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  1.  

    C Monroe

    First can we stop calling Arlington a suburb. It was originally to be a part of DC and it is basically part of the urban center of the metro area.

    Take a look at Southfield, MI an inner ring suburb of Detroit. It has served as the thriving alternative to Downtown and midtown Detroit for being the central office district of the metro region. The last few years though many of the office towers are being abandoned for new remoldeled digs in downtown and midtown Detroit. There has even been an building implosion of an office tower in the last few months.

  2.  

    junglecat64

    The people of Nashville are the winners, not the Koch brothers. The Amp was a turkey that deserved to die.

  3.  

    Fakey McFakename

    Yes! This is the biggest barrier to sustainable development today. If you can’t build at the densities necessary for transit and walkability, you can’t solve sprawl.

  4.  

    Fakey McFakename

    Actually, the SFV is a great example of maturing suburbia–even the older construction is still fairly dense, unlike the uber-sprawl of exurban Atlanta and Dallas. Even places like Santa Clarita and the Antelope Valley are built more densely than suburbs in the South.

  5.  

    Tom Radulovich

    There can be a certain arbitrariness in the suburban/urban designation. I grew up in the San Fernando Valley. It’s quintessentially suburban, but was part of the City of Los Angeles, so part of the ‘central city’. The San Gabriel Valley east of Los Angeles is similar in character and built form to the San Fernando Valley, but because it is divided into two dozen smaller cities it’s generally considered the suburbs. In both valleys, much of the new infill is attached houses and apartments, and considerably denser than what surrounds it.

    I wonder if there’s a practical way of quantifying housing growth by either the built character of the new housing (walkable urban vs. drivable suburban), perhaps using a proxy like density or Walk Score value, rather than just the polity in which it is located.

  6.  

    bryan

    do YOU understand the driving laws in canada?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Speed_limits_in_Canada

    it doesnt say anything about “10km above the maximum legal speed is somehow legal if you killed someone”

  7.  

    Gezellig

    Mopeds sharing the path is one area in which I strongly disagree with Dutch policy–it can create a fair number of problems such as that (it’s been debated off and on for years in the NL). There is actually a fairly complex set of rules there about when mopeds are required/optional/not allowed on paths (there are also distinctions between mopeds of small engine size vs. larger ones).

    But in any case, a few things to keep in mind:

    1) Shared bicycle/moped paths are thankfully unlikely to happen in the US.

    2) Mopeds are less common in the US anyway

    3) Personally, I’d rather negotiate space with other people on bicycles than people in trucks and speeding cars whose mass and possible inertia/speed far exceed my own.

    4) In practice, passing is usually a non-issue. Both because the paths are wide enough and people on bikes are far better at negotiating space with each other than cars are.

    5) Notice how comparatively rare this obviously speedier bicyclist encounters people to pass in the first place, and this is in a country where most areas have bike modeshare far above 25% (the highest that any US community has achieved). For an example of what 25% bike modeshare looks like with this kind of infrastructure, a video of what it looks like biking around central Rotterdam (which has about 25% bike modeshare):

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQyea9aqbcQ

    In practice, it’s just not a big problem.

    6) Data. Remember the Netherlands has both the highest overall bike modeshare rates and lowest overall injury rates. If this kind of pervasive infrastructure were truly dangerous, we should be seeing a lot more injuries there than we do. But actually, it’s the current infrastructure status quo in the US that’s dangerous–per person per kilometer traveled you’re 3x likelier to die on a bicycle in the US than in the Netherlands:

    http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/461679_4

    Non-fatal injuries are also much higher in the US.

  8.  

    Andy

    Yikes. That is some tight passing, especially with mopeds sharing the path. This is what I should be looking forward to? I would definitely be taking the road instead of risking these situations.

  9.  

    Joe R.

    Gezellig answered my question but the bottom line is any decent bike infrastructure should have room for safe passing. All cyclists ride at different speeds. I don’t think a 13 mph cyclist wants to be stuck behind a granny going 8 mph any more than a VC wants to be stuck behind that 13 mph cyclist. In truth, the differential in bike speeds from fastest to slowest is small enough that all you need to accommodate it is room for safe passing. It’s not like you’ll ever have someone going 50 mph passing someone going 8 mph.

