they have the website complaint form that SHA has, so I'd just call. Since I don't know whom to call, I would call Vic (you could ask him about Springfield Rd. on the same call.) If it is not a county road, they ought to be able to tell you that.

We should probably discuss Springfield Rd details by email.

@Bryon. Interesting concern about 30 mph speed limits. Can you elaborate more about your concern there? Following the contours of the dialogue with DPW&T and SHA: Is your concern about the sign that on faster roads you want the cyclist to be riding all the way to the right? Or that you simply want to be silent about lane position. (If the former, the follow-on question is about the assumed traffic flow around cyclist on a road too narrow to share side-by-side. If the latter, does the yellow warning sign mitigate the concerns.)

Related to Laurel's possible speed limit of 30 mph for R4-11 signs: The MUTCD has a 35 moph limit for sharrows, but not R4-11. I looked into the 35 mph limit to find the basis for such a limit. The ocmmittee members all told me that they had no reason for the limit. It was a simple political compromise between people who did and did not want sharrows at all. But one is free to depart from that guidance if one has a reason (e.g. low volume).

@bryon -- have you met with Greenbelt department of public works staff or other city officials down here recently? If not, they might be very interested in learning about all the good stuff you're doing up in Laurel. I'll buy the donuts if you have time for a meeting to brief Greenbelt folks on what you're doing.

@Greenbelt -
You had me at "donuts." Shoot me an e-mail ([email protected]) and we'll set something up.

How does this SHA policy square with practice where local police may blame cyclists for not riding in the shoulder?


The requirement to ride in the shoulder was repealed in 2010, so it's hard to know what local police are thinking if they tell you to ride in the shoulder.

Most R4-11 signs will go on roads with no shouldes, or with narrow shoulders that will not fit a bike. But perpaps occasionally an R4-11 sign will be placed on a road with a 10' lane and at 3' shoulder--in that case it would hopefully prevent the enforcement policy you mention.

But the better way to stop illegal enforcement activities is to make sure that police know the law. The SHA police training video--still in draft but basically done I hear--will probably help more.

So does MacArthur Boulevard get one of these signs? It seems to fit the criteria. I can hardly wait...

Which segment?

Is that a road where you are prepared to push?

If you are wondering what would happen if you do nothing, perhaps someone from MoBike can indicate where that road would be on the priority list.

As a general matter, people have not really prepared a strategy on how this thing will be rolled out. Some of the first roads to get the signs will be where officials are already working on an upgrade and this sign is better than the alternatives. Some will probably be where the community asks for the signs. Roads like Jones Bridge that connect two park roads and have alot of cyclists might also be a priority.

Bryon hasn't yet weighted in on my previous question about 30 mph, but many road agencies do get queasy after 35 mph, at least on high volume roads.

Especially if MD adopts the white regulatory sign, it would probably be best to start with roads that are either multi-lane, <40 mph, or low-volume (and with no sidepath in the same direction as the sign). We do not want 600 anti-R4-11 emails sent to the County Executive.

Just sent you an e-mail with my thoughts on the subject of sharrows on 35mph+ roads.

Haven't heard from you yet. I'm not inclined to invite myself to give a presentation to other localities - it would seem awfully presumptuous. and vain.

@Bryon and @Greenbelt: I owe both of you emails but may be a bit slow due to vacation. I think that the Gazette may have an article on R4-11 this week, based on reporting done 2 weeks ago by the Glenn Dale reporter. I referred her to you Bryon, did she ever call?

No, I haven't talked to the gazette in a few weeks. Enjoy your vacation, e-mails can wait - life is short.

@Bryon -- I'm just getting to the letter writing this weekend. Sorry for delay. And congrats on the great article on the Gazette!

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