Monday, August 27, 2012

Bike Lanes

    Our small city (100 000) has just set up a major system of bike lanes. So bike lanes are a system which puts in a special part of the road for bicycles. Various forms of bike lanes are set up in many cities.
Start of a bike lane

    The purpose of bike lanes is to allow people to ride downtown to their work. The idea is to get people to exercise more and to cut down on the number of cars polluting the atmosphere. They would also like to save some money on roads because with less cars there would be less upkeep for roads. With less vehicles there could be fewer big roads needed.
Typical bike lane

    There was some discussion about the bike lanes. Avid cyclists were involved in setting up the system. I paid some attention but not much because I don't intend to use bike lanes. I use bike trails which take you from one park location to another.

    When the city actually started painting the lines on the roads many people said, "Whoa! Wait a minute! What's going on here?" 

    Major traffic changes were taking place. Four lane roads were becoming two lane roads. Bike lanes started and ended no where. Some bike lanes were on the left of parked cars and squeezed in beside the traffic. Most of the bike lanes are one meter wide. Some bike lanes were put in rather puzzling places. My question is what happens in the winter when snow and ice cover most of the lane markers?  People do ride bikes in the winter with the new technology .

    So I wish I had paid more attention to the bike lane proposals. I want to see more safety and space for bikes. On the other hand vehicle traffic seems to be altered so that it may create traffic jams. 

    We will just have to wait and see how things turn out. There are many cities with a similar system that works well. I hope ours works well.

31 comments:

  1. Holy catfish!
    Bike-lanes. The scourge of Sydney's CBD, courtesy of a Lord Mayor who is "potty"!
    Thank God the lord mayorial role in Sydney is just the CBD.
    Here in Brisbane, some clown came up with similar ideas, so there are bikes for hire from one end of the CBD to the other for?? - yep Overseas Tourists/Interstate visitors to use!!! The bikes seem to be never used, just stand there, chained to poles which you deposit coins into for usage.
    Tourists and interstaters have enough trouble walking with maps to get around, letting them loose on bikes with maps equals disaster.
    There are bike paths here along the riverside and across the river - bikes only and that works! Where the cars and the bikes converge, well in simple terms they do not mix! Road rage! The cars win!
    In Copenhagen and Amsterdam, the people have always ridden bikes, cars in the their CBD and built up areas are not as common as in the counterparts of Australia, Canada or the USA!
    If we, of great enterprise had plans A to E for the exportation of bunnies, leverets, moose, elk and rhubarb, the authorities of your city will require plans A to Z and then A1 etc.
    Good luck.
    Yep quite a good point re: snow and ice. Maybe the bikes lanes will have underneath heating???????
    Cheers
    Colin (Brisbane.Australia)

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    1. Something to encourage cycling and discourage unnecessary car travel need sot be done.

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  2. Watch yourself. We have had them here for years. Here we mix walkers and bikes. It's lethal.

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    1. This one is to separate walkers and bikers.

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  3. Unfortunately for the bikers, drivers are frequently rude and inconsiderate, causing dangerous conditions for the bikes. I always worry about them on the road...they are simply no match for the big, powerful cars!

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    1. I quit riding on roads about 15 years ago. Drivers had the idea that I shouldn't be there.

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  4. We have bike lanes that I notice now that I have a bike. Some are like you said in your town: they start and stop in the most inconvenient places. I've learned what streets I cannot ride my bike on safely. Getting to town is easy, and all the parks are accessible. They are a good idea, I think.

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    1. It's good to hear about your bike lanes . I'm sure these will need some adjusting. So far not too many complaints from drivers.

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  5. I laughed when I was in Europe experiencing these for a first time.I would be standing in them shooting a pic and have someone growl when they had to slow for me often.

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    1. Yes, when they say bikes only they mean bikes only. That's what it's going to be here.

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  6. It is a good idea and I am all for helping those stay healthy. We just need to drive more carefully.