    On another note, if/when velomobiles become much more popular, and depending upon what speeds they’re capable of, you may indeed in the future want something separate for them (or maybe not if they can keep up with motor traffic). That said, I’ll note that velomobiles seem to have no issues on Dutch bike paths, even when ridden at 60+ kph. So long as there’s room for safe passing, and good lines of sight so you can see people you’re coming up on well in advance, I think we can even accommodate velomobile speeds without any major issues (except maybe on some very crowded urban paths).

  10.  

    Jonathan Krall

    I think we’d both agree that there is a big difference between infill suburban development and greenfield suburban development. The last thing I want to see is suburban retrofitting and urbanization be mistaken for renewed sprawl. Instead of “suburbs are dying” it may be “suburbs are urbanizing.”

    Perhaps suburban land area would be a better measure of suburban growth than suburban population.

  11.  

    Bolwerk

    Zoning laws in much of the USA still de facto restrict or ban infill. Until that changes, there really is nowhere to go but out.

  12.  

    Angie Schmitt

    I have to say, I have always thought this “suburbs are dying” idea didn’t really apply to Cleveland, where I live. The city and inner ring suburbs here are still losing population fast. The good news is, I guess, greenfield housing sprawl has probably slowed to a trickle (not job sprawl though), and infill development has picked up again. So things have changed some, but the suburbs are a long way from dying here. The opposite is more true.

  13.  

    Ben

    America, where money trumps all. Land of the free.

  14.  

    Marc Dreyfuss

    You do know that rapid transit and bikes are different things, right? As for San Francisco, if you lived there, your house would be worth a hell of a lot more, so maybe they’re on to something.

  15.  

    Gezellig

    And for an example of passing on a one-way cycletrack:

    http://youtu.be/WpU43nk0pB4?t=3m5s

  16.  

    Gezellig

  17.  

    Miles Bader

    Wait, so what happens when you have a VC doing 25mph in the same bike lane as the much greater number of grannies and duffers doing 10mph…? Are you advocating multiple bike lanes (I think it’d be great but probably not happening anytime soon)?

  18.  

    ohnonononono

    What are good examples of BRT lines in the US that use signal priority well? It still seems to be some abstract concept that is forgotten and downplayed in actual implementation once service begins.

  19.  

    Marven Norman

    Yep, that’s a problem I’m very familiar with. Here in SoCal, we might get a stripe of paint next to a 6-lane arterial. Needless to say, no kids can be seen there and even almost all the adults are on the sidewalk. Even in new projects. These places are prime examples of where a protected bikeway would be an ideal treatment, especially with the purer adherence to corridor access management, which keeps potential “conflicts” to a minimum and controlled. But even many of the older ones have plenty of space to also do bikeways properly. That’s the message here: there’s space and an ideal situation, so let’s get this done.

  20.  

    Joe R.

    Apples and oranges. The fastest vehicular cyclists still generally go much slower than motor traffic, certainly much, much slower than the type of drivers you’re describing who want to go 100+ mph all the time. To me it’s more a case of a double standard. We might design a street for motor vehicles to go 30 mph, then we design so cyclists can only go 12 mph of the part of the street designed for them. If we want to avoid public relations disasters like having VCs ride in the street when there’s parallel bike infrastructure, then that infrastructure should be designed to be used at up the same speed as the parallel motor traffic lanes.

    A secondary issue is it’s not that much harder to design infrastructure which is satisfactory to most VCs compared to substandard infrastructure. Often the only differences might be barriers to prevent pedestrians from walking in the bike lane and the avoidance of tight turns. In other cases you might need to make the path a bit wider to allow safe passing.

    So, no, vehicular cyclists don’t have an absolute right to cycle faster than 99% of other cyclists, and demand also that road traffic let them have priority anywhere.

    Actually, cyclists of any speed should have priority over motor traffic. It’s much easier for a motor vehicle to get going again than it is for a cyclist.

  21.  

    Anthony Redington

    More bicycling and walking equals more walking and cycling deaths–no way around it. Nations with developed walk/bike infrastructure (namely cycle track and roundabouts) record fatality rates PER MILE OF TRAVEL about a third of the U.S. (Pucher, Rutgers). The lack of roundabouts and cycle track here does not lend itself to headlong promotion of cycling, it calls for headlong jumping into cycle track and roundabouts. NACTO guidelines are just paper–it is what is on the ground that counts–and Mayor Diblasio’s “0 Roundabout” policy suggests he still does not “get it.” Tony Redington Blog: TonyRVT.blogspot.com

  22.  

