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View Poll Results: Do you want John Forester Advocating for you?

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  • Yes, I agree fully with his ideas/goals

    13 13.13%
  • Yes, I have differences with his ideas/goals but think the positives outway the negatives

    33 33.33%
  • No, I have differences with his ideas/goals but think the negatives outway the positives

    33 33.33%
  • No, Completely disagree with his ideas/goals

    20 20.20%
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  1. #151
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    I am getting a little lost here. I will attempt to keep my comments on individual topics brief; but hopefully they will maintain their meaning and clarity. I think part of the confusion is due to the following:

    • I see cycling inferiority used in the context of an irrational fear of getting struck from behind ... irrational since their is a greater likelihood of getting struck in other situations.
    • I also see cycling inferiority used in the context of a right to be on the road with autos.


    From John's article, I understand the underlying link between the two and why the phrase is used in both contexts. In a practical sense, however, I think that it is a mistake to combine the two ideas. In large, I feel this way for two reasons:

    • The underlying link is somewhat abstract and not universal among cyclists ... the typical participants in the discussion.
    • One can address its symptoms without getting into a conversation about cycling inferiority phobias, complexes, etc., and the overhead that comes with it.


    That written, at least when it comes to severe accidents, I agree that intersections of sorts are where the real danger lies for cyclists. Although I wonder whether accident statistics are confounded with ...
    • selection problems where the most skilled riders are willing to ride the most dangerous areas and so forth.
    • measurement problems with reporting.
    • selection problems regarding where bicycle facilities are located; for instance, bike lanes being placed in the most dangerous areas.

    At least in my mind, there is still a lot of uncertainty regarding the magnitude of effects and the nuances that can become relevant in particular situations. But I gather that traffic theory and basic statistics support the notion that intersections are where the most difficult decisions are made and where people are exposed to the greatest risk. If it is the case that safety is the primary motivation for facilities and the world is static, then I can see why there are strong feelings and skepticism against naive bike lanes.

    I believe that bike lanes make navigating with autos easier for cyclists since the negotiation for space is already delineated for normal situations. Given that there are a lot of motorists with little experience or respect for cyclists, the bike lane asserts the right to the cyclists' presence on the road. Consequently, I get the sense that motorists behave accordingly. I also get the sense that over time, if the facilities are used, motorists update their expectations and begin to look for cyclists in their prescribed locations. I think expecting motorists and cyclists to act in a particular way--remember that anyone can ride a bicycle (no license required) and just about any joker can get a motor vehicle license--with little or no guidance is unrealistic.

    In other words, I think that there are rational reasons for people to want bike lanes that address practical issues directly and omit a fear from being hit from behind. I should point out that John and others here have pointed out valid problems with some bike lanes which should be addressed on a case-by-case basis since the cost/benefit anaylsis is likely to change with local conditions. More generally, I like to see sharrows with WOLs since they incorporate a lot of the negotiation advantages described above without trapping cyclists into a tiny spot on a road.

    Well ... I am running out of time; but have too much to write.

    I think the "what is your qualifications?" argument is just a red herring. If you believe the argument is without merit, then just state your reasons. If you are a "qualified person of the field", then just write so and state that John is mis-using the term as it is commonly used in the field. In my opinion, that approach will be more convincing to a layperson such as myself. Furthermore, I think that we are over valuing a degree or "official" experience. For instance, I certainly hope that I don't have to be a traffic engineer (and have a degree in it) to make comments about cycling safety.

  2. #152
    Sumanitu taka owaci LittleBigMan's Avatar
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    For me, "cyclist inferiority" is at the very heart and core of the problem of inferior cycling facilities. It's one thing to say that some facilities are good, and some are bad, just live with it. But it's been obvious to me for a long time that the same excellence used to design and build roads around here is not being used to build bike facilities. That is a basic problem at the very conceptual level.

