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#26 2013-11-07 17:44:43

MichaelBluejay
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From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,168
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Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

AusTexMurf wrote:

But, since you make those decisions for yourself, only, meek...by bike, not motorized couch...Ride your bike, lots....It's still much more fun, mike.

You're not being fair.  First, m1ek has arthritis and can't bike any more.  Second, some people choose not to bike because it's inherently dangerous.  Third, m1ek isn't disqualified from critiquing bike facilities just because he doesn't bike any more himself.  Finally, m1ek put in his dues for years on the Urban Transportation Commission.  That's more than most of us have done, myself included.

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#27 2013-11-07 17:51:56

dougmc
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Registered: 2008-06-01
Posts: 549

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Jack wrote:

"(Or, put another way, what ratio of dislike to like would I have to find for the facility to be the failure you told us it would be?)"

It fails when one pedestrian is struck by a cyclist or when one cyclist is struck at an intersection in a way we've foreseen

So, what you're saying is that every single transportation facility ever made is either already a failure or will be one eventually?  If all it takes is a single collision that could have been forseen to make it a failure ... that sets the bar for failure very, very low.

I predict that when the toll lanes on Mopac go in, that they're likely to lead to somebody rear ending somebody else.  So when this actually happens ... I get to declare the toll lanes a failure, based only one that one collision?  Genius!

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#28 2013-11-07 18:51:49

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Well, if that's a low bar for failure . . . what is your measure for success?  But we aren't talking about all facilities; we are talking about changing what was in place in favor of what they are installing/have installed.  Just because an accident occurs at a place where a stop sign is installed doesn't mean it was a bad idea to put it up, but if more accidents occur there after it goes up, maybe the stop sign could be called a failure.

To put it another way, this project fails when the balance of the risks from the old configuration to the new configuration shifts such that they are greater for the target users of the new configuration than they were for the old configuration.  I presume the idea behind the project is making cycling Guad safer*, and if that's the idea, the project's a failure.  If the idea is something other than making cycling Guad safer*, what is the idea and is the idea worth pursuing?

First principle:  do no harm.  The person struck will have a legitimate complaint if being struck is a result of a pedestrian/cyclist conflict less likely in the old configuration or a cyclist/motorist conflict less likely than in the old configuration.  For some, it seems, what is worse is viewed somehow as something better.

*and facilitating boarding buses safely

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#29 2013-11-07 22:26:38

dougmc
Administrator
Registered: 2008-06-01
Posts: 549

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Jack wrote:

Well, if that's a low bar for failure . . . what is your measure for success?

That was my question, the one that you replied to.

Just because an accident occurs at a place where a stop sign is installed doesn't mean it was a bad idea to put it up, but if more accidents occur there after it goes up, maybe the stop sign could be called a failure.

Well, pedestrian/cyclist collisions happened with the old setup too, so what you're saying is that maybe just one isn't enough to make it a failure after all?

Also, I don't think looking at just one sort of collision and ignoring all other factors is appropriate.  The old setup gave cyclists the choice of being very close to car traffic, being in the door zone, and just taking the traffic lane.  The new setup gives them the choice between being close to the sidewalk, in the door zone, or just take the lane -- though at least if you hit a door on the passenger side you don't get thrown out into traffic, so there is that.  Presumably it trades auto/bike collisions for pedestrian/bike collisions to some degree, though it's possible that it increases auto/bike collisions at intersections, and it is certainly true that pedestrians walked in the bike lane before as well.  Either way, it seems way too early to have accurate statistics on collision rates and types to compare to whatever existed beforehand.

I presume the idea behind the project is making cycling Guad safer*, and if that's the idea, the project's a failure.

First, I suspect that safety was only one of several of their goals.   But there's no reason to guess at their reasons -- they posted them right here --

The project's design team found that by moving the transit platform and on-street parking away from the curb, the drainage issues were resolved, and at the same time, the opportunity was created for physically protected bicycle facilities in the southbound direction. Additionally, this plan allows for the northbound bicycle lane to be widened and buffered.

