Bike News Roundup: Tacoma has reached Kidical Mass

It’s time for the Bike News Roundup! It’s been a while, so it’s a long one.

First up, Kidical Mass in Tacoma is awesome and adorable.

Pacific Northwest News

Halftime show! Parking craters are awful and destroy American city centers.

Parking Craters: Scourge of American Downtowns from STREETFILMS on Vimeo.

National & Global News

This is an open thread.

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4 Responses to Bike News Roundup: Tacoma has reached Kidical Mass

  1. Jake says:

    I was riding through SODO earlier this week, and thought about how awesome an elevated bikeway would be there: cars get the Spokane St. Viaduct; why not an elevated bikeway across the area as well? It could connect the end of the mountains to sound trail with the E. Marginal bikeway to the west, with no trains or traffic in the way.

    I know. Cool idea, but totally unrealistic. It would probably cost the equivalent of a couple weeks of taking care of the stalled TBM. But I can dream, can’t I?

    By the way – thanks for linking to my bike stats article, Tom! I thought it was pretty funny that we posted basically the same thing on the same day…

  2. jay says:

    jeeze Tom, don’t you have anything better to do? I just don’t know where to start, well, open with a joke.;
    This is from some movie I halfway watched once; “What do you call 1000 lawyers lying dead on the bottom of the ocean?”
    School zone sign too long? how about:
    “School Zone 20”
    Period. Full stop. 24/356, since ideally schools will be in reasonable proximity to places where children live 24/356, oh, might change that 20 to 15 as well.

    Very specifically, a “motorcycle” may go through a red light if the sensor doesn’t detect them, but the bicyclist must sit there and rot? WTF! Since state law requires vehicle detectors to detect bicycles (and motorcycles) , I used to assume that if one didn’t, it was “not working” (lawfully anyway) and this section from the state drives manual would apply; “If a traffic signal is not working, come to a complete stop, then yield to traffic as if it were a four-way stop”, but actually the law (RCW 46.61.183) reads: ” traffic control signal that is temporarily without power on all approaches or is not displaying any green, red, or yellow indication to the approach the vehicle is on”. Well, that does explain the need for the new law, but again, WTF! specifically “Motorcycles” implying NOT non-motorized bicycles ?!

    While looking up the law, if found something interesting, while I used to think the stop signs at cross walks on the Burke Gillman were a ridiculous cause of confusion because pedestrians (yes, on the trail pedestrians have to stop at the stop sign too) have the right of way upon a cross walk., so stop sign at a marked cross walk seems absurd. But that “upon” (RCW 46.61.235) is the key, if you are just approaching, but not “upon” the crosswalk you don’t have the right of way. Still a cause of confusion though, car drivers see a marked crosswalk, a big yellow caution sign showing pedestrians and bicyclists but hey, you don’t have to stop (unless your direction of travel just got a new stop sign)

    “lies, damn lies and statistics” I see you linked to the rebuttal of the “bike share associated with increased percentage of head injuries” , but even that seemed a bit light on objective data. I’m more interested in what the motivation was for the first study, the authors (local people BTW) essentially said something to the effect; “we had an idea and found data to support it” Why would you even do that?
    And to close with a joke:

  3. Josh says:

    Amusing but not surprising to see Seattle lose a case over lax MUTCD compliance. SDOT seems to consider a lot of MUTCD standards advisory at best.

    The wording of a sign may seem like a silly, nitpicky challenge, but the whole point of having a uniform national standard is to make it easier for all road users to comply with the law. When one city chooses to ignore the standard, safety behavior that’s normally automatic requires conscious thought. That slows down reaction times and reduces compliance.

    What if a city thought red was ugly, and made all their STOP signs orange instead? Same shape, same words, but not the same sign. Drivers would need more time to identify the sign and comply with it.

    At least for bicycle facilities, SDOT is supposed to be taking safety standards more seriously now; the BMP Update included a mandate that all BMP facilities comply with national, state, and local safety standards and guidelines. That would be quite a departure for SDOT.

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