    Recently, there was a bunch of kids who were killed in Atlanta when the out-of-town bus driver mistook the exit ramp for an HOV lane. He couldn't stop before plummeting over a bridge onto the freeway below. It seems the exit ramp was painted with the same diamond markings used on HOV lanes. An investigation showed that many similar crashes had occurred in the same place. The basic design of that ramp was bad, and it got a lot of media attention.
    No worries

  3. #153
    Dominatrikes sbhikes's Avatar
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    I think it is disingenous to diagnose people with a mental disorder in order to make a point. I think that the point should be made without resorting to ridicule, and if it cannot be made without it, then go back to teh drawing board.

    I am not now a "qualified person of the field" but I used to be in the field and during that employment learned enough to know better than to make diagnoses of people without the training.

    Anyway, anti-cycling/anti-facility advocates feel some reason to resort to labeling their opponents with mental illnesses and other things.

    Meanwhile, the rest of us simply use these facilities when they do indeed facilitate and get on with our lives when they don't. We also work with our local governments so that the facilities get better over time. This is a lot more positive way of going about advocacy than ridicule and phony science and for this reason I would not choose people who use those tactics to advocate for me.
    ~Diane
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    8.5 mile commute. I like bike lanes.

  4. #154
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester
    I posted the following: "I object to the bikeway program because it is based on assumptions that are contrary to accepted engineering knowledge. It matters little if some products are beneficial; any program that operates contrary to accepted engineering knowledge ought to be opposed."

    To which chipcom replied:


    Ah, chipcom, improvement in knowledge requires more than just time. It requires a real increase in knowledge. For your statement to make any sense, you must provide the new information that has produced this increase in knowledge on which your statement is posited.

    It is my position that there has been practically no increase in knowledge in bicycle transportation engineering since the bikeway designs were formalized, and whatever new information has been discovered has not improved the credibility of bikeways but has had the opposite effect.

    What is your new information, chipcom?
    It's not new, John, you just don't want to see it because it isn't pure engineering:

    FACT: People use bikeways - indeed there are now more bikeways and more people using them
    FACT: Cycling fatalities have decreased (slightly) over the last 30 years

    So, the reality is that the danger of bikeways is not borne out by any facts, only by the theories you hold on to so steadfastly. Hurst had it right....bikeways are a reality not worth everyone getting so worked up over.
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  5. #155
    Banned. galen_52657's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chipcom
    Hurst had it right....bikeways are a reality not worth everyone getting so worked up over.
    Until you are legally required to use them....

  6. #156
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    Quote Originally Posted by invisiblehand
    I am getting a little lost here. I will attempt to keep my comments on individual topics brief; but hopefully they will maintain their meaning and clarity. I think part of the confusion is due to the following:

    • I see cycling inferiority used in the context of an irrational fear of getting struck from behind ... irrational since their is a greater likelihood of getting struck in other situations.
    • I also see cycling inferiority used in the context of a right to be on the road with autos.


    From John's article, I understand the underlying link between the two and why the phrase is used in both contexts. In a practical sense, however, I think that it is a mistake to combine the two ideas. In large, I feel this way for two reasons:

    • The underlying link is somewhat abstract and not universal among cyclists ... the typical participants in the discussion.
    • One can address its symptoms without getting into a conversation about cycling inferiority phobias, complexes, etc., and the overhead that comes with it.


    That written, at least when it comes to severe accidents, I agree that intersections of sorts are where the real danger lies for cyclists. Although I wonder whether accident statistics are confounded with ...
    • selection problems where the most skilled riders are willing to ride the most dangerous areas and so forth.
    • measurement problems with reporting.
    • selection problems regarding where bicycle facilities are located; for instance, bike lanes being placed in the most dangerous areas.

    At least in my mind, there is still a lot of uncertainty regarding the magnitude of effects and the nuances that can become relevant in particular situations. But I gather that traffic theory and basic statistics support the notion that intersections are where the most difficult decisions are made and where people are exposed to the greatest risk. If it is the case that safety is the primary motivation for facilities and the world is static, then I can see why there are strong feelings and skepticism against naive bike lanes.

    I believe that bike lanes make navigating with autos easier for cyclists since the negotiation for space is already delineated for normal situations. Given that there are a lot of motorists with little experience or respect for cyclists, the bike lane asserts the right to the cyclists' presence on the road. Consequently, I get the sense that motorists behave accordingly. I also get the sense that over time, if the facilities are used, motorists update their expectations and begin to look for cyclists in their prescribed locations. I think expecting motorists and cyclists to act in a particular way--remember that anyone can ride a bicycle (no license required) and just about any joker can get a motor vehicle license--with little or no guidance is unrealistic.