... it seems that they attained all their goals, so the project must be a complete success!  That page doesn't even include the word "safety" in it anywhere!  (Now, of course we're assuming that "safety" is one of the goals of the protected bike lanes, but I'm not finding an explicit listing of what they hope to accomplish by adding them.)

In any event, my question was for Mike.  He has declared the project a failure, and has pointed to dissent on the SocialCycling page as evidence of this failure.  I hadn't quantified the dissent, and don't think he had either, but he seemed sure that there was enough to support the idea that it was a failure, so I was wondering what level of dissent was required.

I tried to work out the comments and classify them -- so far I've found about 50/50 for explicitly saying they liked it vs. disliked the southbound part and 100% for liking the northbound part, but there's some big comment threads that I'm not finding that I know used to be there.

First principle:  do no harm.

Isn't 1) that for doctors, and 2) way, way over simplified even for what doctors do?  Doctors do harm all the time, and I'm not talking about malpractice or even mistakes.

I'm not here to say the facility is great -- really, all I did was agree that taking the lane was an option.  But I also think it's too soon to call it a failure, and in fact the most likely result of this is going to be a wash -- it's doesn't really seem that much better or worse than the old setup southbound, and northbound it's a definite improvement.  And I imagine it drains better too.

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#30 2013-11-08 09:30:47

AusTexMurf
Member
From: South Austin
Registered: 2008-11-21
Posts: 439

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

MichaelBluejay wrote:
AusTexMurf wrote:

But, since you make those decisions for yourself, only, meek...by bike, not motorized couch...Ride your bike, lots....It's still much more fun, mike.

You're not being fair.  First, m1ek has arthritis and can't bike any more.  Second, some people choose not to bike because it's inherently dangerous.  Third, m1ek isn't disqualified from critiquing bike facilities just because he doesn't bike any more himself.  Finally, m1ek put in his dues for years on the Urban Transportation Commission.  That's more than most of us have done, myself included.

Agreed. I acknowledged Mike's role early in the red alert on the drag thread.
And also, look what has been stirred up.....probably a good thing, because he did criticize the cycle track on the drag.
Thanks again, m1ek.
A cycling facility is certainly not above criticism.
Jack's criticism of the Barton Springs cycle track is also valid.
The hard nosed old school cyclist in me screams, 'Get Off The Sidewalk !!!"
I just stay out in the lane.
However,
The more sympathetic father side of me loves the fact that 5-10 year olds, older folks, and newbies can ride their bikes within their comfort zones to get to Butler Park, concerts, Lady Bird Lake, Hike and Bike Trail, etc.
So I accept the compromise.
Same thing with the drag.
I like the experiment and the possibility for change.
And the fact that Guadalupe isn't finished yet. It will continue to change.
Hopefully, it will improve...

And not aware of the arthritis issue, its causes, severity, or treatment.
Inflammation has many possible underlying causes.
Diet and lack of exercise are also likely culprits.
Some people say the best treatment is continued use.
Recumbent ?
But, hardly think that the automobile is the answer to a human health problem....

Also, if bicycling in traffic on Guadalupe seems too dangerous for some people,
Use the cycle track. Slow down, watch for pedestrians. Stop and buy a cup of coffee. Support your local businesses, etc...
Or ride on Rio Grande, Nueces, or Shoal Creek MUP.

Moreover,
I don't think a motorist posting, repeatedly on Bicycle Austin,
that cyclists don't belong in the lane of traffic,
Is fair either....
Nor do I agree.
Just saying....

Last edited by AusTexMurf (2013-11-08 09:55:24)

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#31 2013-11-08 09:40:18

AusTexMurf
Member
From: South Austin
Registered: 2008-11-21
Posts: 439

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Also,
got to thinking....
Portland swapped 163 on-street car parking spaces for 1,644 bike spots!
http://www.treehugger.com/bikes/portlan … video.html
Milestone: 100 bike parking corrals and they can't keep up with demand
The city of Portland, Oregon, has reached the impressive milestone of 100 bike corrals. That's 9 years after the first one was installed, and the city expects to reach 150 within 5 years and has 98 additional applications under review. As far as I know, that's a lot more than any other city in the US, though I hope that others will give Portland some competition.
All cities need these
Why are bike corrals so great? Because in a dense urban environment, the are very space-efficient; where 1 or 2 cars could park, dozens of bikes might fit...

