What would a modern Pike/Pine bike facility look like?

In a welcome addition to the often-maligned downhill bike lane on E Pine, SDOT has painted a green bike lane through the intersection at Bellevue Ave on Capitol Hill. From my post at CHS:

The city only installed the green paint in the westbound (downhill) lane, and a new sign facing traffic facing southbound on Bellevue reminds people to yield to people biking in the lane before making a right turn onto Pine.

The green paint is meant to remind people turning to look out for people in the bike lane. Someone making a turn in front of someone biking is one of the most common types of traffic incidents involving people riding bikes.

One detail of note is that the city only painted the downhill portion green. When designing bike facilities in Seattle, we have the added challenge of figuring out how to modify our designs to meet the needs of a vehicle mode that goes 8 mph in one direction and 20+ mph in the other.

The green paint will not fix the awful door zone issue on Pine (always ride to the far left of the lane to give several feet of space for opening doors), but it does attempt to address the fact that people biking downhill are more vulnerable to turning cars. The green paint is a reminder to people turning across the lane to give an extra look for oncoming bicycle riders who they may not have seen at first glance.

A similar treatment seems fitting for many intersections on Pine, which is a vital bicycle route and should be treated as such (the intersection with Melrose stands out as confusing and dangerous).

But perhaps we should be thinking about more dramatic changes for the Pike/Pine corridor. What options do we might have for a more modern bicycle facility? Pine seems awfully crunched for space already, and with the needs of buses, it’s not clear how the city would be able to squeeze too much more space for bicycle facilities.

As city leaders signal their desires for protected bikeways downtown (perhaps on 2nd and 4th), there will also need to be a strong east-west facility. Perhaps we could look at Pike St for a two-way protected lane from Capitol Hill/Central District through downtown. Or maybe we could build a protected facility downhill on Pine and uphill on Pike (or vice versa).

Basically, Pike/Pine is such an important bicycle corridor that we need to be thinking about ways to construct modern bike facilities that increase safety and encourage more people to bike.

Imagine a day when heavily-used, protected bike lanes on Pike/Pine and 4th Ave intersect at Westlake Park. The shopping area and mall there would likely be right at the nexus of the evening bicycle rush hour (wink, wink, downtown business folks).

What changes (small or large) would you like to see in the Pike/Pine corridor?

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38 Responses to What would a modern Pike/Pine bike facility look like?

  1. Lisa says:

    This is something I’ve often thought about, downhill Pine seems super dangerous to me. In a lot of downhill cases, I feel safer merging with the general traffic lane than riding in the bike lane.

    In my crazy ideal world, Pine would be a bike/bus only street, maybe with business and delivery access. Capitol Hill is already dense enough and walkable enough that I don’t imagine it would have an impact on businesses. Perhaps Pine could be like 3rd ave, where private cars can go for a block for business access but then they have to turn off. But, would that cause more conflict because everyone is turning? I think buses could use Pine still as well, because they make predictable movements and bicycles tend to just pass them on the left.

    Here’s another crazy idea. What about downhill bike lanes on the left side? Bikes are usually going as fast or faster than cars downhill on Pine anyway, the left is a more common place for a driver to look for someone passing them. That gets rid of the door zone problem, but probably creates some more problems that I haven’t thought of yet. Bikes would be more visible to left-turning drivers from the opposite direction as well.

    It is definitely a trick designing for bikes. Just the other day I totally blocked one of the bike boxes on Capitol Hill when I was driving, because I’m so used to being able to turn right on red that I just shoved myself in the box to turn right before I saw the “no turn on red” sign.

    • Shane Phillips says:

      By bike lanes on the left side, do you mean between the east- and west-bound car lanes (as opposed to the south side of the entire corridor)? I think either way you get problems, perhaps the biggest simply being that we should shoot for as much consistency and regularity as possible. In my opinion, it is beneficial for both cars and bicyclists to know that the bike lane will always be on the right side. Confusion = danger. Still though, maybe there’s more to it. I think it’s good that you’re thinking outside the box.

      My question is why we don’t seem to have adopted any buffered parking spaces, with bike lanes closest to the sidewalk and then parking spaces further toward the middle of the road. There would be less people exiting vehicles on the right, and hugging the right side of a bicycle lane near a sidewalk would probably feel safer than hugging the left side near a car lane. It doesn’t really seem like the cost would be great either, since you’re really just repainting the concrete.

      • Shane Phillips says:

        On second thought, reading down it seems like visibility for bicyclists would be a huge issue with a lane against the sidewalk. You’d have to completely get rid of the cars, which I don’t really see happening.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        I’m not convinced that visibility needs to be a problem. I think SDOT just needs to look into how they can be designed in a way that addresses those issues. Quite simply, that may mean pulling parking back further from intersections on the downhill side. Maybe parking visibility standards could be defined in terms of seconds of visibility before entering an intersection (using some kind of average speed estimate) rather than distance. With a combination of encouraging slower bicycle travel and modifying the design to increase visibility, this seems achievable.

      • Shane Phillips says:

        I thought about that Tom, but imagine you have someone going downhill at 20-30 mph (or at whatever the speed limit is, for argument’s sake), and someone in a car at the south side of the intersection, waiting to cross Pine going north. Depending on the height of the parked cars and the height of the rider, it seems very possible that, through no fault of their own, the driver might simply not see the bicyclist coming. You would literally have to see them coming almost a block away (possibly more) to get through the intersection before the bicyclist.

      • Lisa says:

        Yeah, a bike lane between the east-west corridors was my crazy idea. Only on the westbound (downhill) side. This is taking into account the average travel speeds of bikes vs. cars- slower uphill and faster/just as fast downhill. However, you’re right, it causes major consistency issues. For example, this might work well on Pine where you’ve got congested traffic, so bikes are going faster, but it probably wouldn’t work on a more suburban style down hill road because car traffic would still be going faster than bicycle traffic.

        Speaking of dangerous downhills and crazy ideas, lets move the lane on second avenue into the middle of the road, rather than on the left where you’re getting doored and left turned-into. Or, better yet, slap a dedicated bikeway on third ave. Both ways. In the middle of the road where everyone can see you and you don’t run over pedestrians trying to get to the bus.

  2. matt says:

    I like the idea of a protected uphill lane on Pike and protected downhill lane on Pine (or vice versa). Having a protected two-lane bike path on one of those streets is begging for a bike-bike head-on collision.

  3. Andreas says:

    I’d really like to see the single dashed center stripe on Pine between Broadway & Summit replaced with a double yellow. This wouldn’t be about bicyclists alone; it’s more about the general safety of all users.

    When they added bus bulbs to 45th in Wallingford, in several spots they installed center islands as well, in recognition of the fact that despite it being illegal to use the turn lane for passing, many people would do just that if there weren’t a physical barrier to doing so (see WB at Woodlawn, and EB at Corliss). And I believe Dexter is a no-passing zone (by double-yellow, not physical barrier) all through the area where SDOT has just installed bus bulbs.

    By making it impossible—or at least illegal—for drivers to pass stopped buses, these bus bulbs function as general traffic-calming devices that improve the safety of all users. Sometimes the bus bulbs on Pine function this way, but much of the time they seem to have the opposite effect, as drivers and cyclists try to zoom around stopped buses before oncoming traffic reaches them. But neither drivers nor cyclists have the visibility to safely pass a 40-foot vehicle at these locations. Each bus zone on Pine has a rather heavily used crosswalk shortly after it, and passers can’t see (much less stop for) peds trying to cross. Peds also can’t see through stopped buses to know whether it’s safe to enter the crosswalk. And since all the cross-streets on Pine are relatively heavily trafficked, the odds of someone pulling out or turning onto Pine in front of a passing bike or car are pretty high, and again the passer can’t see that in time to safely react.

    Like I said, it’s not a bike facility per se, but every time I walk, bike, or bus on Pine, the people (both on bikes and in cars) who pass buses are the ones who strike me as putting both themselves and others at most risk, and it seems like only a matter of time before someone is killed or seriously injured. It may suck to get stuck behind a bus, but if it’s a long delay like a wheelchair loading, cyclists can always hop onto the sidewalk, (slowly) pass that way, then get back on the road. There’s no reason anyone, whether on a bike or in a car, should be bombing down a corridor as heavy with bike, car, and pedestrian traffic as Pine is.

    • JohnS says:

      +1 Andreas. I’m a regular Dexter traveler (on both bike and bus) and the bus islands have really helped calm traffic. My experiences on Pine indicate that what you say is totally true, and bombing past a bus you can’t see around is definitely going to cause a serious issue eventually.

    • Tom Fucoloro says:

      I wonder what the city would need to do to fix this issue on Pine. I wonder if the bus bulbs could come out further so that buses stop fully in lane (instead of pulling over in the bike lane). Then maybe a bikes could be routed behind the bus stop (at sidewalk level)? Hmm… sounds like a fun project for a traffic engineer. No idea if it would work, but it would be great to get rid of the temptation people on bikes and in cars have to pass those buses unsafely.

      • Andreas says:

        Yeah, I think those extra three or four feet make a big difference. Drivers can see oncoming traffic, so they go for it, not realizing that they can’t see peds or cross-traffic at all. And cyclists think they have enough room to pass even with oncoming traffic, but they don’t really, since you don’t want to be riding that close to a bus that could pull out any second (and mostly in the bus’s blind spot too).

        They could probably do pseudo-Dexter-style bus islands on Pine. Bump the bulbs out three or four feet so buses stop completely in-line, then either cut a trough through the sidewalk for a bike lane (with ramps for peds to get to/from the bus island) or bring the bike lane up onto the sidewalk behind the bus stop, then back down into the road on the other side—sort of like in the second image on this page. (Though on a hill like Pine I suspect the latter option might lead to drainage problems, with stormwater flowing up the ramps onto the sidewalks. An SDOT rep at a Dexter open house told me the reason they had to do bus islands instead of bus bulbs was because that would change drainage patterns and require moving storm drains & sewers around, which was far out of the budget.) Such an arrangement would put bikes in conflict with peds going to/from bus stops, but that’s a less lethal combination than cars & peds or cars & bikes. Though, again, cyclists would have to learn to take things a bit slower than they presently do on Pine. But so far that arrangement seems to be working fine on Dexter.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        Though people who want to bomb the hill could either ride in the general traffic lane or take Pike. Seems like we are talking about a facility designed for people looking to go a more relaxed pace.

        I have no idea what designs can safely slow bicycle traffic or if it’s really practical. Perhaps that should be a whole other topic of discussion: Do we need to always design facilities assuming someone will be bombing the hill? This is something the First Hill Streetcar folks are working out for the hilly sections of the Broadway cycle track. I wonder what they have come up with.

        On the other hand, the Chief Sealth Trail is hilly, and having two-way traffic there has never seemed like a problem to me. Maybe it’s not actaully an issue (though, of course, CST doesn’t have the same commercial environment).

      • Andreas says:

        Do we need to always design facilities assuming someone will be bombing the hill?

        Yes, I think we do, in the exact same way that if we want vehicles to travel 20 mph on a road, we can’t build it six lanes wide and straight as an arrow. Or, more on-point, in the same way that SDOT installed those islands on 45th to prevent people from passing stopped buses. We have to assume that some (if not most) people will go as fast as road design allows. If we design Pike/Pine in such a way that bicyclists can bomb the hill, some of them will. The fact that they currently do so, despite the quite obvious dangers, is solid evidence of this to me.

        I don’t think fast riders will take Pike, assuming they’re going downtown, because it turns into a one-way the wrong way once you’re over I-5. And while most fast cyclists will use the general purpose lane most of the time, the second they see a bus stopping ahead of them, many of them will simply move into the bike lane and continue apace right behind the bus island, risking collisions with pedestrians going to/from the bus stop.

        It could be that a simple jog in the bike lane is sufficient to slow speeding cyclists down enough to prevent conflicts—the lane on Dexter jogs to the right to go behind the bus stops, and I usually find myself having to brake a bit to take the jogs. But it may be that we need to fully separate the slow/normal bike lane from the general purpose lanes where the bombers should be, so that they can’t simply switch back and forth without slowing down to a safe speed. I’m not sure what exactly is needed. But either way, I do think we need to assume people will be bombing the hill. To not assume that is to ignore human nature and to court disaster.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        I agree. Or maybe we should make it clear that people riding fast should use the general purpose lanes instead. The people who feel perfectly comfortable today taking the lane could keep doing so. Bu then there’s the rest trying (to various degrees of success) to find that sweet spot between being in the lane and out of the car door zone. It seems to me it’s those riders this facility should help (as well as people who are not even riding yet because they are scared for all reasons already stated).

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        This could also be added to the list of reasons to oppose laws mandating that people ride in the bike lane.

    • David says:

      Also, a lot of the visibility concerns go away if you eliminate or place hour restrictions on parking in the downhill direction. Just saying.

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        Indeed. In fact, if we are going to keep the uphill bike lane on Pine, removing parking on the downhill section would seem to be the only way to do any of these ideas (we are very far into dreamland).