    In other words, I think that there are rational reasons for people to want bike lanes that address practical issues directly and omit a fear from being hit from behind. I should point out that John and others here have pointed out valid problems with some bike lanes which should be addressed on a case-by-case basis since the cost/benefit anaylsis is likely to change with local conditions. More generally, I like to see sharrows with WOLs since they incorporate a lot of the negotiation advantages described above without trapping cyclists into a tiny spot on a road.

    Well ... I am running out of time; but have too much to write.

    I think the "what is your qualifications?" argument is just a red herring. If you believe the argument is without merit, then just state your reasons. If you are a "qualified person of the field", then just write so and state that John is mis-using the term as it is commonly used in the field. In my opinion, that approach will be more convincing to a layperson such as myself. Furthermore, I think that we are over valuing a degree or "official" experience. For instance, I certainly hope that I don't have to be a traffic engineer (and have a degree in it) to make comments about cycling safety.
    Invisible hand addresses several issues.

    The first is selectivity in measuring car-bike collision rates, due to failure to account for presence of bike lanes, reporting defects, placement of bike lanes, cyclist skill, etc. Most of these effects don't count, simply because the relevant statistics were collected before the bikeways era, and were done by a scientific analysis of all reported car-bike collisions in the area and time of the study. While it might be nice to have equally as robust statistics from later, nobody has tried to collect such. The one study done as a confirmation, by NC Highway Safety, did only enough to confirm that the original statistics still applied to modern conditions. There is one area of selectivity, thought. That is in the area of cyclist skill. It is reasonable to assume that cyclists who have acquired skill tend to increase the proportion of their riding that is in what are considered to be dangerous areas and at dangerous times. There is some evidence for this in the increased proportion of bicycle commuting among the more skilled, an activity that typically occurs in areas and times of greatest traffic.

    Another is ease of operation. Invisible hand says that the presence of a bike lane makes negotiating for road space easier for the cyclist in normal situations. That is incorrect. The cyclist never has to negotiate with motorists for the space in which he rides in a straight-ahead manner. He's there first, he has the right-of-way, the motorist coming up behind has no right to dispute that. The cyclist just rolls along. The motorist, assumed to be faster, has the duty of overtaking safely. That duty is made easier by sufficient width of the outside lane, so that he can overtake without having to negotiate with other motorists, but the matter of width is entirely separate from the presence of a bike-lane stripe.

    A third is the expectation, mostly by motorists, that the bike-lane stripe indicates the appropriate locations for the two parties. That expectation is the problem. Without a bike-lane stripe, the faster driver expects to overtake the slower driver by moving to the left, but the bike-lane stripe indicates that the bicyclist must be right and the motorist right, regardless of speed. Similarly, without a bike-lane stripe, the right-turning driver expects to move right before turning, and the left-turning driver expects to move left before turning, both of which movements are contrary to the expectation that invisiblehand has described. In other words, things work better, with less thought and less confusion, simply by having all drivers obey the rules of the road.

    It is not only that the bike-lane stripe confuses drivers about the rules of the road, but that bike-lane advocacy gets involved, as we have seen here, in denigrating the rules of the road, which is bad for all drivers.

  7. #157
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by galen_52657
    Until you are legally required to use them....
    and as stated a hundred times before...when someone trys to pass such a law I'll be fighting them. Nobody around here is contemplating requiring me to use them...nothing at the Federal level that I know of either...they trying to require it in your area Galen?
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  8. #158
    Banned. Helmet Head's Avatar
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    Invisiblehand, you make some interesting points. Allow me to get to the core.

    Quote Originally Posted by invisiblehand
    I believe that bike lanes make navigating with autos easier for cyclists since the negotiation for space is already delineated for normal situations.
    Please be specific in terms of what situations you believe "bike lanes make navigating with autos easier for cyclists", and how they makes it easier.

