Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    Senior Member umpadumpy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    My Bikes
    1978 Rampar R-10 BMX, 1988 Specialized Hardrock, 1999 Mongoose Hoop D, 2001 Schwinn Predator BMX, Generic Beach Cruiser
    Posts
    206
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Seattle Forming Master Plan for Bicyclists

    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/transp...ewrecks08.html

    Letting bicycles and cars coexist: More than 900 riders have been injured and 5 killed in accidents since 2001

    By MIKE LEWIS
    P-I REPORTER
    Seattle's most dangerous intersection for bicyclists hardly looks the part: It's flat, well-lit, signal-controlled. Where leafy Northeast Blakely Street crosses four-lane 25th Avenue Northeast just north of University Village, vehicles don't travel much above 30 mph.
    Graduate student Emily Howe, 27, had no idea she was running such a gantlet on her four-mile commute from Northeast 65th Street to the University of Washington, although she acknowledges more than a few close calls. "It's the people making right turns," she said. "They don't always look for cyclists coming off the trail and crossing the road."

    Other cyclists who cross the stretch agree.

    "I haven't had one, but I've seen accidents here," said George Bertsch, 64, a physics professor who has been commuting on his bike for the past decade. "I think the city needs to do more for cyclists."
    That's what it is trying to do, said Peter Lagerway, the city's cycling czar who is leading the effort to develop the cycling master plan. Two public meetings this week and a third in August drew more than 600 people and 2,000 comments. "We heard a lot of good ideas," Lagerway said.

    Among the good ones: improvements to the Second Avenue bike lane downtown, which now is considered dangerous; better east-west bike lane connections through the Aurora corridor; additional signs or lights at problem intersections; more bike carriers on buses; and connections between the city's disparate bike trails.

    And then there are others not as likely to fly, such as a 24-hour broken glass hot line and the suggestion that most downtown streets be closed to all traffic except mass transit, delivery trucks and, of course, bicycles.

    "Obviously, every idea won't work. But we're trying to make a system that allows anyone to bike anywhere in the city," Lagerway said. "It's really a matter of taking cycling and making it available to everyone."

    The Transportation Department hopes to have a draft plan ready for public viewing at the end of the month and a proposal to the mayor's desk by February.

    The need for a plan is increasing, Lagerway said, because as congestion worsens and gas prices stay high, more people will turn to cycling. "We're just not going to build our way out of congestion. It's really becoming quicker to bike, (when) speeds are 10 mph in rush hour."

    To get there, the city is not only asking the public but also culling ideas from other biking towns. In Portland, Seattle transportation officials saw that many more designated bike lanes and bike route signs increased the number of cyclists in the city.

    From San Francisco, Seattle likely will crib "sharrows" or shared bike and car lanes. This, officials hope, will solve the steady series of collisions and near-misses in the downtown Second Avenue bike lane.
    According to Transportation department figures, that 17-block, southbound stretch ranks among the city's worst even through it is a one-way street with a designated bike lane. Cyclists complain that they get pinched between Metro buses and motorists who merge into the bike lane and opened doors from parked cars.

    Lagerway said that making the far-left lane a "sharrow" would give cyclists a full lane while still allowing motorists to merge into the lane for left turns. "People are not happy with the Second Avenue bike lane," he said. "The 'sharrow' would be one solution."

    The hope isn't limited to improving bike routes and safety. Bike advocates also think that by giving cyclists more designated routes, there will be less animosity between cyclists and motorists.
    Cart Monson, a Mercer Island systems analyst for a transportation company, commuted 30 miles a day for seven years from his home to the Seattle Center. He stopped when his work began to require meetings with clients.

    Even with all of those bike miles in his legs, Monson, 44, sympathizes, to a degree, with motorists. He said some cyclists adopt a morally superior attitude and don't make room for cars. Then there are those who simply don't have the skills to ride on public roads or who decline to obey the rules when they do.
    "It's the same thing that makes people feel they can hate SUVs. 'Look at me, I'm saving gas. I'm being green. I'm being ecological. You're still driving a car.' " Monson said. "It's that sense of entitlement.
    "If they don't have the skills, then it's not fair for them to be whining that the drivers are being rude if they're going so slowly that they're obstructing the traffic."

    Cyclists, on the other hand, say that most of the bad blood starts with cars. The smaller problem, they say, is drivers who see them and get irritated about the slow speed. The bigger: vacant, cell phone-talking motorists who don't look for cyclists.

    Bob Spencer's commute, nine miles each way from Ravenna to downtown, takes him through some of the city's high-accident stretches. He said drivers often are unaware of cyclists in their field of vision, particularly when making right turns.