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    1. You've got that right. Drivers need to show much more courtesy.

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  7. I would hope that with all that planning behind it, they know what they're doing. I like the idea of a city accommodating bikes.

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    1. I think this will likely need some tweaking but I hope it catches on. The thing I grump about is that there's not place to put your bike downtown. Some bike lockers would be very nice.

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  8. i'd imagine you'd get more snow than we do here in texas, so wintertime might be rather wasteful of that designated space. you'll have to keep us updated.

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    1. It will be interesting. However , many people are riding bikes through the winter.

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  9. We have bike lanes here...I'm rather for them otherwise everyone rides in the middle of the roads. I think it keeps everyone safe.


    Linda
    http://coloradofarmlife.wordpress.com
    http://deltacountyhistoricalsociety.wordpress.com

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    1. Good to hear about your bike lanes.

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  10. Hopefully the lanes swill work out for everyone. I can sse that the winter road conditions may make some changes necessary.

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  11. I think Bike Lanes are a great thing. One takes their life in their hands here, when out on a bike. You are not allowed to bike on the sidewalk, yet expected to fit into curb side of traffic, with some wild cracks and holes in pavement, which only adds to the danger of bicycling in town. There is barely enough room on road for vehicles, let alone the bikes here. We do not have to worry about winter, as there is too much ice n snow (usually) to be biking. Very interesting post Red - you do come up with the neatest stuff on yer blog. Have a great day.

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    1. The road surface here is also dangerous. the avid bike riders do ride all winter and there's more every winter.

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  12. Whilst I do agree with the idea of bike lanes, what I hate is the dreadful painting of white bikes and dotted lines all over the road. Surely such dreadful graphics don't have to be repeated every twenty yards like they do over here - and it would appear, over there as well.

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  13. I would LOVE a bike lane. We live in the hilly back roads and riding a bike is dangerous and unpredictable. I do not think there is enough interest in our area though to warrant actual lanes.

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    1. there's been lobbying for lanes for quite a few years. We have a major bike trail system so it's only natural for the move to include bike lanes.

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  14. I am so tired of cyclists, Red.
    I'm going to a meeting tonight. We have ecotours, with 1500 cyclists, I'm sure you read my blog post about it. It is dangerous. No one respects the rules of the road.
    It doesn't bring tourist dollars to our towns, as they run a huge route, and don't stop her. Dread them!

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    1. This is sad for cycling. In so many ways cyclists are well behaved but I have seen the top riders and they seem to think they own everything.

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  15. I am tired of people on bikes. We have a dedicated bike lane in town..bikers do not stop for stop signs. At the stop lights you have to keep checking your right mirror when you are turning just in case a biker is going straight. I would stick to the bike trails..and forget the bike lanes. Too dangerous..several bikers have been injured in town. I often encounter bikers on the way home..on a two lane tar road..one day five of them were taking up all the lanes..sadly I do not think much of bike riders:(

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  16. I just returned from Arlington, Va where I visited my son. I saw some bike lanes marked much like the ones you show.
    My daughter-in-law works in downtown DC and as driving and parking into that city is a hassle she rides her bike to the metro. It's about a twenty minute ride.
    Biking is definitely a cheaper way to get around.

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  17. In my opinion it is a good idea to separate the road visibly and show where cars and bikes should go. But people should be encouraged not only to use bicycles more but also to know traffic rules and follow them and wear a crash helmet. All this would help as not only cars can be dangerous. I'm not that sure about narrowing the four lane roads into two lane roads, won't it result in traffic congestions?

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  18. There are bike lanes in Ottawa and they seem to work okay in winter. Too bad more cyclists (and more motorists and pedestrians!!) don't abide by traffic laws.

    I would never ride a bike in the city, as I'm too terrified of being killed by a motorist, but I like to see safe cycling being encouraged. I'm still not sure how I feel about bike lanes.

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