    For example, where the cyclist is up ahead riding in the margin of a WOL and the faster same direction motorist is behind, the cyclist only has to proceed. He has no obligation to negotiate at all. So how does adding a bike lane stripe demarcating the margin as a "bike lane" make anything easier for the cyclist?

    Given that there are a lot of motorists with little experience or respect for cyclists, the bike lane asserts the right to the cyclists' presence on the road.
    Can you be more specific? In particular, does the bike lane assert the equal right of cyclists to the road, or the unequal/inferior right of cyclists to the out of the way of motorists margin of the road?

    Consequently, I get the sense that motorists behave accordingly.
    Can you expand on what you mean by "motorists behave accordingly"? What is it that they do that gives you this sense?

    I also get the sense that over time, if the facilities are used, motorists update their expectations and begin to look for cyclists in their prescribed locations.
    What is it that gives you the sense that facilities use causes motorists to update their expectations and begin to look for cyclists in their prescribed locations?

    I once had the same sense, but I never really paid attention much to this question. When I did expand my consciousness regarding this issue, I developed the opposite sense - that facilities use causes motorists to ignore cyclists. What give me that sense is that I started observing motorist behavior much closer and noticed how motorist behavior rarely changed in reaction to lateral changes on my part while riding in a bike lane, up to and including the stripe, while the vast majority is very sensitive to such changes while riding in the undemarcated margin of a WOL. I also seem more likely to be overlooked and hooked when riding in a bike lane than when riding in the undemarcated margin of a WOL, not to mention that WOLs make it easier to leave the margin for appropriate destination positioning at intersection approaches. Finally, I've read and heard of far more than enough "unseen" cyclists killed while riding in bike lanes to believe that bike lanes someone make cyclists more conspicuous. While the evidence is limited, everything I've seen leads me to the opposite conclusion: bike lanes make cyclists less relevant to motorists and therefore less cognitively conspicuous to motorists.

    I think expecting motorists and cyclists to act in a particular way--remember that anyone can ride a bicycle (no license required) and just about any joker can get a motor vehicle license--with little or no guidance is unrealistic.
    What is the "particular way" in which you think expecting motorists and cyclists to act is unrealistic without the kind of "guidance" you apparently feel that bike lanes provide?

    All I can tell you is that with rare exceptions, as long as I act according to the vehicular rules of the roads, including using motorcycle lane positioning rules at intersections, and slow moving vehicle rules between intersections when faster same direction traffic is present or approaching, motorists act just as they want them to act: they are courteous and respectful of my equal right to be there.

    In other words, I think that there are rational reasons for people to want bike lanes that address practical issues directly and omit a fear from being hit from behind. I should point out that John and others here have pointed out valid problems with some bike lanes which should be addressed on a case-by-case basis since the cost/benefit anaylsis is likely to change with local conditions. More generally, I like to see sharrows with WOLs since they incorporate a lot of the negotiation advantages described above without trapping cyclists into a tiny spot on a road.
    I understand what you think you said, but, frankly, I don't see it. Perhaps if you could expand on your core points per my questions above, that will help. Thanks.
    Last edited by Helmet Head; 04-09-07 at 03:18 PM.

  9. #159
    Part-time epistemologist invisiblehand's Avatar
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    I see the posts. But I am heading off to a Buddy Guy concert. Take care.

    -G

  10. #160
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    Quote Originally Posted by Helmet Head
    I also seem more likely to be overlooked and hooked when riding in the undemarcated margin of a WOL than when riding in a bike lane...
    I believe you mean the reverse but just wanted to check.

  11. #161
    Banned. Helmet Head's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobertHurst
    CB HI, I am sorry those things happened to you. Those 'arguments' should have been laughed out of court. Were they?

    A bicyclist in court should be prepared for desperate lawyers to exploit anti-cycling sentiment and grasp at any straws they can think of to grasp. This would be true if bike lanes had never been conceived.

    I am prepared to believe that you live in the place with the worst bike lane problems on earth, but in general bike lanes in the US range from mildly annoying to mildly helpful. They are inconsequential. Bike lanes usually aren't a major source of anyone's cycling-related problems. This makes me wonder why so much energy is expended on the issue; my guess is that the major forces on either side tend to live and ride in places that are at the far ends of the bike-lane spectrum. On one side you've got folks from places where bike lanes really seem to work, on the other side you've got folks like yourself from places with what sound like consistently terrible bike lanes. Sometimes it seems, to this observor, that niether side is entirely willing to accept that their local conditions may not apply in other cities and other regions of the country.

    In the meantime there are no perfect streets, no perfect bike lanes. America is not a cyclist's utopia. Reality rears its ugly head again.

    R.
    With the relatively minor exception of the objection based on the potential legal ramifications of riding outside of a bike lane where bike lane use is legally required, there is no disagreement on the issue of whether bike lanes are consequential in an immediate practical respect to the experienced cyclist: everyone agrees on them being inconsequential in that particular respect.

    The areas of disagreement about bike lanes, including "well-designed" bike lanes, lie in these areas:
    • Do bike lanes make cycling in traffic significantly safer?
    • Do bike lanes make cycling significantly more popular?
    • Is the bikeway program based on assumptions that are consistent with, or contradictory to, accepted engineering knowledge?
    • How do bike lanes affect the prevalence of the notion that cyclists have an equal right to the road (as opposed to an unequal/inferior right to the margin of the road)?
    • etc.

  12. #162
    Banned. Helmet Head's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by invisiblehand
    I see the posts. But I am heading off to a Buddy Guy concert. Take care.

    -G
    Have a good time and take your time responding. I, for one, prefer well thought-out responses to hasty replies.

  13. #163
    Senior Member rando's Avatar
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    The Head is back!
    welcome back, Head!

    I kinda missed you.
    "Think of bicycles as rideable art that can just about save the world". ~Grant Petersen

    Cyclists fare best when they recognize that there are times when acting vehicularly is not the best practice, and are flexible enough to do what is necessary as the situation warrants.--Me

  14. #164
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    Quote Originally Posted by John Forester
    Hurst is telling us that the assumption (one can't call it a theory) behind bike lanes, and embodied in the design standards, is so faulty that nobody can tell whether the product will be good or bad. That is the measure of the disdain in which our society holds cyclists ...
    Okay, but what Hurst is really saying is it's an insignificant issue. He is saying that if everybody who is so embroiled with this great Question suddenly quit for good, at this point it wouldn't make much difference.

    The unbearable lightness of being. Specifically, the unbearable lightness of being a bike lane pundit.

    Robert

  15. #165
    Banned. galen_52657's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chipcom
    and as stated a hundred times before...when someone trys to pass such a law I'll be fighting them. Nobody around here is contemplating requiring me to use them...nothing at the Federal level that I know of either...they trying to require it in your area Galen?
    To late, it's done: link: http://www.sha.state.md.us/exploremd...bike_laws1.pdf

    Cut & Paste:

    21-1205.1 Bicycles, motor scooters, and EPAMD’s prohibited on certain roadways and highways; speed limit. (a) In general -Notwithstanding any other provision of this title, a person may not ride a bicycle or motor scooter; (1) On any roadway where the posted maximum speed limit is more than 50 miles per hour [Cyclists may operate on the shoulder of a roadway where the posted speed limit exceeds 50 mph unless otherwise prohibited.]; or (2) On any expressway, except on an adjacent bicycle path or way approved by the State Highway Administration, or on any other controlled access highway signed in accordance with 21-313 of this title. (b) Roadway with bike lane or shoulder paved to a smooth surface. – (1) Where there is a bike lane paved to a smooth surface or a shoulder paved to a smooth surface [COMAR October 29, 1979 defines smooth surface as a surface that has a texture equal to or better than the adjacent roadway and if the surface contains undulations which are no longer than the adjacent roadway.], a person operating a bicycle or a motor scooter shall use the bike lane or shoulder and may not ride on the roadway, except in the following situations: (i) When overtaking and passing another bicycle, motor scooter, pedestrian, or other vehicle within the bike lane or shoulder; (ii) When preparing for a left turn at an intersection or into an alley, private road, or driveway; (iii) When reasonably necessary to leave the bike lane or shoulder to avoid debris or other hazardous condition; or (iv) When reasonably necessary to leave the bike lane or shoulder because the bike lane or shoulder is overlaid with a right turn lane, merge lane, or other marking that breaks the continuity of the bike lane or shoulder. (2) A person operating a bicycle or a motor scooter may not leave a bike lane or shoulder until the movement can be made with reasonable safety and the only after giving an appropriate signal. (3) The Department shall promulgate rules and regulations pertaining to this subsection which will include, but not limited to, a definition of “smooth surface.” (c) Motor scooter speed limit – A motor scooter may not be operated at a speed in excess of 30 miles per hour. (d) Restrictions on operating EPAMDs. – Notwithstanding any other provision of this title, a person may not operate an EPAMD on any roadway where there are sidewalks adjacent to the roadway or the posted maximum speed limit is more than 30 miles per hour. (e) EPAMD speed limit – An EPAMD may not be operated at a speed in excess of 15 miles per hour.

  16. #166
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    One more example of why MD is commie state. When was this language added to the books over there?
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

  17. #167
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    Too many reasons in this poll and thread. We lost the poll guys and gals.

    No, sorry John, I'd rather not have you advocating for me until you can provide documentation in your writing. You've got a bad habit of not citing your statistics and "clearly accepted" notions. I run screaming in the other direction whenever a writer or speaker says that something is "obvious" or "clearly accepted" or "common knowledge" and even more so when the person doesn't back up their "obviously" with a "and here's why" with a whole lot of data and back-up data from OTHER SOURCES as well as good experimental documentation.

  18. #168
    Sumanitu taka owaci LittleBigMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobertHurst
    ...Hurst is really saying is it's an insignificant issue.
    Mr. Hurst,

    I respect your view that the presence or absence of a bike lane stripe is an insignificant issue. I have mentioned before in another thread, "Stripes," that width is width, as long as it's swept clean. It's not my defining opinion on bike lanes, but rather a concession, much like you also concede (and I agree) that we have to navigate the environment we are given.

    But one problem I have with a bike facility that an experienced person has to adapt to and navigate outside of it's intended use, such as a bike lane in a door zone, is that while it's not rocket science for an experienced cyclist, it's potentially lethal to an inexperienced cyclist. To argue that the stripe is irrelevant to an experienced cyclist in this case is to ignore the fact that the stripe is of immense importance to the inexperienced cyclist, who rides obediently in the door zone, oblivious to the danger. One might even argue that the stripe was painted in this case primarily for the inexperienced cyclist, which makes it that much worse.

    I am certainly not anti-facility. But I believe strongly that the basic designs of all bicycle facilties should be to the same standard of excellence that we've come to expect for motoring. All cyclists and motorists alike must accept some level of personal risk, but we also don't expect our roads to put us in harm's way unnecessarily. When poor road designs are discovered through higher-than-normal crash rates (and fatalities,) they are often redesigned to alleviate as much of their inherent dangers as practical given local budgets.

    A good example of this is a major 6 lane, 45 mph. artery in my area, which included a middle turning lane stretching for miles. This road ran through a large commercial shopping area, lined by restaurants and many other businesses. There were so many crashes (many fatal) along this strip due to left-hand-turners in the center lane cutting in front of 50 mph. oncoming traffic that a median was finally installed. It drove most of the major business away, but it became safe. I suspect many lives were lost while dilly-dallying over the forseen negative economic effects of a proposed redesign of the road.
    Last edited by LittleBigMan; 04-10-07 at 07:03 AM.
    No worries

  19. #169
    Banned. galen_52657's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by chipcom
    One more example of why MD is commie state. When was this language added to the books over there?
    LIBERAL...a LIBERAL state (as opposed to a red-neck state)

    If you read the fine print it's not all that restrictive. Most of the roads it would apply to nobody would ride anyway, like US Route 40 or Route 1 outside of Baltimore City (and I drive some of them and I never see a cyclist) which are all parallelled by smaller roads with lower speed limits with no shoulders and no bike lanes. If you look at the roads this statute applies to, the state is just designating the shoulder as a bike lane and when the shoulder turns into a right-turn-only lane the state installs 'share the road' signage a hundred feet or so before the RTO lane and then re-designates the shoulder as a bike lane on the other side of the intersection.

