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Bike News Roundup: If the city were a heart, and the streets its arteries…

It’s time for the Bike News Roundup, our recurring collection of transportation news in the region and around the globe.

As always, this is an open thread.

First up, here’s a video from Ottawa imaging the city as a heart, major streets as arteries, and people as blood.

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Circulating People | Ottawa Bicycle Lanes Project from Ottawa Bicycle Lanes Project on Vimeo.

Pacific Northwest News

Halftime show! Check out this video from Obliteride (registration for the 2014 ride opens January 6):

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10 responses to “Bike News Roundup: If the city were a heart, and the streets its arteries…”

  1. I wouldn’t wanna stoke a war of any kind – heavens, no! – but, that title just makes me think of this.

  2. Matthew Snyder

    I wonder if Seattle has any “activist-installed” speed limit signs. The only ones I can think of are on the Burke-Gilman trail just west of Stone Way (in front of the coffee place and hair salon). Someone installed “Speed limit 5 mph” signs there a few months ago — probably the business owners. I guess that’s a little different than putting them on a street, though.

    1. Gary

      There are “activist” No parking signs… to keep the homeless from parking on some streets.


      We don’t really want to encourge this as motorists could put up 45MPH signs and make the roads more dangerous for us.

      1. Jane

        Interesting idea, but it’s pretty obvious that people who drive so much that they would want to adjust the speed limit upward are far too lazy to get out of the car and put up a sign.

  3. Gary

    On the Amtrak folding bike issue, if they had a bike bag it would have been totally ignored. Just a light weight nylon bag of “sports equipment”…

  4. Leif Espelund

    From the article about kids getting hit while trying to board the school bus (emphasis mine): “Washington drivers traveling in the same direction as a school bus must stop when the stop “paddle” is extended and its red lights are flashing. Drivers traveling in the opposite direction — the case Tuesday morning — must stop on two-lane roads but not if the roadway has three or more lanes, including turn lanes.

    How does that make any sense? As the road gets more dangerous the rules are relaxed?

    1. Tom Fucoloro

      Weird, right?

      Related: Most street corners are legal crosswalk, whether there is a painted zebra stripe or not. http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=46.61.235

      So the law is basically saying that when school kids are let out on a dangerous, wide street, we don’t even want people to try to follow the law and stop for them at unmarked crosswalks. It’s an example of how incompatible highway-style streets are with everyday neighborhood life.

      1. Leif Espelund

        Seattle drivers are almost universally unaware that peds usually have the right of way where two streets cross each other. Hell, lots of drivers ignore ped right of way at marked crosswalks. I really think SDOT and SPD need to do a huge education and enforcement push around this.

      2. Tom Fucoloro

        In some ways, I’m conflicted about promoting that law. After all, telling people to cross where it is legal, but not safe, might not be a great idea. It is, however, a great reason to redesign streets so they are safer.

        If we were going to take back the “every corner is a crosswalk” law, then it would have to be a seriously huge education campaign. There’s a lot of misinformation to correct, and the message would have to reach essentially everyone. If I were to guess, I would say that fewer than 5-10 percent of people even know its already the law. That’s not an easy feat. I would certainly support that effort if it got rolling, but I bet it would be more effective to spend that money on road diets and other low-cost engineering changes.

      3. Jane

        It would have to be a two-pronged educational campaign- Intersections are crosswalks for pedestrians, but if I’m on my bike stopped at a stop sign and you don’t have a stop sign, don’t stop and wave me through as though I need your help to operate my vehicle properly.

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