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Man sets up camera to monitor bike lane blocking

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Man sets up camera to monitor bike lane blocking

Old 03-16-18, 12:13 PM
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Arthur Peabody
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Man sets up camera to monitor bike lane blocking

  • https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/15/n...-new-york.html
  • Alex Bell hates it when the designated bike lane he is pedaling down is blocked. So, too, do many cycling New Yorkers. But Mr. Bell hates it so much that he has tried to do something about it: Three years ago he sued U.P.S., targeting the delivery company's trucks for blocking his bike path, a case he lost that is in its second round of appeals.
  • Now Mr. Bell is trying another tack - the 30-year-old computer scientist who lives in Harlem has created a prototype of a machine-learning algorithm that studies footage from a traffic camera and tracks precisely how often bike lanes are obstructed by delivery trucks, parked cars and waiting cabs, among other scofflaws. It is a piece of data that transportation advocates said is missing in the largely anecdotal discussion of how well the city's bus and bike lanes do or do not work.
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Old 03-16-18, 12:30 PM
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Old 03-16-18, 01:44 PM
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I know your "conversations" are write-only, but really, trite-meme-only?

Bus Lane Blocked, He Trained His Computer to Catch Scofflaws

I've written elsewhere:

(Oh, the number one complaint of bus operators on the Silver Line? Double parking. The number one complaint of people on bikes on that bus/bike lane? Double parking.)

-mr. bill
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Old 03-16-18, 04:42 PM
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As if a cyclist leaving a bike lane to go around a double parked car is even a thing, much less comparable to a bus having to go around a car double-parked in a bus lane.

I mean, how lazy do you have to be to be bothered even a little by having to move your line over a few feet?

Last edited by Ninety5rpm; 03-16-18 at 04:50 PM.
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Old 03-16-18, 04:42 PM
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I also have to point out that NYC has a "must-use" law regarding bike lanes, so it's not a case of a cyclist catching the vapors because he has to ride out of the bike lane. Cyclists in the city can and do get hefty fines, often regardless of obstructions. I applaud this guys initiative to track the problem in the bike and bus lanes.
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Old 03-16-18, 04:48 PM
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OMG, look how challenging this must be!



Where could a bicyclist possibly go?



The horror!

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Old 03-16-18, 05:41 PM
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Originally Posted by punkinevil View Post
I also have to point out that NYC has a "must-use" law regarding bike lanes, so it's not a case of a cyclist catching the vapors because he has to ride out of the bike lane. Cyclists in the city can and do get hefty fines, often regardless of obstructions. I applaud this guys initiative to track the problem in the bike and bus lanes.
You made me look it up.

(p) Bicycles.
(1)Bicycle riders to use bicycle lanes. Whenever a usable path or lane for bicycles has been
provided, bicycle riders shall use such path or lane only except under any of the following
situations:
(i) When preparing for a turn at an intersection or into a private road or driveway.
(ii) When reasonably necessary to avoid conditions (including but not limited to, fixed or
moving objects, motor vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, pushcarts, animals, surface hazards)
that make it unsafe to continue within such bicycle path or lane.
.

Obviously you can't just swerve around the parked car. You need to look back and signal first, possibly negotiating for right of way if necessary. This is no different from anywhere else that I know of. This is really cycling 101. I mean, if a blocked bike lane is a problem, maybe you shouldn't be riding in traffic. Just saying.

See pp 59-60:
http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/trafrule.pdf
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Old 03-16-18, 05:52 PM
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A person could drive him or herself absolutely nuts fretting about these and other sorts of scofflaws. Crusades come with a ball and chain. Best to interact with an impediment the most graceful way possible and then put it out of mind.

Also, I think that it is a good assumption that we all benefit from delivery folks. If we forcefully compelled them to park in designated areas, the likely outcome would be higher shipping costs and longer shipping times.
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Old 03-16-18, 06:00 PM
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Originally Posted by Ninety5rpm View Post
You made me look it up.
Nobody made you do anything.

What part of “can and do get hefty fines, regardless of obstructions” did you not understand?

Bike Lane tickets

-mr. bill
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Old 03-16-18, 06:06 PM
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
Nobody made you do anything.