    Kevin Love

    Yes, NACTO gives “dangerous by design” infrastructure. In my opinion, the most incompetent part of the NACTO design manual is where they put cycle lanes in the door zone of adjacent parked cars. So that the most dangerous place on the entire road to ride a bike is in the bicycle lane!

    The Dutch CROW bicycle traffic design engineering standards explicitly discourage (“expliciet ontraden”) putting a bike lane next to parked cars. Where this absolutely must happen, there is a minimum buffer of 0.75 metres between the car parking and bike lane to protect people from the door zone. See:

    http://www.fietsberaad.nl/library/repository/bestanden/document000161.pdf

  23.  

    Kevin Love

    I 100% agree. Let’s show good bike infra, not dangerous crap. Good infra that looks like this:

    https://bicycledutch.wordpress.com/2011/09/08/cycling-to-school/

    Or like this… note that even the “old, inferior” cycle infra is far, far better than the crap we normally get:

    http://www.aviewfromthecyclepath.com/2014/02/cycling-infrastructure-is-cheaper-to.html

    Or the infra for an urban shopping street like this:

    https://bicycledutch.wordpress.com/2014/05/22/jodenbreestraat-in-amsterdam-given-back-to-people/

    Another person looks at the same street:

    http://bikeportland.org/2013/06/14/observing-jodenbreestraat-a-lively-shopping-street-in-amsterdam-88446

  24.  

    Andy B from Jersey

    “This is the sort of logic that sometimes leads people to the conclusion
    that on-street bicycle facilities decrease road safety. What they’re
    actually doing is increasing bike usage, which in turn is the most
    important way to increase bike safety.”

    It really should be added that bike facilities “increase and focus bike usage to the areas where the bike facility has been built.” Philly saw this phenomenon. There were more crashes where the bike infra was installed simply because those where the areas the bicyclist felt safest to ride and would concentrate onto those roads over parallel routes that had no bike infra.

    And WHY WHY WHY do you insist on showing the most questionable protected bike infra? I’m sorry but 90% of two-way protected on-street infra is dubious and constantly holding it up as model will do nothing but continue to alienate the “vehicularists” to your cause. I’m not against good protected infra but most of what I see the Green Lane Project hold up model examples would have me looking for alternative routes, just like the Broadway Cycletrack in Seattle had me and most other local cyclists doing.

  25.  

    Eric

    The unique factor in Missouri is that the state owns the majority of rural roads that would be county-owned most other states, as well as many urban arterial streets that would otherwise be city-owned. These are the roads that are most important for bike/ped access.

    As MoDOT narrows its focus to the major highways and Interstates, conditions will deteriorate for bicyclists and pedestrians on the state-owned local roads. Going forward, there will be few opportunities to add bike lanes, trails, sidewalks, etc. to these roads. While the 325 plan makes sense in the big picture, it will likely have serious long-term consequences for improving bike/ped conditions in Missouri.

    In the long run, Missouri’s road system needs to be devolved. Local roads should be transferred to the counties and cities, and the communities that want a quality transportation system can choose to fund it.

  26.  

    danbrotherston

    If I had a nickle for every time I’ve heard “this isn’t x”, in reference to a city. The ignorance is yours in believing that things can’t change. There are literally dozens, of cities maybe hundreds if you count smaller towns across North America that are actively choosing to change their direction, to improve future prospects. Refusing change because your city isn’t CURRENTLY “San Francisco” is really just burying your head in the sand.

  27.  

    Justin

    It would be great to see San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee pursue the challenge but I have my doubts

  28.  

    Orson Meyers

    And two decades ago, when the US 431 plans were being developed, Eufaula passed on having a bypass built around it. They were given the option then and they said NO. The alignment would have infringed on the grounds of the Eufaula Country Club. That upset the fancy pants along North Eufaula Avenue who are members there.

    Can’t have it both ways Peggy!

  29.  

    Chris

    How do you run on a bike?

  30.  

    CB

    That last link is about Delaware County, Ohio, not the state of a Delaware. The hint would be that it’s from the Columbus Dispatch which is an Ohio newspaper.

  31.  

    40degreesflaps

    Angie, when are you gonna wake up? I could have told you five years ago that would happen. It’s not the United States of San Francisco where everyone runs around on bikes trying to save the world with someone else’s money. Haven’t you figured that out by now?

  32.  

    Peggy Gargis

    The area does have National Historic Trust designation. That could provide some protection IF the state were using federal funds for the project. But ALDOT is using only our limited state dollars. That allows them to sidestep any federal oversight. ALDOT claims they can’t afford a bypass, even with federal matching $$. I could cite some cost savings in other areas where ALDOT, IMO, has wasted/is wasting ridiculous amounts of cash.