What if the city removed on street parking on Guadalupe ?
It would give us more room to play with, to improve the facilities on the drag and in other locations around town.

Last edited by AusTexMurf (2013-11-08 09:50:35)

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#32 2013-11-08 09:47:01

AusTexMurf
Member
From: South Austin
Registered: 2008-11-21
Posts: 439

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Perhaps experiment with something like this glowing, anti-slip coating....
To alert peds and illuminate the path for cyclists ?
GlowingBikePath

http://bicycleaustin.info/forum/viewtopic.php?id=1542

Last edited by AusTexMurf (2013-11-08 09:48:06)

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#33 2013-11-08 14:18:53

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

dougmc wrote:

Well, pedestrian/cyclist collisions happened with the old setup too, so what you're saying is that maybe just one isn't enough to make it a failure after all?

Also, I don't think looking at just one sort of collision and ignoring all other factors is appropriate.  The old setup gave cyclists the choice of being very close to car traffic, being in the door zone, and just taking the traffic lane.  The new setup gives them the choice between being close to the sidewalk, in the door zone, or just take the lane -- though at least if you hit a door on the passenger side you don't get thrown out into traffic, so there is that.  Presumably it trades auto/bike collisions for pedestrian/bike collisions to some degree, though it's possible that it increases auto/bike collisions at intersections, and it is certainly true that pedestrians walked in the bike lane before as well.  Either way, it seems way too early to have accurate statistics on collision rates and types to compare to whatever existed beforehand.

This experiment has been run and this kind of facility increases the risks to cyclists and pedestrians.  We are in the position now of "wait and see" on statistics only because it's too late to stop it.  It's not as though Guadalupe is so unique that we can't compare it to what has been done in similar circumstances years ago.  Now, if the problem of the door zone/close traffic is to be solved, another approach can be taken.  Next time, we need to have opposition to such plans and better alternatives at the ready.  Keep in mind that "first, do no harm" implies--rightly so--that doing nothing is a better alternative in some cases.

I presume the idea behind the project is making cycling Guad safer*, and if that's the idea, the project's a failure.

First, I suspect that safety was only one of several of their goals.   But there's no reason to guess at their reasons -- they posted them right here --

... it seems that they attained all their goals, so the project must be a complete success!  That page doesn't even include the word "safety" in it anywhere!  (Now, of course we're assuming that "safety" is one of the goals of the protected bike lanes, but I'm not finding an explicit listing of what they hope to accomplish by adding them.)

  And so we are back to "if safety wasn't the goal, was it one worth pursuing?"  Surely drainage could've been improved without channeling riders into a narrow space with pedestrians.  The tracks are called "protected" which implies safety is the goal.  Perhaps the city knows full well that the project makes things more dangerous and they are trading that for some other benefit, or why wouldn't they claim safety as a benefit?  That makes the word "protected" misleading, doesn't it?  All the protected lanes can protect against is a collision from the rear--so it the project balance is one of reducing the risk of one of the least likely collisions in the real world at the expense of increasing the risk of more common types.

In any event, my question was for Mike.  He has declared the project a failure, and has pointed to dissent on the SocialCycling page as evidence of this failure.  I hadn't quantified the dissent, and don't think he had either, but he seemed sure that there was enough to support the idea that it was a failure, so I was wondering what level of dissent was required.

And I would offer that the very most popular bicycle facility is a failure if it doesn't make the situation better than it was before it terms of safety and convenience.  I would not go so far as to say that safety and convenience always go hand-in-hand, but, again, 'do no harm' should be a primary principle.  It isn't a popularity contest, it's traffic engineering.  Dissent/support should be evaluated on the basis of the reasoned arguments presented on the costs and benefits of the design. 


