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.
Circulating People | Ottawa Bicycle Lanes Project from Ottawa Bicycle Lanes Project on Vimeo.
Pacific Northwest News
- The taxpayers on two wheels| Wenatchee World
- Health in Action: Seattle Bike Blog’s Tom Fucoloro – Hey, that’s me!
- Short on corporate cash, Puget Sound Bike Share faces uphill ride to Capitol Hill | CHS Capitol Hill Seattle
- Body found near Aberdeen believed to be hit-and-run victim | KING5.com Seattle
- Vancouver, Wash., woman live tweets about fatal crash, learns it’s her husband | The Today File | Seattle Times – Awful.
- Bike ride to Ballard locks to watch parade of holiday boats | Hub and Bespoke Blog
- Two kids struck by car while crossing Beacon Hill Drive
- Bike-friendly business highlight: the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation | Cascade Bicycle Club
- Man charged with murder of woman found near Burke-Gilman Trail | The Today File | Seattle Times
- Morning Fizz: Sawant Won Because… | Seattle Met
- Seattle Cranksgiving 2013 – Family style | Family Ride
- Conduit Coffee: Delivering Coffee by Bike | GO MEANS GO
- WSDOT – 2013 Corridor Capacity Report – Note that they’ve changed the name of the annual report from “Congestion Report.” Is this a sign the State DOT might focus more on moving people and goods in many ways rather than just focusing on moving vehicles?
- Tacoma Seeks Student Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisor – City of Tacoma
- How much auto parking do we need? City of Portland looks long-term | BikePortland.org
Halftime show! Check out this video from Obliteride (registration for the 2014 ride opens January 6):
National & Global News
- Mayor of Small Town: Kids Not Allowed to Bike on Streets Here : Free Range Kids
- U.S. traffic deaths up for first time since 2005, safety agency says – latimes.com
- Delaware Drops “Share the Road” | Streetsblog.net
- Shifting Gears: Commuting Aboard The L.A. Bike Trains : NPR
- Bike blog: London – no city for cyclists | Peter Walker | theguardian.com
- Activists Take Brooklyn Speed Limit Into Own Hands, Install 20mph Signs in Park Slope – WNYC
- The U.S. cities leading the decline in driving | Grist
- Citing nonexistent policy, Amtrak workers haul away Portlanders’ bikes – UPDATED | BikePortland.org
- Finally, a Bicycle Ad That’s as Sexy as One for a Car – Sarah Goodyear – The Atlantic Cities
- ‘Fast & Furious’ star Paul Walker dies in crash
- Dad Arrested For Picking Up Kids At School By Foot ← The Urban Country
- St. Louis County Council puts Complete Streets legislation on hold : News
10 responses to “Bike News Roundup: If the city were a heart, and the streets its arteries…”
I wouldn’t wanna stoke a war of any kind – heavens, no! – but, that title just makes me think of this.
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.
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.
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.
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”…
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?
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.
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.
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.
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.