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Old 07-17-08, 01:25 PM   #1
capolover
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Good reasons not to use MUP's.

I started using a small MUP that runs about half a mile near the end of my 12 mile route. I'll have to say it's a very bad idea and I'm not going to do it anymore.

It's an MUP or paved path parallel to the road, not connected to it.

1. Cars pull up to the road and never pay much attention to MUPs. At least when I'm on the road cars have to stop at signs/lights. No such love for MUPs as most drivers don't even consider them. A great way to get smashed by side road warriors.

2. ****. Dog ****, branches, glass.....lots of **** all over the things. At least on the road cars are constantly "cleaning" the road for you.

3. Peds with dogs. They are always in the way and have no idea you're behind them. Why get in each others way?


I just don't see any reason to use an MUP. They seem dangerous and dirty to me.
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Old 07-17-08, 01:28 PM   #2
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I just don't see any reason to use an MUP. They seem dangerous and dirty to me.

Because that MUP is exactly like every other MUP in the world.
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Old 07-17-08, 01:31 PM   #3
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For the first part of my commute, there's an MUP right next to the 4-lane divided highway that I use the shoulder of.....you would think that the MUP would be safer, right?

Wrong - The shoulder is (at least) 14 feet wide, with easier grades, and great sight lines. The MUP has awful sightlines where it crosses the roads, and one nasty/steep hill with a narrow wooden bridge at the bottom of a steep hill with a quick climb after it (that changes direction as you cross it at 20+MPH).

One foggy day, I was coming down the hill, and at the last second, saw a guy doing Tai Chi IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BRIDGE.

From that day on, I've been using the shoulder. It's much safer.
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Old 07-17-08, 01:35 PM   #4
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For the first part of my commute, there's an MUP right next to the 4-lane divided highway that I use the shoulder of.....you would think that the MUP would be safer, right?

Wrong - The shoulder is (at least) 14 feet wide, with easier grades, and great sight lines. The MUP has awful sightlines where it crosses the roads, and one nasty/steep hill with a narrow wooden bridge at the bottom of a steep hill with a quick climb after it (that changes direction as you cross it at 20+MPH).

One foggy day, I was coming down the hill, and at the last second, saw a guy doing Tai Chi IN THE MIDDLE OF THE BRIDGE.

From that day on, I've been using the shoulder. It's much safer.
Yeah... screw it.
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Old 07-17-08, 01:37 PM   #5
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Not all MUPs are created equal.
This one gets a bit busy during the weekend but during the work week it is spiffy. It does have a few dangers like most MUPs. Then again so do streets.

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Old 07-17-08, 01:39 PM   #6
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Old 07-17-08, 01:41 PM   #7
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Because that MUP is exactly like every other MUP in the world.[/QUOTE]

I live in Montreal and we have 350km of MUP on the island and most of them are very well maintained and safe.
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Old 07-17-08, 01:48 PM   #8
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I've been friends for thirty years with the traffic engineer who designed our county's MUP, a.k.a. the Road to Nowhere. Now, Royce isn't a cyclist, but he's a pretty bright guy and knows his job. I asked him why the sightlines were so poor on our path, why it starts and stops with long gaps between sections, why the stop signs aren't on the intersecting streets, and why, oh why, was there a bright red fire hydrant in the MIDDLE of the MUP... at the bottom of a steep-ish hill? I can average about 18mph if I stay on the roadway along that stretch, but struggle to keep 14mph on the MUP.

He knows me, knows how I get my kicks. He told me that the MUP wasn't designed for me. It was designed for 2 - 3mph walkers, 5mph joggers, and 8mph cyclists.

So there. I don't use the MUP 'cause I'm too fast for it. Same reason I don't rollerblade in my living room.

