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Where do you like to commute at/

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Where do you like to commute at/

Old 10-19-10, 04:41 AM
  #1  
spaze13
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Where do you like to commute at/

I like to commute through the back steets cause its more of a less drama getting to the main highway and cars speeding past you.
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Old 10-19-10, 05:04 AM
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The devil is in the details. Some back streets can be dangerous with cars pulling in and out of drive ways, car doors opening in front of you, clueless people walking into the street between parked cars, etc. Some highways have nicely paved shoulders or bike lanes that are pleasant enough even with the cars speeding by. So it really depends on the specifics of the road and the rider to determine the best route and not a question of whether back streets or arterials are better. Sure, all things being equal we want to ride on quiet roads with little traffic but if that means a stop sign at every intersection we may be willing to put up with more traffic to avoid all the stopping. What I dislike the most is not traffic but poor road surface quality.
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Old 10-19-10, 05:27 AM
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I'm lucky I have a few miles of crushed limestone trail to commute home. I leave at 4:15am to work and there isn't any traffic to speak of. Mostly neighborhood streets on my way to work (almost no traffic) and neighborhood/trail/park roads on my way home. A very nice commute.

That said, everywhere else I go...to the grocery store, hardware store, etc, is heave traffic. Mostly it doesn't bother me. I'm used to it for the most part. I just have to be more careful.

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Old 10-19-10, 07:22 AM
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I have no real choice. My commute is all rural, and this is a very old settlement area, the roads follow old trading paths between towns. A bunch of radials out from each town to the others around. If you want to get from one place to another between towns, there's really only one way to go. If I want to take an alternate route, at the least it adds 3 or 4 miles to an 11 mile commute.

There is no bicycle infrastructure around here, and few of the roads even have paved shoulders. It's 2 lane roads, zero shoulder, 50+ MPH roads.

I don't really have any trouble with traffic though. Drivers are pretty good and the amount of traffic on a route never really comes into the equation.
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Old 10-19-10, 07:43 AM
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Originally Posted by ItsJustMe
I have no real choice. My commute is all rural, and this is a very old settlement area, the roads follow old trading paths between towns. A bunch of radials out from each town to the others around. If you want to get from one place to another between towns, there's really only one way to go. If I want to take an alternate route, at the least it adds 3 or 4 miles to an 11 mile commute.

There is no bicycle infrastructure around here, and few of the roads even have paved shoulders. It's 2 lane roads, zero shoulder, 50+ MPH roads.

I don't really have any trouble with traffic though. Drivers are pretty good and the amount of traffic on a route never really comes into the equation.
Welcome to my world
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Old 10-19-10, 08:43 AM
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Originally Posted by xtrajack
Welcome to my world
And welcome to mine.
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Old 10-19-10, 08:55 AM
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A combination of back streets, MUPs, one state highway and through a college campus that's equal to an urban traffic area. Of all of these the college campus has proven to be the most problematic. Everybody who bicycles will have a list of close call stories eventually, but an young idiot looking left instead of frontwards while entering a traffic circle gave me one that left me shaking for an hour afterwards.
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Old 10-19-10, 09:09 AM
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I like the back streets. The ones that I ride on are reasonably well maintained. They aren't like the major roads, but they also don't have all the debris that the major roads have, not to mention the traffic. It is almost non existant on the route I take.
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Old 10-19-10, 09:28 AM
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I prefer MUPs when they're available - fewer intersections, less opportunity for a brain dead driver to take me out. But they aren't perfect, either -- plenty of brain dead (or iPod consumed) pedestrians not paying attention to other users.

Honestly, my second choice is well maintained, multi-lane streets; at least then I don't feel like people are crossing the center line to give me space, and risking a collision with an oncoming car. This isn't about 'guilt' - this is about lessening the opportunity for idiots to cause harm to others. Just last night I had a young kid in daddy's BMW come around me to the left on a residential street when I had TAKEN the lane. He was all the way across what would have been the center line, and actually in what is, from time to time, a parking area, all because he wasn't happy with my forward progress up a short hill. Honestly, I take the lane, there, to avoid exactly what he did -- most people aren't as dumb as he was -- because the line of sight over the hill is limited, and I don't want folks being on the wrong side of the road. I move over to the right as soon as I crest the hill. BTW: This is a residential neighborhood through street, with parked cars on both sides, barely wide enough for two way traffic, and where traffic really shouldn't ever exceed 25 MPH, and probably shouldn't exceed 15 or 20 to be safe.
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Old 10-19-10, 09:59 AM
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I prefer neighborhood "back" streets, mostly because they're charming. Being empty is nice, too, although if I let my guard down, a squirrel is going to jump under my wheel, or something. But it's quieter, I get to see a lot of different styles of housing, some cool gardens, etc. On the other hand, it isn't every block that you can get under the freeway, and there are only a handful of bridges over the shipping canal, so I wind up on some arterials, too.
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Old 10-19-10, 10:11 AM
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I take which ever route seems to serve me best. My current route has a combination of high density urban streets, 4 lane divided highways, quiet suburban streets and some MUP.