What part of “can and do get hefty fines, regardless of obstructions” did you not understand?

Bike Lane tickets

-mr. bill
I was just going to post the famous Casey Neistat video, but I see your link contains it.
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Old 03-16-18, 06:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Shimagnolo View Post
I was just going to post the famous Casey Neistat video, but I see your link contains it.
Twofer. Can’t wait for Gothamist to Phoenix*, but still holding my breath for the excellent reporters.

BTW, BUS LANES!

-mr. bill

*The legendary bird, not the city or The Cambridge ((our fair city) MA) Phoenix which became The Boston Phoenix which eventually became The Phoenix which did not rise up....
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Old 03-16-18, 06:36 PM
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Originally Posted by mr_bill View Post
Nobody made you do anything.
Figure of speech. You might be the most captious person I've ever encountered.


What part of “can and do get hefty fines, regardless of obstructions” did you not understand?

Bike Lane tickets

-mr. bill
I understand it perfectly. That's a reason to get some justice, not a reason to complain about silly trivial insignificant inconveniences.
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Old 03-16-18, 06:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Ninety5rpm View Post

(p) Bicycles.
(1)Bicycle riders to use bicycle lanes. Whenever a usable path or lane for bicycles has been
provided, bicycle riders shall use such path or lane only except under any of the following
situations:
(i) When preparing for a turn at an intersection or into a private road or driveway.
(ii) When reasonably necessary to avoid conditions (including but not limited to, fixed or
moving objects, motor vehicles, bicycles, pedestrians, pushcarts, animals, surface hazards)
that make it unsafe to continue within such bicycle path or lane.
.
I don't feel like getting into some sort of Jr. High flame war over this. The phrase "reasonably necessary" is keen to very broad interpretation, and the NYPD can be positively giddy about ticketing cyclists (especially towards the end of the month). There are a lot of people who have been ticketed, most of whom don't have the time to fight it in court. This isn't theoretical. This is how it works.

Additionally, I'm not sure why we're arguing about this. I can also walking around the dog crap on the sidewalk in front of my building, but that doesn't mean it's ok for people to let their dogs crap there OR that I shouldn't try to get them to stop. I can go around the cars parked in the bike lane (sometimes 5 along one block) but that doesn't mean I shouldn't try to do something about that bad behavior

The crux of this article was mainly about obstructing bus lanes, which involves the exact same mindset and behavior (generally, the only difference is which side of the street the offenders park on).
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Old 03-16-18, 07:09 PM
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Originally Posted by punkinevil View Post
I don't feel like getting into some sort of Jr. High flame war over this. The phrase "reasonably necessary" is keen to very broad interpretation, and the NYPD can be positively giddy about ticketing cyclists (especially towards the end of the month). There are a lot of people who have been ticketed, most of whom don't have the time to fight it in court. This isn't theoretical. This is how it works.

Additionally, I'm not sure why we're arguing about this. I can also walking around the dog crap on the sidewalk in front of my building, but that doesn't mean it's ok for people to let their dogs crap there OR that I shouldn't try to get them to stop. I can go around the cars parked in the bike lane (sometimes 5 along one block) but that doesn't mean I shouldn't try to do something about that bad behavior

The crux of this article was mainly about obstructing bus lanes, which involves the exact same mindset and behavior (generally, the only difference is which side of the street the offenders park on).
Well said.

People double park mostly because they need to deliver or pickup someone or something. Yes we need laws to prohibit it, but I think complaining about vehicles in bike lanes is akin to complaining about cyclists who roll stops. Dog excrement on the sidewalk is on a whole 'nother level - that actually matters because someone is likely to accidentally step into the pile. But bicyclists aren't really affected by cars parked in bike lanes, just like nobody is affected by stop sign rolling cyclists. It should be trivially easy to go around a parked car, just like it should be trivially easy to ignore a stop sign rolling cyclist who doesn't harm or affect anyone.

NYPD ticketing cyclists for that needs addressing separately. That's outrageous.
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Old 03-16-18, 07:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Arthur P*****y View Post
In Toronto, we have/had a team of parking enforcement officers on bicycles not only ticketing vehicles parked in the bike lanes but also socially shaming them on Twitter.