    So, all-in-all it's an exercise in creative signage which changes nothing on the ground on roads that nobody rides anyway.... (your tax dollars at work....)

  20. #170
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleBigMan
    Mr. Hurst,

    I respect your view that the presence or absence of a bike lane stripe is an insignificant issue. I have mentioned before in another thread, "Stripes," that width is width, as long as it's swept clean. It's not my defining opinion on bike lanes, but rather a concession, much like you also concede (and I agree) that we have to navigate the environment we are given.

    But one problem I have with a bike facility that an experienced person has to adapt to and navigate outside of it's intended use, such as a bike lane in a door zone, is that while it's not rocket science for an experienced cyclist, it's potentially lethal to an inexperienced cyclist. To argue that the stripe is irrelevant to an experienced cyclist in this case is to ignore the fact that the stripe is of immense importance to the inexperienced cyclist, who rides obediently in the door zone, oblivious to the danger. One might even argue that the stripe was painted in this case primarily for the inexperienced cyclist, which makes it that much worse.

    Morning LittleBigMan,

    There are problems with some bike lanes perhaps corralling some inexperienced riders into riding too far right, as you mention. But bike lanes can also encourage inexperienced riders to ride in the street, with traffic, and may even coax some riders into riding farther left than they would otherwise. Nobody has shown bike lanes to be a net benefit or a net harm to inexperienced riders, and we all seem to agree that they do not pose a significant problem for experienced riders.

    Practically speaking, it's a non-issue.

    Robert

  21. #171
    Dominatrikes sbhikes's Avatar
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    If bike lanes are, practically speaking, a non-issue, than are anti-facilities "advocates" also a non-issue?
    ~Diane
    Recumbents: Lightning Thunderbolt, '06 Catrike Pocket. Upright: Trek Mountain Bike.
    8.5 mile commute. I like bike lanes.

  22. #172
    Sumanitu taka owaci LittleBigMan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RobertHurst
    Morning LittleBigMan,

    There are problems with some bike lanes perhaps corralling some inexperienced riders into riding too far right, as you mention. But bike lanes can also encourage inexperienced riders to ride in the street, with traffic, and may even coax some riders into riding farther left than they would otherwise. Nobody has shown bike lanes to be a net benefit or a net harm to inexperienced riders, and we all seem to agree that they do not pose a significant problem for experienced riders.

    Practically speaking, it's a non-issue.

    Robert
    Robert,

    I'd disagree if we're talking about poor bike lane design. Whatever degree of inexperience allows traffic engineers to accomodate cyclists on bike lanes in door zones, or bike lanes of insufficient width, or bike lanes punctuated by drains or other causes of uneven pavement, etc., would never be tolerated if applied to road design for motor traffic.

    It is this double standard which makes discussion of bike lanes important. Substandard bike lanes are the manifestation of a problem of perception by traffic engineers and the general public. The degree of variation in bike lane implementations, from very good to very bad, represents such disparity that any discussion of bike lanes must also include this problem of perception, for it results in substandard bike lanes.

    I believe the status of cyclists, considered by the majority of Americans as being lower than that of the common motorist insofar as their place in the road is concerned, is at the root of poor bike lane (and bike path) design and implementation. If we were considered equally important, we'd not be getting substandard treatment. I consider this problem more important than whether or not a percentage of cyclists have access to good facilities, unless those good facilities are used as models everywhere bike lanes are implemented.

    Cyclists should not be an afterthought. That can put us in harm's way.
    No worries

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    Quote Originally Posted by Severian
    Too many reasons in this poll and thread. We lost the poll guys and gals.