    But, he added, both sides need to raise their awareness. "We need more education for both sides," said Spencer who attended one of the bike master plan meetings. "We need more bike land and more signs to raise awareness that we are out there."

    Lagerway said that ideally the master plan will reduce accidents and tension while it increases the number of riders. He said cyclists need to do their part by obeying the rules of the road. "It's the best thing they can do to win the hearts and souls of the motorists."

    "There is such a thing as a critical mass, where you eventually get enough cyclists where behavior changes. I think a big part of this is, more people riding creates a lot of this success."

    MASTER PLAN
    The Seattle Department of Transportation will post the draft plan online at the end of December. Visit seattle.gov/transportation/bikemaster.htm or simply Google "Seattle Bicycle Master Plan."

    P-I reporter Phuong Cat Le contributed to this report. P-I reporter Mike Lewis can be reached at 206-448-8140 or mikelewis@seattlepi.com.
    "Somewhere in the world, someone is quoting something you don't even remember saying."

  2. #2
    Banned Bikepacker67's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Ogopogo's shoreline
    My Bikes
    LHT, Kona Smoke
    Posts
    4,063
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Article
    Cart Monson, a Mercer Island systems analyst for a transportation company, commuted 30 miles a day for seven years from his home to the Seattle Center. He stopped when his work began to require meetings with clients.

    Even with all of those bike miles in his legs, Monson, 44, sympathizes, to a degree, with motorists. He said some cyclists adopt a morally superior attitude and don't make room for cars. Then there are those who simply don't have the skills to ride on public roads or who decline to obey the rules when they do.
    "It's the same thing that makes people feel they can hate SUVs. 'Look at me, I'm saving gas. I'm being green. I'm being ecological. You're still driving a car.' " Monson said. "It's that sense of entitlement.
    "If they don't have the skills, then it's not fair for them to be whining that the drivers are being rude if they're going so slowly that they're obstructing the traffic."
    With "advocates" like this, we don't need enemies.

  3. #3
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2003
    Location
    in bed with your mom
    My Bikes
    who cares?
    Posts
    13,696
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    ^^I agree, he's an uninformed ass, but that's just the way they sell newspapers these days - with controversy and disinformation. Notice the guy is no longer a bicycle commuter, he's just one of those motorists that prefaces his negative comments with 'I have a bike...' Too bad for the real Seattle bike commuters when this guy's comments are later reflected in bad motorist behavior on the road. The PI is doing a great disservice by not countering his comments with correct information on safe passing distances and when cyclists are legally allowed to take the lane.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Wogster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Toronto (again) Ontario, Canada
    My Bikes
    Norco Bushpilot (out of commission), Raleigh Delta
    Posts
    6,944
    Mentioned
    2 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by umpadumpy
    http://seattlepi.nwsource.com/transp...ewrecks08.html

    MASTER PLAN
    The Seattle Department of Transportation will post the draft plan online at the end of December. Visit seattle.gov/transportation/bikemaster.htm or simply Google "Seattle Bicycle Master Plan."
    Master plans can be good, the real question is, will the politicians screw it up so much, that it will be worse then if no plan had been drawn up in the first place? After all, if you want to screw up an idea, just leave it in a room, with a politician for 5 seconds, it will end up being half as good, and cost twice as much

  5. #5
    Newbie
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Posts
    1
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    Snap Judgement

    Nobody needs enemies, but at the same time, in order for improvement and learning to happen, people need to be reliably informed of shortcomings. Not a pleasant experience, granted, but essential none the less. In order to determine the friend/foe status of the commentator, you have to look at the tone and involvement of the individual commenting. I detected no snyde or superior tone in Cart Monson's observations, but I certainly did in your response.

    Cart Monson's bona-fides certainly put him in the category of an involved individual. He obviously has suficient experience to know what he's talking about as well. So, if you want to classify as an enemy, someone sharing the benefit of his experience in an effort to improve safety for all involved, then you need to re-evaluate your position.

    Although I am a firm believer in natural selection (read: idiots should not be legislativly prevented from killing themselves), I also am a firm believer that those who belong in the gene pool will be intelligent enough to seek improvement and learning, and can learn valuable lessons from nearly any source.

    Dave

  6. #6
    Banned Bikepacker67's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Ogopogo's shoreline
    My Bikes
    LHT, Kona Smoke
    Posts
    4,063
    Mentioned
    3 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Howard
    I detected no snyde or superior tone in Cart Monson's observations, but I certainly did in your response.

    Really? So describing cyclists as whining, is a term of endearment?

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •