This video demonstrating the two-way cycle track on Dunsmuir in Vancouver has come up often lately. In many ways, it is similar to the cycle track proposed for Broadway (and perhaps Yesler) to coincide with the installation of the First Hill Streetcar.
However, there are some key differences. Dunsmuir is one-way, and it does not have a streetcar. One of the main safety changes made, as shown in the Dunsmuir video, is that cars are not allowed to turn across the cycle track at many intersections.
Are we willing to do that to Broadway? Current plans show only a few intersections that do not have a left-turn lane. Will a turning vehicle be able to see cyclists traveling in two different directions clearly enough, or should these turns be restricted? And if restricting those turns would create too much havoc on the streets, we may need to look for more drastic measures to make sure the cycle track is safe.
We need to keep methods other than the cycle track on the table in case safety issues cannot be mitigated sufficiently. A cycle track is an exciting opportunity to increase the popularity and comfort of biking down Broadway. But the worst thing we can do is build an unsafe bicycle facility.
One response to “Cycle Tracks and Seattle, Part 2: Look, the Canucks can do it, too!”
It is ridiculous that SDOT puts such a high priority on street parking. Shouldn’t vehicle throughput (yes bikes are vehicles) be the priority? Remove the parking from just one side of the street and suddenly there is room for everything! Portland does it. Fauntleroy Way SW near my shop was just Sharrow-ified. I have never seen the street parking full to capacity. The center turn lane is hardly ever used (except for illegal passing). It was supposed to have bike lanes both ways, but they measured wrong. Now it has narrow bike lanes in the door zone!