        But then we’d be looking at an expensive AND likely unpopular project. Not to say that we should shy away from that if it seems to be the only way to make the street safe, but we would need to be prepared to show that many other ideas were explored before resorting to removing half the parking. plus, due to the existing pedestrian curb bulbs, I’m not sure how much benefit removing parking entirely would get us.

        Now, if the city took out parking in favor of added sidewalk/public space, that would remove the door zone issue and provide businesses with tons of sidewalk cafe and otherwise desirable public space… It would be like a linear park all the way down Pine and the bike lane could be given a foot or two extra in width to make it safer.

      • Lisa says:

        That would be nice. If there’s any place in Seattle that needs more sidewalk space (outside of downtown) it’s Cap Hill. Maybe just don’t mention the bike lanes until they’re put in. . .

      • Another David says:

        Hour restrictions could mean more parking spot turnover, which leads to more car doors opening. But eliminating the spaces would be nice, if it can be offset by some off-street parking spaces in the immediate vicinity.

  4. David says:

    Not to shift the conversation away from Pike/Pine, but a protected two-way path could also be a great augmentation to 10th Ave E from roughly Saint Mark’s Cathedral north to Roanoke Park. A lot of southbound bicyclists already use the sidewalk on the east side of the street, and the sharrows in the northbound travel lane often force me to ride faster than I would otherwise prefer just to try to keep up with cars. it would also create a really nice connection to the soft-surface path through Roanoke Park that starts at the crosswalk on the northeast corner of 10th & Roanoke.

  5. Gary says:

    The problem with “protected” cycle tracks on Pike & Pine is that there are a zillion cross streets without lights at the intersection. A bicyclist zooming down the hill is invisible to a left turning car coming up the hill behind a cycle track.

    Riding down the hill on either road, yes take a lane. You can keep up with traffic and it’s safer out there.

    Myself I ride only a short section of E. Pine from 17th to Harvard, or Summit and then I’m out’a there. I go North through that neighborhood and there are almost no cars on Summit.

    The safest thing is a “bike Blvd”, ie a street with a 20mph speed limit that’s essentially neighborhood only traffic. 19th & 20th going N/S are already close to this.

    • Tom Fucoloro says:

      The problem is there there is no other street that goes from Capitol Hill/CD to downtown with a reasonable grade that are not stopped by either I-5 or Seattle Central. I would be very interested in ideas that involve parallel side streets, but I can’t think of one that’s convenient. Any ideas? Union is OK, but it goes up and over an extra hill and the crossing with 12th/Madison is awful and will probably incredibly expensive to fix. However, the city should be looking into that, anyway, since that intersection is a death trap for people walking, driving and biking alike.

      Pike and/or Pine seem to be the only options for this trip.

      As for the downhill in a protected lane problem, I think we need to be figuring out how to make it safe. I don’t think a downhill protected bike lane would look exactly like one on flat terrain, but SDOT could forge the way with designs that, say, pull parked cars further back from intersections to allow for better visibility of faster-moving people on bikes. Or maybe downhill lanes could have a low barrier instead of parked cars. Or perhaps a combination as seems fit.

      The truth is, there are a lot of people out there who simply do not like to ride in traffic, even downhill. Many people do not want to “keep up with traffic,” and we should never design our streets in a way that pressure people to travel faster than they feel comfortable going. The bike lane up/sharrow down combo is OK, and it’s an improvement over a road with nothing. But that design is getting old, and we need to be looking for next generation designs. Neighborhood greenways are often going to be the best solutions (especially in less central neighborhoods). But for routes like these, we are probably going to need a different solution. I would love to see the city get started on those ideas and experimenting with safer downhill facilities.

      I am also open to the idea that a safe downhill facility may, indeed, involve efforts to (safely) slow bicycle traffic.

      • Morgan Wick says:

        Maybe we should just get rid of parking on one side of Pine.

      • doug in seattle says:

        Perhaps some day they can build a pedestrain/bicycle viaduct connecting downtown and Capitol Hill/First Hill over I5.

        I often wish there was one between Wallingford and the UDistrict (a frequent trip for me) and much to my delight I found there is one planned (who knows when it will be reality, though!). It really is shocking what a massive obstacle I5 is for the 20 miles it intersects our city. Hard to imagine they wanted to put even more freeways in!

      • Tom Fucoloro says:

        Agreed, Doug.