It was very effective. Delivery trucks were the biggest culprits and they have since changed their policies.

I even notice when I see a vehicle parked in the bike lane up ahead, the drivers are very keen on moving their vehicles well in advance of my approach.

If you can't enforce this kind of thing, what's the point of parking fines, no parking zones, etc?

I wonder why some people think bad driving is acceptable.

Last edited by Daniel4; 03-16-18 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 03-16-18, 07:40 PM
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BUS LANES

-mr. bill
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Old 03-16-18, 07:41 PM
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Originally Posted by punkinevil View Post
I also have to point out that NYC has a "must-use" law regarding bike lanes, so it's not a case of a cyclist catching the vapors because he has to ride out of the bike lane. Cyclists in the city can and do get hefty fines, often regardless of obstructions. I applaud this guys initiative to track the problem in the bike and bus lanes.
The "must use" rules are not an impediment to cyclists going around obstructions. In fact, one can legally leave the bike lane for any number of reasons, including potholes, glass shards, or just about anything that renders them unsafe or otherwise, not suitable.

Not disputing that cops are citing cyclists for not using the lane provided, but that's on the cops, not the cyclists or anything that may be blocking it. I understand that some things claimed as "unsafe" may be debatable, such as how much broken glass is justification, but outright blockage by a parked vehicle is obvious and any citation issued under that condition is a serious abuse of police authority.

So, maybe instead of focusing on cars and trucks blocking the lane, maybe we should focus on identifying cops issuing citations on an "any port in a storm" basis, and have them or their commanders sanctioned and retrained.
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Old 03-16-18, 11:41 PM
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The NYPD Is Cracking Down On Cyclists Riding Outside Bike Lanes: Gothamist
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Old 03-17-18, 12:01 AM
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FWIW - that's a year old news.

Of course things probably haven't changed much since then.
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Old 03-17-18, 12:56 AM
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Originally Posted by FBinNY View Post
FWIW - that's a year old news.

Of course things probably haven't changed much since then.
NYPD v Bike Kill story published just before Gothamist was shut down.

It is safe to strike the word “probably” and change “much” to “at all.”

What we owe Gothamist and DNAinfo.

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Old 03-17-18, 01:14 AM
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I feel like this thread is losing focus, as they often do. I know I am partly to blame for bringing up the NYC must-use ordinance. My point really was if there is such an ordinance, it is completely reasonable that the bike lane be rideable. Additionally, I don't think we should just shrug and give bad actors a pass, saying is not a big deal. Personally, I am angered when someone does the wrong thing for their own convenience and winds up inconveniencing me. That's not even taking into account the added safety hazard. In these cases I now have to watch the traffic to my right, the vehicle stopped in front of me, how much room I'll have to pass it, whether it is going to door me, if I give enough clearance to avoid being doored will I be in the blind spot of the boxtruck passing on my right and can I split the lane, and can I swerve around the pedestrian who will pop out around the front of the vehicle parked in the bike lane, all while watching for the ever-present rim-crunching potholes. Yes, I am aware the city cycling requires a high level of attentiveness, but I don't need extra crap thrown in my way. And those little obstacles to add up. My commute to my client in Times Square takes about 30 minutes, 15 of it is moving time. I estimate about 10 of it is time wasted avoiding obstacles that shouldn't be in the bike lanes anyway.
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Old 03-17-18, 01:29 PM
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Here's story about a man blocking traffic in his neighbourhood because the authorities won't do anything about the speeding traffic.

http://www.cbc.ca/amp/1.4562627

There's a similar story a year earlier about another guy using a hair dryer to slow down traffic because it looks like a radar gun.
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Old 03-17-18, 07:40 PM
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Without comment:

Shopping cart.

-mr. bill
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Old 03-18-18, 01:04 PM
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Is there a law in NYC that a car or delivery truck can't stop in a bike lane?
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Old 03-18-18, 03:32 PM
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Originally Posted by Kontact View Post
Is there a law in NYC that a car or delivery truck can't stop in a bike lane?
No different legally than a car or delivery truck stopping in any other travel lane.
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