    No, sorry John, I'd rather not have you advocating for me until you can provide documentation in your writing. You've got a bad habit of not citing your statistics and "clearly accepted" notions. I run screaming in the other direction whenever a writer or speaker says that something is "obvious" or "clearly accepted" or "common knowledge" and even more so when the person doesn't back up their "obviously" with a "and here's why" with a whole lot of data and back-up data from OTHER SOURCES as well as good experimental documentation.
    My statistics? The only statistical data that I have collected is that concerning cyclist behavior. The results have been posted on my website for many years. I frequently quote statistics collected by others, and I cite sources. Cross, Kaplan, CTC, Nat. Safety Council, etc. Furthermore, most of the data that I cite is discussed in detail in Bicycle Transportation. When I mention standard traffic engineering knowledge I am referring to the information embodied in documents such as the California Highway Design Manual and the California Traffic Manual, and often found in summaries such as the Transportation and Traffic Engineering Handbook.

    You would like more information from "good experimental documentation". Yes, that would be nice, but nobody is paid to perform experiments in bicycle transportation engineering. Some people are paid to perform experiments that are hoped to support the bikeway hypothesis, a hope that has never materialized. You may have read discussions of their dubious results. In every scientific or engineering question, one must evaluate the weight of the evidence on each side. In science, one has the duty to wait for strong evidence, but in practical engineering, in which action is being taken today, one has to go with the relative weights, even if they do not meet the standards for scientific acceptance. The overwhelming weight of the evidence between vehicular cycling and bikeway cycling is that vehicular cycling provides the better service in terms of safety and convenience. In fact, there is no evidence that bikeway systems provide better safety and convenience.

    Your implication that statements made for which there is no OTHER SOURCE (your emphasis) are unreliable depends on the state of the knowledge discipline. Even in major areas, such as medicine, highly unreliable claims are frequently provided with much supporting documentation; one always has to evaluate the quality of the evidence. However, in major areas, it is quite reasonable for an outsider to accept the data and reasoning supported by the majority of the profession. It is different in a financial backwater such as bicycle transportation engineering, where the valuable work is being done by amateurs because those who are paid are paid to work in the bikeways profession against lawful, competent cyclists. I happen to have arranged my professional life so that I can devote time and effort to bicycle transportation engineering without monetary return. There it is. I cite the work of others wherever it is reliable and relevant, but I am the one who has worked the information into a reasoned whole. If you want to complain, then complain at what I have done, or have not done, rather than wishing that bicycle transportation engineering were a paying profession.

  24. #174
    Senior Member randya's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LittleBigMan
    But one problem I have with a bike facility that an experienced person has to adapt to and navigate outside of it's intended use, such as a bike lane in a door zone, is that while it's not rocket science for an experienced cyclist, it's potentially lethal to an inexperienced cyclist. To argue that the stripe is irrelevant to an experienced cyclist in this case is to ignore the fact that the stripe is of immense importance to the inexperienced cyclist, who rides obediently in the door zone, oblivious to the danger. One might even argue that the stripe was painted in this case primarily for the inexperienced cyclist, which makes it that much worse.
    Without other information, the inexperienced cyclist is going to ride in the door zone regardless of whether or not a stripe is present. I would further argue that an inexperienced cyclist is more likely to ride closer to parked cars if a stripe is not present than if a stripe is present, because ideally the stripe should offer a minimum roadway width of 5 to 6 feet of car-free roadway for the inexperienced cyclist, and even if they ride in the middle of the bike lane, they will be near or beyond the outer edge of the door zone. An inexperienced cyclist is not going to take full advantage of a shared lane and will ride closer to the parked cars simply because motorists in a shared lane are not obligated to, and frequently don't, give cyclists sufficient clearance to feel comfortable riding outside the door zone.

  25. #175
    your nightmare gal chipcom's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by randya
    Without other information, the inexperienced cyclist is going to ride in the door zone regardless of whether or not a stripe is present.
    This study seems to indicate the the presence of a bike lane stripe might actually influence cyclists to ride farther away from the door zone. http://www.ci.cambridge.ma.us/%7ECDD...hamp_study.pdf
    "Let us hope our weapons are never needed --but do not forget what the common people knew when they demanded the Bill of Rights: An armed citizenry is the first defense, the best defense, and the final defense against tyranny. If guns are outlawed, only the government will have guns. Only the police, the secret police, the military, the hired servants of our rulers. Only the government -- and a few outlaws. I intend to be among the outlaws" - Edward Abbey

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