        As for the U District/Wallingord one: I don’t think it’s needed. The 45th St bridge is SIX lanes. The north lane is basically useless, since that lane ends just a few blocks later anyway without really any major-traffic right turns. I say they put up a barrier and make that lane a two-way bicycle lane. They could put the section of 45th btwn the bridge and Latona on a road diet while they’re at it, maybe extending that two-way bike facility all the way. Then that would make connections to 5th, Latona and Thackary as well as provide a connection to the 44th st neighborhood greenway. Since 47th is a good candidate for a u district greenway, it would also help make that connection.

        I’ve thought about this one a lot. I think we can save the money on that bike/ped bridge. There are crossings at 40th and 45th that could be improved. There are places in the city that need expensive bridges far more (BALLARD BRIDGE!!!!!)

      • David says:

        Tom,

        I tend to disagree about the 47th bridge. Anything that changes the roadway configuration on 45th to facilitate better bicycle access is going to require significant trade-offs on the bridge, sure. But it’s ALSO going to necessitate expensive solutions – both in terms of hardscape improvements and signal changes – on either side of I-5. Basically, I don’t think there’s a cheap solution out there that does a comprehensive job of fixing bicycle access on that stretch of 45th.

        Also, a bike/ped bridge at 47th is a looong-term infrastructure investment. Who’s to say that by the time it’s built there won’t also be a greenway extending west of I-5 along 47th? Would it make sense for someone coming from the U-District to travel west on 47th, then jog down to 45th to cross I-5, only to jog BACK up to 47th to continue west on a low-stress route?

  6. Brian says:

    The uphill/downhill issue is a real challenge on a lot of Seattle streets. Where I face it is on Queen Anne Ave (S of Mercer). There is a bike lane for that stretch, but the bike lane is like a long braid of tire-swallowing cracks in the pavement. If I’m in it, I have to focus all my attention on keeping my front tire out of the wide cracks, with little to no attention to the countless people swinging their doors open to get into Starbucks and the gym and whipping their cars out of the parking spaces (coffee and phone in hand). That bike lane is a deathtrap. But since the road is downhill I just take the lane, to the occasional ire of car drivers.
    In my opinion, the solution to part of the problem is a bike lane uphill, sharrows downhill (along with some education to drivers about what sharrows mean). Of course, that doesn’t address the dangerous intersection problem, except that it gets the cyclists out into the middle of the vehicle lane where most car drivers should be looking for vehicles anyway. It’s a tough nut to crack, for sure.

    • David says:

      I think the solution would be to eliminate or place hour restrictions on parking in the downhill direction. If there’s no parking, then riding downhill in a bike lane isn’t a problem because you don’t need to look out for opening car doors.

      Sharrows in the downhill direction may take you out of the door zone, but they still force you to ride faster than many people would prefer just to try to keep up with car traffic, and they certainly aren’t going to attract many new riders.

    • ODB says:

      I completely agree with Brian’s comments re Queen Anne Ave. That used to be my morning commute route and after a few close calls, including a large truck door that flew open at head level, I also ended up taking the lane as a matter of course. Interestingly, that section had sharrows for a short period, but then was switched back to a bike lane. I preferred the sharrows, but probably slower or less confident riders prefer the current configuration. I appreciate SDOT’s efforts to try different things–you can’t please everyone.

  7. Lisa says:

    I prefer sharrows downhill as well. However, I think a better solution would be the neighborhood greenways concept, as sharrows will still scare people who aren’t very confident about biking. But on cap hill, there aren’t many non-commercial streets. Denny, once construction is finished, perhaps?

    • David says:

      I’d love to see a network of family-friendly neighborhood greenways in Capitol Hill, but we also need safe, comfortable, and direct facilities on our main streets. Corridors like Pike/Pine, Broadway, 19th, 15th, and 12th are home to TONS of destinations that people want to go to, and we ought to be providing high-quality facilities that encourage people to do so by bike.

    • Another David says:

      On that note, I think sharrows would be a lot less scary if they weren’t something that was pretty much just made up. They don’t appear in any driver’s manual (that I’ve seen). The way they’re drawn, they look like they are meant to say that bikes are to ride where the sharrows are and not where they aren’t. What a mess.