The coolest route I ever had was a 7.5 mile commute that started with a 300 foot drop to wake me up and then a 5 mile section that went through the local nature preserve. Traffic was coyotes, deer, skunk, bobcats and hummingbirds instead of Mustangs, Impalas, Camaros and Cadillacs.

But quiet is never a guarantee of safety. One of the worse bike accidents I had was in a quiet alley. As I came around a blind corner slowly, a 4 year old was riding a bike on the wrong side of the alley and ran straight into me. He was okay, but my fork was destroyed.
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Old 10-19-10, 10:15 AM
  #12  
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I have a a few routes that I can take on my ride to work. Fortunately Lincoln has alot of bike paths and bike routes. I take these pretty much the whole way. In the last couple of months I have found a better route that actually pretty much what Google maps bike route beta would have told me to go, but it took me a couple years to realize it. The new route includes a nice wide residential street plenty wide and hardly any traffic at all. Its a steady up hill climb, but that last leg of the journey includes this no matter what way you go. The only part I don't like is one intersection you really have to watch for cars turning right as I pass through it because often they are not paying any attention to anything to do with the bike path. In general if there is no bike path options residential areas seem nicer to go through since they have less traffic more relaxing and in general more interesting as well. The exception is if they are too narrow with cars parked on both sides.
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Old 10-19-10, 10:52 AM
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I have exactly one place on my route where I can take a back street, for 2 blocks. On the way in, in the morning, it's two right turns and a stop sign. If the stop lights are running (they're blinking yellow until 6AM) I take it. If they're blinking yellow I go the main road to avoid the stop sign.

On the way home, it's two lefts across the main road. If it's before about 4PM, I'll usually take the back road because I can get back onto the road again. But if it's after 4 usually, definitely if it's after 5, it can take quite a long time to get back into traffic on the main road again at the end of the detour, and I would have been better off staying on the main road. I can definitely keep up with traffic there, and in fact I can keep my speed way up higher since it's a gradual descent if I stay on the main road.
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Old 10-19-10, 11:26 AM
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Depends.. if it's downhill, I prefer major streets because I can move the speed of traffic and there's less stopping involved. If it's uphill, I prefer side streets with less traffic, but then I usually have more stops because it's usually residential.
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Old 10-19-10, 03:49 PM
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Ending a sentence with a preposition? Oh man.

Actually, I run a small business from home (photo restoration, web graphics, etc.) so I don't commute at all. We do have a fairly big plot of land in our development that I ride around in, but I never get on the paved roads, so I may need to jettison this thread. Ya think?

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Old 10-19-10, 04:07 PM
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Originally Posted by thompsonpost
Ending a sentence with a preposition? Oh man.
That's the kind of English up with which we cannot put!

( Not by Winston Churchill. )
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Old 10-19-10, 04:33 PM
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Originally Posted by thompsonpost
Ending a sentence with a preposition? Oh man.
Must be a Newfoundlander. "Ay b'ai! where ya to?"
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Old 10-19-10, 04:41 PM
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I've become much more comfortable on arterials this year. I'll even choose an arterial road over a parallel MUT in some cases because the road is faster and more direct (though I'm guessing that some/most drivers would prefer me to stick to the MUT). Busy MUTs are no fun, dodging pedestrian traffic. I don't mind residential roads; I've rarely had an issue with people backing out of driveways.
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Old 10-19-10, 04:57 PM
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Like to? I don't have a whole lot of choices, but I love to ride through the neighborhood for the first few miles and see and smell the area wake up at 15mph or so... However, I've encountered the worst drivers and hecklers on the same calm streets!
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Old 10-19-10, 05:05 PM
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Anywhere I can spin for a fairly long period without interruption from traffic, or traffic controls, and where I don't have to dodge anything... sometimes that means a back street, sometimes it is the MUP, sometimes it is a main arterial road at an odd time of day.

Residential streets don't do it as there are too many "intersections" where a car can suddenly pull out.

Industrial neighborhoods tend to be the best, especially when I am commuting just a bit earlier in the morning than the car crowd.
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Old 10-19-10, 05:07 PM
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Depends on how fast I wanna get to my destination. If I wanna get somewhere fast I take the main roads and deal with traffic.
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