First principle:  do no harm.

Isn't 1) that for doctors, and 2) way, way over simplified even for what doctors do?  Doctors do harm all the time, and I'm not talking about malpractice or even mistakes.

  It is for you and me and traffic engineers too, brother.  Why would it not be?

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#34 2013-11-08 15:08:49

dougmc
Administrator
Registered: 2008-06-01
Posts: 549

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Jack wrote:

We are in the position now of "wait and see" on statistics only because it's too late to stop it.

That much is true -- the project certainly surprised the BAC when the construction started.  But then they ultimately endorsed it (after picking it to pieces), so presumably they would have endorsed it had it been run by them first as well.  And if they weren't going to stop it (well, try -- they have no real power), who was?  The cycling community seems divided by it, but the majority of the clear dissent I found was simply people saying "I'll just take the lane".

It's not as though Guadalupe is so unique that we can't compare it to what has been done in similar circumstances years ago.

The problem with this reasoning is ... many think that this sort of thing has been a success.  If you're selective about your statistics, you'll find a glowing success.  Or a miserable failure.  Or something in between.  And if you're not selective at all ... you'll find a mess that doesn't tell you anything.

All the protected lanes can protect against is a collision from the rear

Now, this statement is ... wrong.

-- They protect considerably against the most serious dooring incidents.  You can still be doored, but at least you won't then be thrown into traffic to be run over by a truck.
-- They protect against being hit from the side by a car who has leaked out of their lane.  (And yes, I do realize that you might want to lump this in with being run over from behind, which would be fine.)
-- They protect against from being cut off by motorists going into or leaving a parking spot.
-- They protect against you running into the back of a bus parked into the bike lane, or a double parked car in the bike lane (the former being extremely common on the drag, the latter rare but not unheard of.)
-- They protect against cyclists wandering out of the lane on accident into traffic for whatever reason.  This is sort of how Morgan Marold died a bit over a week ago.  From what I heard from riders that were with her, she got a flat tire (in the bike lane, though maybe it was just a shoulder), stopped, couldn't get out of her clipless pedals -- and fell over into traffic, where a car hit her.  That wouldn't have happened on a protected cycle track.

(yes, some of these collision types would be the cyclist's fault, but even so -- a protected cycle track still prevents or reduces them.)

Now, on the drag with it's heavy pedestrian traffic, these dangers are replaced with a higher risk of cyclist/pedestrian collision, but such collisions tend to be less serious than cyclist/car collisions.  And I do suspect that it leads to a higher risk of cyclist/car collision at the intersections (left and right hooks), where the motorists didn't realize that there were bikes there.

But, overall, is it safer?  (Not that safety is a simple thing, easily distilled into a single number that we can call "safety".)  I don't know, but certainly it's far from obvious either way -- there's a number of competing factors.

First principle:  do no harm.

Isn't 1) that for doctors, and 2) way, way over simplified even for what doctors do?  Doctors do harm all the time, and I'm not talking about malpractice or even mistakes.

  It is for you and me and traffic engineers too, brother.  Why would it not be?

It's too simple -- it sounds good, but it's not enough for a moral system, not by itself.  What if some small harm done to today has a potential (yet not certain) greatly beneficial benefit tomorrow?  Every doctor prescribing chemotherapy deals with that possibility, as does every parent who spanks or otherwise disciplines their child.

As does a traffic engineer when he suggests something that will (hopefully) make things better in the future but will clearly make things worse in the short term as it's constructed.

And as far as this faculty goes, the harm has yet to be confirmed -- it's pretty much just theoretical and not everybody agrees.  Sure, we can see some clearly bad things about this change, but we can also see some clearly good things.   The city seems to think the overall good outweighs the bad (they seem to be on a "If we build like the Dutch did, they will come" kick, which seems naive, but I certainly don't know that it won't work), so now we get to wait and see.