  8. merlin says:

    These comments mesh with some thoughts I’ve had about the challenges our hills pose. I had focused mainly on the problem of creating a vibrant, all-ages, all-abilities bike environment when there are many people who just won’t be willing to tackle the uphill grades. I’m 65 myself – how long will I be able to pedal up Denny or the north side of Capitol Hill? Are electric assist bikes the answer?
    But the comments focus on the opposite problem – what if we do successfully entice the slow segments of the populations onto bikes – and we have crowds of families with kids in tow and old ladies like me slowly trudging up the hills – What happens on the downhill side? There are still going to be young speedsters who love to feel the wind in their hair.
    Our transportation planners have gone to Copenhagen and fallen in love with the peaceful world of all-ages biking there. I agree we have much to learn from Copenhagen. But has anyone studied other successful biking cities with hills? How do you accommodate the very slow, the slow and the fast with challenging topography? Thanks for all your stimulating comments. Anyone go to Velo-City 2011 in Seville?

  9. Clark in Vancouver says:

    One way to have bikes at different speeds on the same lane is to make the lane wide enough to allow passing. (This can even happen on a two-way separated path.)
    If there will be a new bridge in the future it could be made very gradual by going diagonally across the I-5 or even have switchbacks on the low side to get up to the height.
    I think it’s always tough to have buses and bikes on the same street. If you’re going to pick a street to go up the hill then choose one the buses don’t go up.
    Olive seems as gradual as any there. Madison might be a good one to choose too. Just have special signals at Broadway and 12th.
    Also have education campaigns so everybody knows what to do there.
    The first couple weeks when the separated lanes went in in Vancouver, BC, they had hired traffic control flaggers who cheerfully showed everybody how the new lights worked. It took a little while for everybody to get used to them but they now have.
    I think somebody needs to invent a symbol or graphic to indicate a delayed or a separate turn light. Pictures are faster than words for the brain to register.
    For Broadway having a separated lane on each side with car parking outside of that would be marvy. The two successful separated lanes in Vancouver, BC are both on one-way streets. The bike lanes are two-way. One way that they’ve dealt with turning conflicts was to have an advance turn signal for cars, separate from a turn signal for bikes. On some streets they’ve disallowed right turns but many cars just turn anyway illegally so they, in my opinion should just put in advanced turn signals there instead.

  10. Sean says:

    I think Lisa and Brian are onto something with the “sharrows downhill” concept. The reality is, unless the cyclist is to ride the brakes and go “copenhagen slow” you simply do not have the sightlines you need to avoid cars pulling out in front of you (the “right cross” in particular http://bicyclesafe.com/) and to do things like stop for pedestrians in the crosswalk (how can you stop for someone you simply cannot see until you are on top of them?)–when bound to the curb and/or line of parked cars in a bike lane at speed. I don’t think “bombing” is the right euphamism for a cyclist that simply wants to ride up to the posted speed limit (sorry CBC/Ms. Panniers–I don’t think riding subjectively slow is required “etiquette” if otherwise following the law–and giving your fellow cyclists plenty of warning and space–!bells anyone?)–if they so choose [If the speed limit isn't a safe speed for all traffic, it should be lowered.]

    As Lisa and Brian pointed out (and Merlin in a way) I very much agree that greenways are a great idea where available for the more inexperienced /more comfortable at going slower (or for me when cycling with my kids or a trailer loaded with hundreds of pounds of grocieres for example) so we have a variety of facilities available for all ability levels.

    Lastly, in my commute to work I’m a little puzzled as to how the new dexter design will pan out on downhill sections. Going the speed I used to on the road–in the lane on downhills–is likely too fast for the new facilities given that bus riders need to cross the bike lane in a number of locations without a lot of warning, etc. Another example of a puzzling/speed limiting downhill bike lane [where a sharrow would have been a far better choice] is the section of NW 32nd just n. of the locks. Hugging the lane without going dead slow is just a recipe for problems created by limited sightlines and reduced visibility of the cyclist.

    Lanes up, sharrows down, plus greenways to accommodate a wider range of cyclist speeds and abilities would seem a better acknowledgement that one size does not fit all in this hilly city.

  11. Clark in Vancouver says:

    I agree with Sean. There needs to be more than one way to get up that hill. Both for reasons of what destination you’re going to but also for different types of biking and what the existing road is like.
    There should be at least one separated path but all of the bridges should have a lane at least. (If they’re not wide enough then the deck could be widened someday.)
    Then people can choose the one they like best. The same with the streets. It’ll depend on how the street is what cycling infrastructure gets put on it.
    One thing to note though is when introducing a new element in a city, to choose it wisely and have it be good quality. Then it’ll get used as well as you can show the detractors that it’s working well. It’s easy to just accept what crumbs they hand you and to feel it’s progress but it might be self defeating in the long run.

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