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  1. #1
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    SF Streetsblog on Door Zone Bike Lanes

    This sounds about right to me:

    So what is the solution? First off, bicycle design standards need to be changed to require cross hatch markings that extend 4 feet from a parked car so that even novice cyclists realize this a “no riding” area. If there is insufficient width on the street for a buffer and a bike lane, then a parking or travel lane needs to be removed. If providing for the safety and dignity of all road users is politically infeasible, then the bike lane itself needs to be removed and replaced with sharrows indicating that cyclists should take the travel lane.

    It is no longer acceptable to lure people onto bicycles with a network of bicycle lanes that look inviting, but in reality can cause injury or death when used as directed. Our bicycle infrastructure design and our bicycle safety curricula should complement, not contradict, one other.
    http://sf.streetsblog.org/2010/11/08...urting-people/

  2. #2
    genec genec's Avatar
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    While I agree wholeheartedly with the comment... we need to realize that the reason such BL are designed in the first place is that the law says drivers must check to ensure a way is clear before opening a door into traffic.

    Have you ever heard of someone being ticketed for opening a door into traffic?

    This is yet another situation in which lax enforcement has lead to problems. So far motorists have carte blanche... speeding, running stop signs, running red lights, talking/texting on cell phones, right turn on red without stopping... the list just goes on and on... all found to be acceptable in one form or another by LEOs and judges.

  3. #3
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    Have you ever heard of someone being ticketed for opening a door into traffic?
    Even if this was routinely done (if that is even possible) I wouldn't ride in a door zone.

  4. #4
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    Even if this was routinely done (if that is even possible) I wouldn't ride in a door zone.
    Nor I, but then we aren't novice cyclists.

    But the fact is that bike lanes are designed with the laws in mind... that we don't have folks (motorists and cyclists) following said laws is the problem. This also is the ironic joke behind Forester's constant rant about road rules... if in fact the rules were adhered to, vehicular cycling and bike lanes would all work quite well... but the fact is that too many folks don't know the rules, and work hard at bending rules anyway.

  5. #5
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    Even if this was routinely done (if that is even possible) I wouldn't ride in a door zone.
    Oh regarding the "possibility..." well just issue a ticket any time a cyclist hits a door.

    I doubt that is even done... just as rarely are "traffic" tickets handed out when a motorist violates a cyclist in a collision... all too often "an investigation" is indicated that never results in any punishment for the offender (be they cyclist or motorist).

  6. #6
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    It would appear to me that the design of most existing bike lanes pays more attention to getting cyclists as FRAP as possible, than to the safety risks they are exposed to when such designs are implemented.

  7. #7
    Randomhead
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    Quote Originally Posted by genec View Post
    But the fact is that bike lanes are designed with the laws in mind... that we don't have folks (motorists and cyclists) following said laws is the problem.
    I can't really disagree with your thesis, but there is very little else in road design that assumes people will follow the law. For example, roadside obstacles are commonly removed even though drivers are legally required to travel on the roadway, not down the ditch. Similarly, the county here just ruined a lot of good cycling routes by putting rumble strips everywhere. The idea that people will be able to adequately check for oncoming traffic in their mirrors is a much more radical assumption than is generally used in road design. They just don't want to get rid of parking. Parking is sacrosanct in most municipalities.

    Quote Originally Posted by randya View Post
    It would appear to me that the design of most existing bike lanes pays more attention to getting cyclists as FRAP as possible, than to the safety risks they are exposed to when such designs are implemented.
    I agree, although in State College there have been a number of parking spaces taken out so it's not uniformly bad. My impression is that it's not necessarily done with bad intentions.

  8. #8
    meandering nomad
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    Right on Randya! To get bicyclists out of the way or to remove my right of way in relation to motorized traffic.

    I say that someone getting ticketed isn't going to save me from injury in the first place.
    I will add that traffic laws were enacted in the belief that policemen actually work.
    Safety Nanny Checklist
    1.Two headlights major brand 100+ Lumens plus helmet light2.Two tail-lights at minimum but really you need more3.Mirrors on helmet, handlebar and back of glove.4. Reflective vest and tape on every surface5.Disc and caliper brakes just in case6.Horn, bell and train whistle7.Chicken Little’s Phone# 8.Wear a helmet at all times (you might fall out of bed)Because it's scary out there!

  9. #9
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unterhausen View Post
    I can't really disagree with your thesis, but there is very little else in road design that assumes people will follow the law. For example, roadside obstacles are commonly removed even though drivers are legally required to travel on the roadway, not down the ditch. Similarly, the county here just ruined a lot of good cycling routes by putting rumble strips everywhere. The idea that people will be able to adequately check for oncoming traffic in their mirrors is a much more radical assumption than is generally used in road design. They just don't want to get rid of parking. Parking is sacrosanct in most municipalities.