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#35 2013-11-08 18:35:07

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

something that will (hopefully) make things better in the future but will clearly make things worse in the short term

Well, maybe a couple of kids getting right-hooked on the green paint will cure cancer.  If you think the studies on these things leave things terribly muddied, you and I have a different understanding of the body of the literature.    http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/e … _risks.jpg   For every rare type of accident you named, it's easy to imagine the corresponding increased crash risk on the cycle path in addition to the manufactured conflicts with pedestrians and crossing/turning autos.  The well-designed studies don't lead one to think it's a wash.  The chemotherapist has a long discussion with a patient on upsides and downsides of the therapy.  The traffic engineer doesn't have that opportunity with her patients.  The thing the novice cyclist is most lacking is not a safe place to ride, it's the knowledge of what to look out for and how to avoid those things.  Here we have a facility that makes looking out for and avoiding many of those things more, not less, difficult.

Why the green paint? I asked in a different context.  Well, it started to be recognized that the increased hazards needed something to increase the alert.  It's a partial mitigation of the problem the facility creates, and there's good reason to believe that, even as they have some effect on alerting auto drivers,  (based on observed cyclist/driver behavior on the colored lanes) they make cyclists more comfortable with not looking out.  Instead of mitigating the manufactured problem, why create the problem to begin with?  It's like administering chemotherapy not to cure the cancer but to make the patient's family think 'at least they are doing SOMEthing.'  If the idea is that this is worse in the short term for a greater future benefit, I'd sure like the argument spelled out:  The worse part in the short run is THIS and the long term benefit will be THAT--and the reason we will see the greater benefit is THIS OTHER THING.

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#36 2013-11-12 15:32:10

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

http://bicycleaustin.info/forum/viewtop … 4848#p4848  Speaking of cycle tracks and reducing doorings . . . .

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#37 2013-11-25 13:47:39

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

http://john-s-allen.com/blog/?p=5722  Speaking of failed cycle tracks.  $$$

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#38 2013-12-20 17:27:55

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

On the topic of how well-established it is that cycle tracks such as are being put along Austin's streets are worse for cyclists of all skill levels, see the collection of studies here:  http://www.cyclecraft.co.uk/digest/research.html 
Of particular interest seeing as how we are copying the "modern" approaches found in Europe with the goal of making cycling more appealing to the "8-to-80" crowd, see:

Safety of cycling children – Effect of the street environment
Leden. Technical Research Centre of Finland, 55 (ISBN 951-38-3436-0). 1989.

Field survey of 14,000 schoolchildren between ages of 6 and 16 in five Swedish, one Norwegian and three Finnish towns. Children described road crashes in which they had been involved over the past year.
For children cycling, risk of colliding with motor vehicle 2.7 times higher at intersections with a cycle track (which the child used) than at road-only intersections. Risk highest when cycle crossings 8 to 15m from intersections and when traffic signals were present.
Overall risk of collision is 0.5 crashes/100,000km on the carriageway but 1.3 crashes/100,000km on a cycle track, rising to 2.8 when there are concurrent green signals for road and cycle track at junctions.

Amenagements cyclables en Belgique
Review in Roue Libre, 1991.

Review of new Belgian Government policy on cycling.
Cycle tracks no longer favoured in urban areas due to problems and danger.
Preferable to remove narrow paths and where in bad state.
Two-way cycle tracks to be declassified as particularly dangerous.
Cycle safety
Hass-Klau et alia. Environmental & Transport Planning, UK/Germany 1991.

Anglo-German comparison; many German references.
Number of motor vehicles and in particular number of cyclists has much stronger influence on safety than cycle facilities. Some main roads with cycle facilities have higher cycle accident rate than without. 36% of accidents in German study towns take place when the cyclist is using a facility. More serious accidents a result of cross-manoeuvres or with no other vehicle at all. Visibility and care crucial; cycle facility may contribute to accidents by making cyclist over-confident. Facilities cause many problems; bad cycle facilities are worse than none.
Peterborough: high accident rate in residential areas casts doubt on independent cycle facilities. York and Oxford: high serious accident rates.
Preferred policy of cyclists is better junction design and safety education.
Sicherheit rund ums Radfahren
ARGUS, Austria, 1992.

