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Wednesday, November 26 2014 @ 09:21 PM UTC
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A short History of Traffic Engineering

Biking ElsewhereimageAttribution Some rights reserved by Mikael Colville-Andersen

Via The Copenhagenize Guide to Liveable Cities (And my friend Bob)
[B' Spokes: Because we all know the fast need to go faster and the slow don't mind going even slower. :/ ]
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Chris Boardman: "Helmets not even in top 10 of things that keep cycling safe"

Biking ElsewhereBritish Cycling policy advisor says it's time to stop distracting helmet arguments and concentrate on real safety issues

by John Stevenson, Road CC

...
Talking to road.cc at the London Bike Show, Boardman said, “I think the helmet issue is a massive red herring. It’s not even in the top 10 of things you need to do to keep cycling safe or more widely, save the most lives.”

You’re being shot at, put on body armour

Boardman returned to an analogy he has made before, and which even he admits is a bit melodramatic, though it gets the point across

“It’s a bit like saying ‘people are sniping at you going down this street, so put some body armour on,’” he said.

Government encouragement to wear helmets was therefore “a big campaign to get people to wear body armour, by the people who should be stopping the shooting.”

Widespread use of helmets, he said, sends the wrong message.

“Once you see somebody wearing body armour, even if there’s no shooting, you think ‘Christ I’m not going down there if they’re wearing body armour to go down that street.’ It scares people off.”
...

http://road.cc/content/news/111258-chris-boardman-helmets-not-even-top-10-things-keep-cycling-safe
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Announcing the best Complete Streets policies of 2013

Biking in the Metro Areaby Smart Growth America

...
Fifteen agencies led the nation in creating comprehensive Complete Streets policies in 2013. These policies are a model for communities across the country. They are:
...

#6. Baltimore County, MD
...

http://www.smartgrowthamerica.org/2014/02/18/announcing-the-best-complete-streets-policies-of-2013/
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[B' Spokes: Now to see if they follow through or if this is just lip service.]
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Worst Drivers By State

Biking in MarylandIn this report by Car Insurance Comparison Maryland did very good overall, that is till you look at the Careless Driving table... and oh look Maryland comes in the top ten (worst) states. :(

StatePedestrians KilledPedacyclists KilledPopulation (Thousands)"Pedestrian Fatality Rate per 100,000 Population""Pedacyclist Fatality Rate per 100,000 Population"Total (Pedestrians + Pedacyclist)Rank
Florida490125190582.570.663.2351
South Carolina1131546792.410.322.7350
Arizona1472364832.270.352.6249
Louisiana881845751.920.392.3148
New Mexico41420821.970.192.1647
Delaware1809071.9801.9846
California625114376921.660.31.9645
North Carolina1602596561.660.261.9244
Nevada46427231.690.151.8443
Maryland102558281.750.091.8442
Hawaii23213751.670.151.8241
Mississippi47729791.580.231.8140
Texas42143256751.640.171.8139
New Jersey1421788211.610.191.838
New York28757194651.470.291.7637
(This rest is continued in the read more.)
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NEW PLAN REVEALED FOR KEY HWY. AND LIGHT ST. INTERSECTION

Biking in BaltimoreBy Kevin Lynch, South Baltimore

At an open house on Wednesday, December 4th, the Baltimore Department of Transportation (DOT) revealed new plans for the poor-performing intersection at Light St. and Key Hwy.,which serves as a gateway into Federal Hill from Downtown.

Previously a traffic circle was planned for the intersection, but the project became too large and expensive and presented concerns regarding pedestrian safety. “They are able to use the same amount of money to make improvements from Conway all the way to Covington, as opposed to just that one intersection,” Councilman William Cole told SouthBMore.com.
...

http://southbmore.com/new-plan-revealed-for-key-hwy-and-light-st-intersection/
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[B' Spokes: I'm glad someone got the message about pedestrian safety with the old design.]
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Huntingdon Avenue to Wyman Park Path Use Survey

Biking in BaltimoreThe goal of this survey is to solicit public support, interest and input on a plan to make improvements to the path running from where Huntingdon Avenue dead-ends into 31st Street and becomes a thoroughfare down the park hill to Wyman Park Drive. (see map below). Your response is greatly appreciated!

image

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1emjC10-WMtBdwWdfdweo2BFT8WO1NOSbUIwyr7bOzZg/viewform
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Cumberland awarded $75,000 bikeways grant

Biking in MarylandBy Greg Larry, Cumberland Times-News

CUMBERLAND — A new $75,000 grant, with plans to add bicycle lanes to Frederick and Bedford streets, has been awarded to the city from the Maryland Bikeways Program.
...

“We have now become a place where a lot of bikers come,” said John DiFonzo, city engineer.

