the topic of "nice shareable road speeds" was brought up in a recent thread.
what is a nice shareable road speed? of course cyclists should be allowed to ride on roads of most any speed, but what would be considered a nice, shareable road speed?
There are different standards for 'nice shareable road speeds'; American roadway design standards are that sharrows, shared lane markings not be placed on roads with speeds greater than 35mph. the FHWA feels that there are more effective ways to manage greater than this level of speed differential between bike and motor vehicle traffic.
In Europe, widespread use of TEMPO30 zones, roads where the speed limit is set at less than 19 miles an hour (30 km/hr) are considered safe shareable road speeds for cyclists and motor vehicles without any separation by class. in some european countries, the use of much more speed restrictive woonerven keep motor vehicle speeds at very low limits. along woonefs, pedestrian and bike traffic establish the nice shareable road speed as they have traffic priority along woonerven.
Londons' cycling design standards favor nice shared road space at lower speeds and separation at higher speeds or traffic volumes "Cycle lanes or tracks should be provided to assist cyclists where motor vehicle flows and/or speeds are medium or high"
what should a 'nice shareable road speed' be? TEMPO 30 zones, america's 35mph standard, or somewhere either side? keep in mind the european approach of tempo 30 zones is concurrent with much higher ridership and lower accident rates for cyclists, and more riders of all ages both men and women.
this suggests the lower the speed -among other interventions- the greater the comfortability of roads that meet nice sharable standards by members of the public. I believe Jennifer Dill has tracked cyclists in portland and shown cyclists will travel to get to a prefered route with more shareable road speeds or facilities.
in contemplation of this design speed, consider all members of the public as these are public roads. consider the senior citizen, the school children as well as your own mettle when coming up with a safe shareable road speed most members of the public would feel comfortable on.
what should be considered a nice shareable road speed for all members of the public wishing to bicycle?