I do jump onto it sometimes, when the motor traffic reaches critical levels. Hey, my tax money helped pay for the thing, I can use it... or not... as I see fit. Ain't America grand?
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Old 07-17-08, 01:48 PM   #9
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if i'm trying to get somewhere... ie commute, i f'ing hate those parrallel mups/glorified sidewalks. the worst part is motorists expect you to use them.

i kinda like em when i'm out riding with the kids though.
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Old 07-17-08, 02:00 PM   #10
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Because that MUP is exactly like every other MUP in the world.

I live in Montreal and we have 350km of MUP on the island and most of them are very well maintained and safe.
Hey, comparing an MUP with a city in canada that's had a real structured program to make bike paths is different from a half of mile stretch in Raleigh NC.

sayin'

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Old 07-17-08, 02:20 PM   #11
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I prefer riding on the roads if I'm trying to get somewhere/commuting, they're a faster and typically more direct route. MUPs here in Toronto can be hit & miss with regard to insanely high amounts of random-action traffic, or completely dead... They're nice for a non-rushed cruise type ride, but if I'm wanting to hammer down or get somewhere without slowdowns/interruptions every few metres - I'll go to the street. It's sometimes too much hassle to be on the 360-degree lookout for loose kids/dogs/people just not being aware, I prefer to ride well in excess of the 12mph/20km/h speedlimit too.
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Old 07-17-08, 02:26 PM   #12
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He told me that the MUP wasn't designed for me. It was designed for 2 - 3mph walkers, 5mph joggers, and 8mph cyclists.
I think that's probably true of the large majority of MUPs: that the planners were thinking of a user base as described above. Thus, it's always a bit surprising when any MUP designed with that target group in mind is even partly suitable for commuting.
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Old 07-17-08, 03:32 PM   #13
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I've relegated my MUP usage to only when I'm riding my cruiser for a few reasons.

1. Right next to the beach, and I hate sand in my derailur/cogs, etc.
2. Popular tourist place, so millions of kids and dogs are always on it.
3. Crazy Europeans who cannot walk in a straight line, and especially not on the right side of the path.
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Old 07-17-08, 03:37 PM   #14
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Ug, don't get me started on the lake path in Chicago. I honestly think I would rather take public transportation than use that on a daily basis. I just get angrier and angrier when I ride it. People walking 3 abreast, thus blocking the entire path. Goofball bike rides riding next to each other while swerving. I'll fight the traffic and cabs rather than deal w/ that.
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Old 07-17-08, 03:43 PM   #15
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I think one thing to consider is the type of rider we're lumping all cyclists into. It's inappropriate to cycle at 25 miles per hour on some MUPs, even if you're able to. You might feel that it's your right to bike as fast as you want, because there's no legal speed limit, but you're wrong. If you're out for a casual 10 mph ride, looking at the birds and admireing the park, most MUPs are fine.

But I wholeheartedly agree that it's better to use the road if you're traveling at "commuter" speeds.
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Old 07-17-08, 03:45 PM   #16
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Ug, don't get me started on the lake path in Chicago. I honestly think I would rather take public transportation than use that on a daily basis. I just get angrier and angrier when I ride it. People walking 3 abreast, thus blocking the entire path. Goofball bike rides riding next to each other while swerving. I'll fight the traffic and cabs rather than deal w/ that.
Its not so bad at 7:00 AM. Or when its cold.

I ride the street home though.
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Old 07-17-08, 04:01 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by Pig_Chaser View Post
if i'm trying to get somewhere... ie commute, i f'ing hate those parrallel mups/glorified sidewalks. the worst part is motorists expect you to use them.

i kinda like em when i'm out riding with the kids though.
Exactly - they totally have a place - just not for me when I'm trying to get to work.
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Old 07-17-08, 04:16 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by DataJunkie View Post
Not all MUPs are created equal.
This one gets a bit busy during the weekend but during the work week it is spiffy. It does have a few dangers like most MUPs. Then again so do streets.

I'm planning on riding up this one on Saturday. I live in Parker, only a hundred feet or so from Cherry Creek, and the same path runs (mostly unbroken) all the way out to my neighborhood.