    I agree, although in State College there have been a number of parking spaces taken out so it's not uniformly bad. My impression is that it's not necessarily done with bad intentions.
    Every darn stop light and stop sign is in place on the assumption that motorists will obey them! That they fail to do so and still manage to only kill 40,000 or so annually is the real surprise.

    I know this seems "illogical" at first glance, but the reality is that if motorists and cyclists actually held to the laws, everything would work just fine... Of course the ugly reality is that this isn't the case, and everyone tries to bend the rules.

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    Randomhead
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    I think you have made an interesting point. However, I think it's probably more logical than the actual thought process that goes on when drawing out bike lanes in door zones. If you watch motor vehicle operator behavior near parked cars, they tend to give them a significant buffer. The issue I see is that it's relatively difficult for a person exiting a parallel parked car to properly monitor traffic in the door zone with 100% certainty. I don't think we should expect to be able to use it for vehicular travel.

  11. #11
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    It also seems to me that the same principles should apply to bike lane designs which place through cyclists to the right of right turning traffic

  12. #12
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    The door zone is unwanted space for driving. No one motors in it so no motorist feels a loss if it marked for bicycles - it is preferred it that way by faster drivers as it keeps cyclists out of the way.

  13. #13
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam View Post
    The door zone is unwanted space for driving. No one motors in it so no motorist feels a loss if it marked for bicycles - it is preferred it that way by faster drivers as it keeps cyclists out of the way.
    so is the gutter, hence FRAP

  14. #14
    Je pose, donc je suis.
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    Quote Originally Posted by randya View Post
    It would appear to me that the design of most existing bike lanes pays more attention to getting cyclists as FRAP as possible, than to the safety risks they are exposed to when such designs are implemented.
    Around here (central VA), it appears to be more to show ('claim' is probably more accurate) that someone, somewhere, is thinking about cyclists. Hence, all the crappy 'bike lanes to nowhere'.

    Anyone in C'ville who has ridden West Main can attest to that.

  15. #15
    Senior Member degnaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by randya View Post
    so is the gutter, hence FRAP
    Is this better? (Hennepin Ave in Minneapolis, prior to the conversion to bus/bike lanes)

    I think the conclusion is that it's much more convenient and faster for cyclists, but the number of accidents skyrocketed.


  16. #16
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by degnaw View Post
    Is this better? (Hennepin Ave in Minneapolis, prior to the conversion to bus/bike lanes)

    I think the conclusion is that it's much more convenient and faster for cyclists, but the number of accidents skyrocketed.

    that's kind of a weird setup, what's the lane on the left of the cyclist (to the cyclist's right)?

  17. #17
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    I don't believe the fearmongering about the purportedly kryptonic bikelanes of death.

    Quote Originally Posted by league of american bicyclists president letter to instructors
    There is no evidence to suggest properly
    designed bike lanes are more dangerous for cyclists, and there is plenty of
    evidence to suggest that, in fact, bicycle lanes:
     encourage bicycle use
     improve cyclist and motorist lane discipline and predictability, and
     encourage safer riding behavior (by discouraging wrong way and sidewalk
    riding).
    Two primary concerns are raised in relation to bike lanes: dooring and
    intersection crashes. Maintenance issues are operational issues that can be
    addressed in a different forum. Neither dooring nor intersection issues are unique
    to roadways with bike lanes......
    Bike lanes can be striped adjacent to parking lanes and parked cars.
    There are striping, signing and marking techniques that encourage and
    enable cyclists to ride further away from parked cars. Bicyclists are
    successfully and safely operating on urban streets even with AASHTO-
    minimum recommended widths for parking, bike, and adjacent travel
    lanes. This may not always be appropriate for every such street:
    engineering judgment may suggest other options such as establishing
    lower overall speeds and the use of shared lane arrows.

    as a political high ground for a bicycle activist, pledging to demand better bikeways is a good goal, but demanding double buffered bikelanes or sharrows is going to leave some traffic coorridors with low cyclist level of service, lower and likely less safe than if AASHTO compliant bikelanes were to be placed as per the current design minimums.

    Why shouldn't traffic operating significantly slower than other traffic keep FRAP? And, some posting here hold highly unrealistic expectations that faster traffic will never be passing alongside a bicyclist as the near or pass an intersection.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  18. #18
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    ^^^ so basically you are arguing for door zone and right hook bike lanes as an acceptable design standard.





    IMO, that's pretty close to the end of your credibility here.


