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#1 2014-06-05 16:11:48

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 322

2014 Protected Bike Lane Study including Austin facilities.

I haven't had a chance to do more than skim it, but a before/after study has been done on a number of protected bike lanes, some of them in Austin.  Mostly, it seems to be analysis of "perceived safety" and usage rates, and thin on actual safety for the Austin facilities (video analysis of conflicts for users was done on facilities for the study but apparently not for the Austin ones).  FYI if interested:




http://ppms.otrec.us/media/project_file … eportb.pdf

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#2 2014-06-05 19:36:15

bizikletari
Member
Registered: 2009-03-18
Posts: 223

Re: 2014 Protected Bike Lane Study including Austin facilities.

Jack wrote:

Mostly, it seems to be analysis of "perceived safety" (...), and thin on actual safety

"Perceived Safety" carries a lot more weight than what it seems you imply it has. Perception of safety is one of the main arguments Americans invoke to shy away from bicycling. It is the main cause why Americans do not allow their children to bike to school or other activities. It is one of the most cited reasons why women bike less than men in America.

Also, in a deeper meaning is the same reasoning why America invaded Irak, albeit wrong as that perception of safety was.

I think it may be useful to rethink the profound impact that perception of safety has in everybody's lives and use that understanding to build facilities that promote cycling.

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#3 2014-06-06 10:55:09

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 322

Re: 2014 Protected Bike Lane Study including Austin facilities.

Of course there is nothing wrong with designing facilities that people feel confident are safer, unless the those facilities in fact make people using them less safe.

My quick take of the study, subject to my reading it more thoroughly later, is that the most valuable part was the video analysis of conflicts on the facilities treated outside of Austin.  A survey made of whether people prefer the "protection" doesn't seem to me to tell us much more than other such surveys in the abstract, without reference to particular PBLs.  That is, if one thinks that protection by physical barrier is necessary or helpful to safety before looking at a facility, one is likely to still think so after looking at the facility.  MUTCD standards, however, warn against physical barriers for same-direction traffic because of studies measuring the increased danger from turning and cross traffic.

While I alone can't represent a significant sample of Barton Springs Rd. use, in my own before-and-after riding, mornings and evenings, I have experienced and observed more conflicts between bicycles and motorists during those periods when the pylon separators were present than when they were not.  I would prefer that the facility remain as it is now (no pylons) than the way it was designed for that reason.  Bicyclists and drivers seem to operate better together that way.  It would be cheaper besides.

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#4 2014-07-29 16:33:20

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 322

Re: 2014 Protected Bike Lane Study including Austin facilities.

A preliminary review of the study is posted here:  http://john-s-allen.com/blog/?p=6294  It is worth reading.  The "most valuable" part, the video analysis, turns out not to amount to very much at all.

Last edited by Jack (2014-07-29 16:35:08)

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#5 2015-01-14 16:19:05

Jack
Member
Registered: 2013-03-27
Posts: 322

Re: 2014 Protected Bike Lane Study including Austin facilities.

bizikletari wrote:
Jack wrote:

Mostly, it seems to be analysis of "perceived safety" (...), and thin on actual safety

"Perceived Safety" carries a lot more weight than what it seems you imply it has. Perception of safety is one of the main arguments Americans invoke to shy away from bicycling. It is the main cause why Americans do not allow their children to bike to school or other activities. ***
I think it may be useful to rethink the profound impact that perception of safety has in everybody's lives and use that understanding to build facilities that promote cycling.

A new study on cycling risks, according to this http://usa.streetsblog.org/2015/01/09/s … -you-wear/  "Researchers found that people who were injured while riding on sidewalks or shared-use paths tended to sustain worse injuries, even compared to cyclists riding on major roads with no bike infrastructure. These counterintuitive results suggest that riding in places with potential conflicts between cyclists and pedestrians can be more dangerous than people assume. An earlier study by the same research team found people riding on sidewalks and multi-use paths were also more likely overall to be involved in a collision or crash."

I find that riding the Barton Springs Blvd. west-bound shared path not only has lots of conflicts with pedestrians, but also with wrong-way riders and cars turning across the path.  More so than a cyclist gets staying in the street.  It also sometimes is covered with wet leaves or mud.

I didn't read more than the article (linked above) but a report is located here  http://bmjopen.bmj.com/content/5/1/e006654.full.pdf

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