DiFonzo said that cyclists come mainly for the C&O Canal Towpath and Great Allegheny Passage.

“But they are also riding our streets,” said DiFonzo.
...

http://www.times-news.com/local/x1708326494/City-awarded-75-000-bikeways-grant
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[B' Spokes: Trails are great but they don't remove he need to go the same places as cars.]
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Bridge Redesign a Victory for Pedestrian, Cycling Advocates

News you will not see in Marylandby ABERGRENMILLER, Planetizen

The furor started last fall, when the Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) unveiled designs to retrofit the Glendale-Hyperion Bridge. The proposal lacked accommodations for pedestrians and bicyclists, instead suggested expanding vehicular lanes, removing one sidewalk, and installing a central “crash barrier,” Damien Newton writes.

The Los Angeles County Bicycle Coalition, Enrich L.A., and other local organizations—together with plenty of individual walkers and cyclists—protested the move. As a result, the LADOT last week presented three new proposals, each of which include dedicated bike lanes and a road diet.
...

http://www.planetizen.com/node/67196
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Move Along: Upending the social order on our roads

Biking ElsewhereBy Jonathan Krall, Alexandria Times

While not intentional, biking and walking upset the transit social order. According to conventional thinking, roads are for cars, slow drivers are “bad drivers,” and cyclists and pedestrians should stay out of the way.

The idea that roads should be safe and effective for all users — the concept known as complete streets — aims to upend this social order, moving cars from first to last.

The longstanding order of the road is governed not by laws, but by socially enforced rules. For example, one might voluntarily drive below the speed limit on the Beltway.

That would be perfectly legal but likely would garner honks, flashing headlights and rude gestures. As everyone knows, appropriate driving speeds begin at the speed limit and extend upward, not downward. The power of these rules is such that police rarely issue a ticket, photographic or otherwise, for driving up to 10 mph above the speed limit.

All this came to mind the other day, when I was bicycling in violation of the social order. I was riding in the center of a narrow lane when a driver started honking at me. Shortly thereafter, he pulled alongside me and helpfully explained that cyclists are not allowed in the street unless they can ride at the speed limit.

This struck me as quite the head-scratcher. After all, isn’t the speed limit an upper limit? Those of us with Internet access have certainly read that cyclists should not be allowed on the road unless they “obey the law.” Riding at a typical bicycle speed surely complies with the law. Nevertheless, I’ve been told — even by friends — that cyclists must ride at the speed limit.

As it turns out, the speed limit is the single point of intersection between socially acceptable driving speeds and socially acceptable bicycling speeds. Cyclists who do not ride this tightrope — and that would be all of them — are in violation of at least one of these social conventions.

Despite endless discussions about safety and the law, increasingly it is clear to me that many people get upset by social rather than legal violations of the rules. While the majority of drivers remain polite, a vocal minority is extremely attached to the status quo.

As old gives way to new, outdated ideas fall by the wayside. One of these is that automobile traffic is an unstoppable force. As a pedestrian, it is up to me to get out of the way or suffer the consequences. As a cyclist, there is no point in asking for bike lanes because they would simply put me in harm’s way.

The complete-streets concept recognizes that individual drivers, cyclists and pedestrians rule traffic. Each is able to slow down and even stop to avoid a crash. Complete streets are updated streets, often with narrower traffic lanes that have been demonstrated to slow motorized traffic. With complete streets, pedestrians come first, followed by transit, cyclists and cars.
...

Responding to the failure of the automobile to deliver promises of speed and freedom to 100 percent of the population, people take up walking and bicycling
...

A 2012 nationwide poll, reported by McCann, showed that “63 percent of Americans would like to address traffic congestion by improving public transportation and designing communities for easier walking and bicycling.” While frustrating for some, these changes are supported by a majority of residents. The new social order, it seems, is here to stay.

http://alextimes.com/2014/02/move-along-upending-the-social-order-on-our-roads/
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The 10 cities where no one wants to drive

Biking in Baltimore By Alexander E.M. Hess and Thomas C. Frohlich, Yahoo Finance

...
6. Baltimore, MD
> Pct. of households without a vehicle: 31.2%
> Pct. commuting to work via public transportation: 19.2% (23rd most)
> Transit score: 56.9 (10th best)
> Population: 620,216 (26th largest)

The percentage of Baltimore households without a car rose from 29.3% in 2007 to 31.2% in 2012. One reason may be the quality of walking routes and public transportation in the city; Baltimore received some of the top marks in the nation for both walking and public transportation. The Maryland Transit Administration operates a number of services, including commuter buses and trains, as well as a more-than 15 mile-long subway. In 2012, more than 19% of commuters took public transportation to work, one of the higher percentages in the nation. There are also plans to build a new light-rail system, called the Red Line.
...

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/10-cities-where-no-one-172217897.html

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