  33.  

    Peggy Gargis

    Whoops. I didn’t see the direct Reply option, Jason Bennett. Please see my response to your question in newer (1-24-15) post.

  34.  

    Peggy Gargis

    Jason Bennett, the locals have written to ALDOT and even met with ALDOT Director AND the governor. AND their state senator. They gathered 6,000 petition signatures, and they have allies in other places. None of that moved Gov. Bentley or ALDOT from their dinosaur road planning and what I have to believe is the spiteful destruction of this historic and scenic treasure. BTW, the area does have National Historic Trust designation. But, because ALDOT is using only state funds, and not federal, they can skirt federal oversight.

  35.  

    al

    Crony Capitalism. He wants to keep his business and is willing to use political means to kill options other than driving.

  36.  

    Coffee Partier

    The biggest opponent was a used car salesman who owned 15 acres on the route. Very sad development for a city that is so dependant on automobiles.

  37.  

    C Monroe

    No news about Detroits people mover derailment during its busiest 2 weeks of the year(North American Auto Show)http://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/local/wayne-county/2015/01/23/detroit-people-mover/22209423/

  38.  

    C Monroe

    go for subway but only settle for elevated! just one step down.

  39.  

    Marven Norman

    Driveways, what fun! The short answer: corridor access management. A road where a cycletrack makes the most sense really is a road where traffic entering and exiting the roadway should be minimized, thus also minimizing driveways.

    However, when commercial driveways do exist that cross Dutch cycletracks, the turn either has a small radius (like below) or the cycletrack gets bent out. But due to the corridor management, most parking lots and businesses are accessed off smaller roads that generally wouldn’t have cycletracks anyway or from (often disconnected) frontage/service roads that also double as the bikeway, with some being redeveloped into bicycle boulevards. I’d agree that driveways are a concern some places would definitely need to have their number of driveways pared back, but many places do also have an obscene amount of driveways. A typical parking crater might easily have 4-5 driveways along a 200′ frontage, all for a parking lot that is connected. Or even worse, parking lots that aren’t connected even though they’re right against each other. Connect up lots and get rid of the superfluous number of driveways.

  40.  

    tbatts666

    I wonder what he people who actually live in the city limits actually think about this. Be silly for the state to decide what a city does with it’s streets…

  41.  

    Marven Norman

    With a properly-designed intersection, drivers will have no problem seeing a cyclist on a cycletrack. That one is good, though a bulb-out might not be a bad addition to enforce being able to clearly see the cyclists and crossing the cycletrack at as close to a right angle as possible.

  42.  

    Marven Norman

    So it appears as if the big/hidden story here is that Atlanta’s sprawl is ruining towns 150 miles away. Absurd.

  43.  

    Max Power

    I sure hope that turning car in the NACTO image stops before he runs over those cyclists.

  44.  

    BBnet3000

    The sharrows that killed Hoyt Jacobs are straight out of the NACTO Urban Bikeway Design Guide. Its alternate title is “throw a bunch of shit at the street and see what sticks”.

  45.  

    Andres Dee

    That’s the “beauty” of BRT. You can shrink it down to the point that it easily disappears.

  46.  

    Don W

    THIS SUCKS. Please keep fighting.

  47.  

    Joe Linton

    sickening

  48.  

    Bob Gunderson

    People are “all for safety” just as long as it doesn’t come at the expense of parking, or car lanes, or changing the street in any way. Like Polk Street. http://dearestdistrict5.blogspot.com/2014/11/save-polk-street-crowd-still-ok-with.html

  49.  

    Andres Dee

    I’ve said umpteen times that there are “interests” out there who want to insure that transit be as unattractive as possible, otherwise folks won’t aspire to a car-centric life. That the opposition to AMP was driven by a car dealer and limo service, just illustrates my point.

    “Even though we aren’t moving forward with the Amp, we will move forward with our strategic planning efforts and engage in extensive dialogue with residents to gain their input on transit solutions for our community,” he added. “We will continue to focus on this corridor as well as others in the region.”

    Wow, a stretagic plan and extensive dialogue!

  50.  

    thielges

    I hope Mr. Foxx also addresses state DOTs as well since they’re often responsible for the most hostile roadways in cities. State highways running through the middle of towns as multi-lane high speed throughways and freeway interchanges that don’t accommodate bikes or peds.