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Saturday, October 10 2015 @ 08:56 AM UTC


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The World Could Save Trillions With Buses and Bikes

Biking ElsewhereBy Alex Davies, Wired

THE ARGUMENT THAT embracing a low-carbon future is a road map to economic ruin is bunk, say a band of economists who argue that investing in more efficient transportation, buildings and waste management could save cities worldwide at least $17 trillion. One way to unlock that savings is to promote bikes and buses.
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The Cities That Spend The Most On Bike Lanes Later Reap The Most Reward

Biking ElsewhereBy Adele Peters, Fast Coexist

Investing in a network of fully separated bike lanes could save cities huge sums in the long-term. But too little investment in wimpy infrastructure could actually decrease enthusiasm for cycling.

For every dollar spent to build new separated bike lanes, cities could save as much as $24 thanks to lower health care costs and less pollution and traffic, according to a new study from researchers in New Zealand.
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Biking Elsewhere-> The Sustainable Communities HotReport is designed to give community leaders and residents a quick and easy way to determine how well their communities are performing on a variety of sustainability indicators in transportation, housing, economic development, income and equity. Select a community to view charts, tables, and maps showing performance trends over time or select other communities that you consider "peer" or comparison communities.

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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Biking Elsewhere-> In the "Does Walkability Matter? An Examination of Walkability's Impact on Housing Values, Foreclosures and Crime" study (, researchers examined 170 neighborhoods in a medium-sized city to see whether walkability influences neighborhood sustainability. Their analysis shows a positive impact not only on neighborhood housing valuation but also on neighborhood crime and foreclosure. These results provide policy opportunities for planners and citizen groups to pursue strategies to encourage the development of more walkable and sustainable neighborhoods.
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Signs of Our Times: Sharing the Streets

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: We really need to get rid of the signage that the state and the localities have standardized on to give notice that cyclists have a right to the road. A good argument on why is in this article.]
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Biking Elsewhere-> A new junction [intersection] designed to avoid cyclists being hit by left-turning traffic has been unveiled in London. This is the first junction of its kind in Britain. Cyclists and turning motor traffic will move in separate phases, with left-turning vehicles held back to allow cyclists to move without risk, and cyclists held when vehicles are turning left. There will also be a new two-stage right turn' to let cyclists make right turns in safety. For straight-ahead traffic, early-release traffic lights will give cyclists a head start. These innovations aim to significantly cut the cyclist casualty rate. Around 85% of cyclist accidents happen at junctions, mostly involving turning traffic. The new junction, on the upgraded Cycle Superhighway 2 at Whitechapel Road and Cambridge Heath Road, will be the template for junctions to be introduced across London's main road network in future.

[Since vehicles travel on the left side of the road in Britain, switch left with right turns above for North American contexts.]

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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Sprawl Costs the U.S. $1 Trillion Annually

Biking ElsewhereBy Liz Camuti, The Dirt

"Excessive vehicle use should be discouraged by creating streets that include adequate sidewalks and crosswalks, bike infrastructure, and bus systems."
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Cycling has a higher risk of fatality than driving or walking, mostly because of men

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: I'm sharing this reluctantly. I dabble in statistics and I find this report suspect.
1) It would be darn hard to find any meaningful random sampling of what exactly is a "typical" cyclists exposure to calculate comparative risk from.
2) "2001 National Household Travel Survey was used to estimate traffic exposure" - Oh, lets use "main mode of transportation to work" which represents ~ 25% of all trips as the way to calculate exposure. One way to throw off this calculation is if cyclists did more other trips than riding to work as their motoring counterparts. (See ref#1 for more information on trips)
3) Since we are dealing with small numbers (in comparison) small errors can lead to large errors in the conclusion. For example: If you hear that Baltimore's cycling population has increased 300%, while that is a good thing it is still a lot smaller then other cities its size. Small numbers can change dramatically in terms of percentages but still are basically meaningless when looked at in a different light. ]

You can read Washcycle's take more at face value here:
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Hey look, that flawed Texas A&M traffic study is back and grabbing the usual headlines

Biking Elsewhereby David Alpert, Greater Greater Washington

The Texas Transportation Institute today released another one of its periodic reports on traffic congestion. This one ranked the DC area first in delay per car commuter. The last report, in 2012, came under considerable criticism for its flawed methodology, and the new one doesn't seem to have changed much, though its author sounds a little more sophisticated about possible solutions.

The report, from Texas A&M University, looks at only one factor: how fast traffic moves. Consider two hypothetical cities. In Denseopolis, people live within 2 miles of work on average, but the roads are fairly clogged and drivers can only go about 20 miles per hour. However, it only takes an average of 6 minutes to get to work, which isn't bad.

On the other hand, in Sprawlville, people live about 30 miles from work on average, but there are lots and lots of fast-moving freeways, so people can drive 60 mph. That means it takes 30 minutes to get to work.

Which city has worse roads? By TTI's methods, it's Denseopolis. But it's the people of Sprawlville who spend more time commuting, and thus have less time to be with their families and for recreation.
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A Wonderfully Clear Explanation of How Road Diets Work

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: Excellent video showing how to include bicycle facilities with NO impact on road capacity nor travel times. I will also point out 10' lanes are safer! Hear that SHA? You are requiring unsafe widths both for cyclists and motor vehicles and I will assert against State Law which requires best engineering for cyclists not best engineering so motorists can comfortably pass a bus traveling the speed limit.(State Law repeated in the Read more section.)]
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Maryland should adopt the Idaho stop law.

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