Today, Bike Portland takes a look at their year-old cycle track on their Broadway. Initial reports are mostly positive, though there do seem to be some concerns from pedestrians:
Reached this morning in his office, Monsere said the evaluation is primarily survey-based. They’ve been asking people who drive, walk, and bike on Broadway a series of questions about it. Monsere is still tabulating results, but says one thing that’s “jumped out” has been concerns from people trying to walk across the cycle track. “From the pedestrian survey, I noticed mentions of cyclists not stopping at the red light.” (Note that these are T-bone intersections without motor vehicle cross-traffic.)
Now, there are some big differences between Portland’s cycle track and the one proposed in Seattle. For one, Portland’s track runs next to Portland State University, so there are limited cross streets. It is also a one-way cycle track on a one-way street, and it is only eight blocks long.
Seattle’s proposed cycle track will be two-way and will cross several busy streets. If we can learn anything from Portland’s experience, it seems SDOT may need to pay extra attention to ensuring pedestrian safety and ensuring that bikes can clearly see all traffic signals. This may require installing bike-specific signals if necessary. Seattle will also have to figure out how to ensure cyclist safety from right-turning cars. This may require restricting right turns at many intersections, as Vancouver has done with their cycle track on Dunsmuir.
Has anyone had a chance to try out Portland’s cycle track?