Report of Velo Secur cycle safety conference in Salzburg.
Translation of conference summary

Trying to keep cyclists apart from motor traffic in urban areas has proved too much for road users to cope with and led to unnecessary accidents. Urban cycle paths are unsuitable and should not be used.
Providing cycle paths rarely solves safety problems and often introduces new ones. Austrian and Swedish research shows cyclists at 3 times greater risk on cycleways than on road.
Bremen police chief agreed and called for compulsory use of paths to be lifted.

Cycle routes
Harland, Gercans. TRL, UK, 1993.

Analysis of experimental routes in Exeter, Bedford, Nottingham and Stockton.
No evidence that cycle routes lead to more cycling or improved safety. No change in Stats 19 (reported) casualties, although some cyclists transferred to paths.

Comment: It is probable that there was an overall increase in accidents due to the transfer of some cyclists to paths where the rate of reporting is much lower. Other evidence from Bedford gives weight to this.

Safety for cyclists at urban road junctions
Schnull, Alrutz et al. German Federal Highways Institute Report 262, 1993.

Proportion of junction accidents significantly higher with cycle tracks. HGV conflicts more common with segregation. Without signals, cyclists nearly 5 times more at risk on a cycle track; contrasting surfaces only reduces this to 1.5. With signals cyclists 1.7 to 2.7 times more at risk on cycle track, 1.3 times on a cycle lane. At roundabouts cycle tracks increase risk by 30%, cycle lanes by 25%.

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#39 2013-12-30 17:37:52

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Jack wrote:
AusTexMurf wrote:

Original plan had been Nueces ?
Went over like a fart in a parked car, if I remember correctly.
Mostly DT attorneys, protesting, I believe.
Rio Grande cycle track was the eventual compromise.

A bad compromise.  Narrow two-way tracks should be avoided generally and on RG it would be easy to avoid.  The better plan (and European!  In use! Successful!) is to have one-way auto traffic with the cyclists operating as normal vehicles northbound in a sharable-width lane and a bicycle only southbound lane striped on the opposite side of the street.  Easy to set up.  And easy for everyone to understand which direction what user is likely to be going, fewer turning conflicts, no need for the pylons.  Slow the speed limit to 18 mph and it would be an even more attractive route.

"The better plan"--a German study to that effect can be found http://www.bikexprt.com/research/contra … ichtet.htm

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#40 2013-12-30 18:10:54

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Remember how Austin spent three quarters of a million dollars on the Barton Springs Blvd. cycle track? 

I was reminded of that cost by this piece of a good essay: 

The City of Chicago just committed to building a single mile of cycle track.  The project will cost $3 million.  Multiply that by Chicago’s 17,000 miles of highways and arterials and the bill will be $51 billion.  And that’s just Chicago.  If Chicago spent $100 million per year on cycle tracks it would take 510 years to “make all their streets safe for bicyclists.”  Simple math shows even bringing the cost down to $300,000 per mile means 51 years to complete the system.  Under that extremely rosy scenario, ten years from now 80 percent of Chicago’s streets will still lack “safe accommodation.”  So untrained cyclists who must use those streets will be out of luck for quite some time.

What’s more, at least a third of cyclist/motorist crashes happen on low-speed neighborhood streets which won’t get such bikeways.  Training, on the other hand, helps a cyclist everywhere.  With effective training a cyclist can use those quiet local streets when desired and possible, and use the arterials where necessary.

The beauty of training is that the more people you train, the more trainers you can enlist, and more normative the new behaviors appear.  So it’s a positive feedback system that gains power and momentum.  A trained cyclist can travel anywhere, immediately, instead of being limited to bicycle-specific infrastructure.

A typical six-lane arterial like the one getting a cycle track in Chicago carries about 60,000 car trips per day.  No doubt the segregation advocates would be thrilled if the cycle track stimulated cycling to a 20 percent mode share; 12,000 bike trips per day.  If it’s a round trip that means it serves 6,000 cyclists.  So 6,000 cyclists get to “safely” use one mile of arterial each day.