  19. #19
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    as a political high ground for a bicycle activist, pledging to demand better bikeways is a good goal, but demanding double buffered bikelanes or sharrows is going to leave some traffic coorridors with low cyclist level of service, lower and likely less safe than if AASHTO compliant bikelanes were to be placed as per the current design minimums.

    Why shouldn't traffic operating significantly slower than other traffic keep FRAP? And, some posting here hold highly unrealistic expectations that faster traffic will never be passing alongside a bicyclist as the near or pass an intersection.
    the AASHTO standard is the problem here, along with the FRAP laws and mandatory path/lane laws

  20. #20
    Senior Member degnaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by randya View Post
    that's kind of a weird setup, what's the lane on the left of the cyclist (to the cyclist's right)?
    Contraflow bus lane, I believe:

  21. #21
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by randya View Post
    ^^^ so basically you are arguing for door zone and right hook bike lanes as an acceptable design standard.


    IMO, that's pretty close to the end of your credibility here.
    get a grip on yourself. the door zone exists on streets without bikelanes and there are ways to improve bikeways to mitigate the dreaded, kryptonic 'door zone' you're so worried about. I agree removing street parking alongside bikelanes is a way to mitigate the fearmongering hysterics over the 'door zone of death' randya is fretting over.

    Fearmongers aside, I know, and so does the president of the League of American Bicyclists, that "There is no evidence to suggest properly designed bike lanes are more dangerous for cyclists, and there is plenty of evidence to suggest that, in fact, bicycle lanes: encourage bicycle use, improve cyclist and motorist lane discipline and predictability, and encourage safer riding behavior (by discouraging wrong way and sidewalk riding). "


    I think road users need to respect others right of way
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  22. #22
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Ah heck the LAB drinks it's own kool-aide.

    Put down enough paint and the LAB gives you a medal... regardless of how well it's done.

  23. #23
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    genec, can you point to any study that shows 'door zone' bikelanes are worth the hysterics?

    As far as I can read the conclusions of the researchers, streets with bikelanes are safer than streets without. Anecdotes about cyclists in door zones don't count.

    from wikipedia ......

    Quote Originally Posted by wiki
    The authors of a 2009 meta-study on cycle infrastructure safety research at the University of British Columbia similarly conclude that "in comparison to cycling on bicycle-specific infrastructure (paths, lanes, routes), on-road cycling appears to be less safe."[8] In direct contrast to the claims of vehicular cycling proponents, Jennifer Dill and Theresa Carr's research on bicycle transportation in 35 U.S. cities also suggests that "higher levels of bicycle infrastructure are positively and significantly correlated with higher rates of bicycle commuting."[9]
    Despite the hysterics and the fearmongering about the dreaded kryptonic door zone of death, bikelanes to AASHTO minimum are effective on several criteria.

    The door zone lives and breeds on crowded city streets that have no bikelanes. In my experience in several cities, operating a bicycle in an AASHTO minimum bikelane in the crowded downtown core of a large american city is usually an express route in (relative) safety past the congestion and the traffic. Take a similarly congested street in the same city that has no bikelane, and the cyclist is weaving and darting in and out of stopped traffic past doorzones of parked and idling cars, squeezing thru the narrow spaces riding a street that presents a gratingly low level of service for the vast majority of american cyclists.

    Specious expectations that cyclist traffic can be correctly destination positioned at every point a car may turn to the curb or turn right is wildly unrealistic when it comes to a discussion of how to plan for roadway bicycling. Speed differential is real.

    Cyclists, of course, still need to keep their wits about them. bikelanes do not absolve bicyclists from paying attention while operating in traffic.

    Bicyclist activism to increase the door buffer for bikelane standards established by the MUTCD is valid. Fearmongering about current facilities coupled to absolutes - give bicyclists bufferzones or make them share the lane - simply isn't realistic.
    Last edited by Bekologist; 11-16-10 at 08:26 AM.
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

  24. #24
    genec genec's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bekologist View Post
    genec, can you point to any study that shows 'door zone' bikelanes are worth the hysterics?

    As far as I can read the conclusions of the researchers, streets with bikelanes are safer than streets without.

    from wikipedia ......



    Despite the hysterics and the fearmongering about the dreaded kryptonic door zone of death, bikelanes to AASHTO minimum are effective on several criteria.

    Sure, bicyclist activism to increase the door buffer for bikelane standards established by the MUTCD is valid. Fearmongering about current facilities coupled to absolutes - give bicyclists bufferzones or make them share the lane - simply isn't realistic.
    Heck of a study Bek... their whole conclusion is that bike lanes "appear" to be safer.

    OK, my study is that door zone bikelanes appear to be less safe. Ta da... my study!

  25. #25
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    really
    "Evidence, anecdote and methodology all support planning for roadway bike traffic."

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