Depending on how I feel when I hit Lodo, I might make it a metric
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Old 07-17-08, 04:17 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by capolover View Post
I started using a small MUP that runs about half a mile near the end of my 12 mile route. I'll have to say it's a very bad idea and I'm not going to do it anymore.

It's an MUP or paved path parallel to the road, not connected to it.

1. Cars pull up to the road and never pay much attention to MUPs. At least when I'm on the road cars have to stop at signs/lights. No such love for MUPs as most drivers don't even consider them. A great way to get smashed by side road warriors.

2. ****. Dog ****, branches, glass.....lots of **** all over the things. At least on the road cars are constantly "cleaning" the road for you.

3. Peds with dogs. They are always in the way and have no idea you're behind them. Why get in each others way?


I just don't see any reason to use an MUP. They seem dangerous and dirty to me.
That's not a MUP, that's a wide sidewalk. The city is labeling it wrong. MUPs need to be partially or totally separated.
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Old 07-17-08, 07:05 PM   #20
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I'm planning on riding up this one on Saturday. I live in Parker, only a hundred feet or so from Cherry Creek, and the same path runs (mostly unbroken) all the way out to my neighborhood.

Depending on how I feel when I hit Lodo, I might make it a metric

I prefer to do my long rides on streets but I have ridden the Cherry Creek from start to finish a few times. It is a nice trail with few issues from start to finish. The platte on the other hand goes through some interesting areas.
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Old 07-17-08, 10:48 PM   #21
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This is a typical mup in this city used for recreation:



You'll find them almost anywhere in the city where there's a lake, stream, or river. They're well maintained with few street crossings. Peds in most areas stay on the Ped path. In some areas the paths are shared and in other places the distinction between the two isn't always apparent.

The speed limit is typically 10 mph but often ignored. They're not intended for commuting but I've used them for short stretches when I'm not in the mood to go fast or I'm going uphill.

These are intended for commuting:



Below is one of the greenway ramps getting plowed:


The last 2 images are of the 5 million dollar bridge spanning Hwy 55.



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Old 07-17-08, 11:37 PM   #22
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I agree. MUPS suck for cycling unless you enjoy going slow and easy. Since I commute for fitness/training, MUPS are the last place I want to be riding. I almost prefer gridlocked traffic to MUPS.
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Old 07-18-08, 12:07 AM   #23
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The so-called bicycle path along the Orange Line in the San Fernando Valley and continuing east along Chandler into Burbank makes me crazy, particularly east of Sepulveda. There's a separate pedestrian path along one side, but pedestrians would rather die than use it. That's not so bad, though--a typical MUP problem easily managed. What really gets me is the street intersections. There are signs just before each intersection saying "Bike Path Ends" and "Walk Bikes." The Bike Path then begins again on the other side of the street. None of the intersections have sensors to trip the light for the bike path and many of the lights will simply stay red for the bike path unless you push the inconveniently located pedestrian walk button. I have no interest in racing on the bike path, but the only purpose of this one, at least through the east SFV, seems to be to deter rather than to facilitate cross-valley bicycle traffic.
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Old 07-18-08, 04:40 AM   #24
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About a quarter of my commute is on a bike path. There's a walking path next to it. For the most part, I can go as fast as I can. There's one intersection to a street with no traffic and a few spots where I have to slow down a little but it's much faster than the street close by.

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Old 07-18-08, 06:24 AM   #25
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I live in Montreal and we have 350km of MUP on the island and most of them are very well maintained and safe.
I was just in Montreal last weekend for the first time in... a long time, and WOW, I just couldn't get over the general awesomeness of the place. Of course, we came in by car (and why doesn't the Amtrak northern route allow/accommodate bicycles on the train?) and I'm ashamed to admit I nearly turned the car into a bike lane because I didn't expect it to be there.

There seriously seemed to be more bikes than cars (okay, I was there on a weekend, not the height of rush hour, but still)

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