How about we try this.  Pay 200 Chicagoans $50 per hour to teach 25 ten-hour traffic cycling courses per year. That comes to $2,500,000 ($12,500 for each instructor ).  Each instructor can teach five students per class, which is 25,000 students.  Since people don’t believe cycling training has value, let’s pay them to take the course; say $50 each.  That comes to $1,250,000.  Total cost: $3,750,000.

Which sounds like a better deal?  $3 million to give 6,000 cyclists access to one mile of arterial, or $3.75 million to give 25,000 cyclists access to 17,000 miles of arterial?

[for Austin--how about $750,000 worth of that kind of action?]
- See more at: http://commuteorlando.com/wordpress/201 … q856t.dpuf

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#41 2017-06-06 12:12:19

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

rich00 wrote:

. . .  options now are 25mph or whatever the speed of traffic is in the travel lane on the drag.
Or, 15mph and ready to stop on the cycletrack.

Old, old, thread, but a new observation.  Cycling at 25 mph in the regular travel lane is not so advisable any more because of the poor condition of the pavement--apparently the buses are killing the street.  And for the 15 mph cycle track rider, there is some news too.

Today I noted a new feature.  (new to me--I don't know how long it's been there, but it looks to be not very old)
Now the pavement markings include "10 MPH" painted right there in slippery white paint on top of the slippery green paint. 

Actually, 10 mph is faster than one should dare ride it most of the time (as rich00 said, always be "ready to stop").  The former striping was fine for one riding that gentle downhill slope from 6 to 25+ mph.  Now, the city seems to have acknowledged that normal bike riding speeds are too daredevilish for safe operation on the facility. 

Since one of the barriers to getting people to ride bikes rather than drive cars for basic transportation is the extra time it can take to make needed trips, unnecessarily slowing biking down is a far cry from efficient "encouragement."

In terms of safety, a "cycle track" is very much like sidewalk riding--riding off the street, out of view, in a hard to observe position where it's harder to observe the traffic that threatens, etc., etc.   [This thread is so old that "cycle track" was still considered by some a good and useful term, but now it has been supplanted by the wholly misleading term "protected bike lane" to name exactly the same thing.]

I've ridden the Guadalupe cycle track a number of times since its installation, but not too frequently.  Unless my destination is on the west side of that street, I'll go a block or more out of my way to avoid it.  It's that bad.  I consider some sidewalks safer for riders.

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#42 2017-06-06 14:19:54

MichaelBluejay
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From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,168
Website

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

I'm interested to hear what others think about Jack's take on the Guadalupe cycle track / "protected" bike lane.

As for this:

dougmc wrote:
m1ek wrote:

Riding in the lane on Guadalupe is no longer a feasible option for anybody other than daredevils - because motorists are going to (rightfully, in their minds) be pissed you're not in the cycletrack.

Who cares if they're pissed?  What are they going to do about it?  Run you over?  Throw their beer at you?

Yep, that's happened to me.  Not because I wasn't in a cycle track, but just an impatient driver and his passenger in west campus.

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#43 2017-06-06 15:04:28

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 260

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

I'm opposed to people tossing stuff at cyclists, if that's what you mean (never a beer, but once a plastic dinosaur toy, and not out of any impatience--I was on the shoulder of SW Pkwy).

I wouldn't ride the right lane southbound on Guad. today b/c of pavement issues.  When the pavement was better, I rode it a few times when traffic was light enough that motorists could easily move to the other lane to pass me.  It was way better than the green cycle track in terms of fewer opportunities for conflict. At busier times, that lane was rideable, but uncomfortable.  Parallel routes are preferable when Guad traffic is heavy.

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#44 2017-06-06 16:03:01

MichaelBluejay
Webmaster
From: Austin, TX
Registered: 2008-05-26
Posts: 1,168
Website

Re: Changing Lanes: Austin’s Cycle Tracks

Sorry, I meant, "What do you all think of Jack's take on the Guadalupe cycle track / "protected" bike lane?"  I edited the post to make it clearer.

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