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Friday, September 22 2017 @ 04:39 AM UTC
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THE 5 BEST U.S. CITIES FOR BIKING AND BEER

Biking in BaltimoreBy Erin Peters, Vinepair

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HONORABLE MENTION
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Baltimore, Maryland – Bikes and Beers does a great tour in this city through many famous sites, including Penn Station, City Hall, Inner Harbor, Little Italy and the Maryland Zoo. The city has its own bicycling club, appropriately named the Baltimore Bicycling Club, with routes that range from 35 to 77 miles.

http://vinepair.com/articles/the-5-best-u-s-cities-for-biking-and-beer/
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Do pedestrian buttons actually work?

Biking ElsewhereVia OntarioTrafficman

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Explaining why some pedestrian buttons don't seem to work
https://youtu.be/jn__NOYSdhc

At a typical intersection between a main street and a side street, the pedestrian signal along the main street defaults to walk, so it doesn’t matter whether or not anyone presses the button.
[B' Spokes: Not around here they don't and that irks me. Watch the video to see a better way to make Ped buttons work. Something the article failed to mention by requiring the ped button to be always pushed before the green phase has started and/or requiring a mandatory 90 second "pre-queue" before a pedestrian can start walking DOT is actually encouraging unsafe crossings. "must be programmed to minimize delay, which will increase compliance." (https://www.baltimorespokes.org/article.php?story=20170120183303614)]
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https://ontariotrafficman.wordpress.com/2016/10/03/do-pedestrian-buttons-actually-work/
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The vast difference in driver education and biking/pedestrian education is what causes this rift between modes.

Biking ElsewhereBy Maggie Awad, Arlington Transportation Planers

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[Just the headings]
So What Can We Do?
Equal Education
Change Safety Messaging
On-Demand Education for On-Demand Services


[B' Spokes: Seriously read this!]
http://blog.arlingtontransportationpartners.com/why-you-should-care-about-other-modes-now
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Guess who wants to teach cyclists a lesson?

Biking ElsewhereBy Jenifer Joy Madden, Greater greater Washington

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The sub-sample’s rationale for aggressive behavior had two prevailing notions about cyclists:

They "had it coming"
They "needed to be taught a lesson"
Some of their sample comments:

“They need to obey highway rules EXACTLY the same as anyone driving.”
“Unsafe bicycle riding is the greatest single hazard in my community.”
“I don’t trust bicyclists in any way.”
“It’s like they dare you to hit them.”

In describing his soon-to-be-published research, Piatkowski observed that, among those exhibiting what he termed “corrective behavior,” they did not specify what lesson they were attempting to teach cyclists. He posits their motivation might be “crime as social control,” or using a crime as a means to enforce social norms. A similar example is placing a chair in a public parking space and calling it your own, then vandalizing any other cars that park there.
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https://ggwash.org/view/62238/guess-who-wants-to-teach-cyclists-a-lesson-bicycle-backlash
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2016 Motor Vehicle Deaths Estimated to be Highest in Nine Years

Biking ElsewhereVia National Safety Council

​For the first time in nearly a decade, preliminary data from the National Safety Council estimates that as many as 40,000 people died in motor vehicle crashes in 2016. That marks a 6% increase over 2015 and a 14% increase over 2014 – the most dramatic two-year escalation in 53 years. ​

An estimated 4.6 million roadway users were injured seriously enough to require medical attention, a 7% increase over 2015. This means 2016 may have been the deadliest year on the roads since 2007. Estimated cost to society was $432 billion.
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NSC is calling for immediate implementation of life-saving measures that would set the nation on a road to zero deaths:

* Mandate ignition interlocks for convicted drunk drivers and better education about the nature of impairment and when it begins
* Install and use automated enforcement techniques to catch speeders
* Extend laws banning all cell phone use – including hands-free – to all drivers, not just teens; upgrade enforcement from secondary to primary in states with existing bans
* Upgrade seat belt laws from secondary to primary enforcement and extend restraint laws to every passenger in every seating position in all kinds of vehicles
* Adopt a three-tiered licensing system for all new drivers under 21 – not just those under 18
* Standardize and accelerate into the fleet automotive safety technologies with life-saving potential, including blind-spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and adaptive headlights
* Pass or reinstate motorcycle helmet laws
* Adopt comprehensive programs for pedestrian safety
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http://www.nsc.org/learn/NSC-Initiatives/Pages/Fatality-Estimates.aspx
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When it comes to traffic safety, fun beats fear

Biking ElsewhereBy Andrew Carpenter, City Lab, April 15, 2016

Being a pedestrian is, unfortunately, an increasingly dangerous proposition in many communities throughout the United States. A recent report from the Governors Highway Safety Association shows that, just between 2014 and 2015, pedestrian deaths grew 10 percent.

In many regions, public safety campaigns are a go-to tactic to address the widespread issue of pedestrian safety. But the current, most prevalent approach of “fear appeals” – attempting to scare people into safer behaviors – has not been effective. Changing human behavior is no small task.

Routine tasks involved in commuting develop into automated habits, undermining the belief in many campaigns that road users make rational safety choices based on logic, information or fear. Such an approach tends to place the safety burden on the most vulnerable road users and remove it from drivers.

In the D.C. region, the Street Smart campaign [which they also use in the Baltimore area], for example, has come under fire in the past as being counterproductive for its use of fear-based messages directed at pedestrians and bicyclists.
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In August 2013, the dynamic message board at the intersection, which had previously warned drivers of the dangerous merge, changed its message to something simple that pointed directly at drivers’ immediate actions: “Do not hit the car in front of you.” Though it seems laughable, accidents at that intersection actually dropped significantly in the following weeks.
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Properly placed and engaging signals with direct, positive messaging can bring safety back to the forefront of people’s minds and have them actively consider their behavior. However, to change the roots of bad driving and long-standing, culturally ingrained habits, planners will have to shift the built environment itself in order to encourage the best possible actions from road users.

https://mobilitylab.org/2016/04/15/traffic-safety-fun-beats-fear/
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What if the money we spent on cars went for something else?

Biking in BaltimoreVia BikeMore, Priorities: Southeast Transportation Vision Wrongly Puts County Residents First

[B' Spokes: In BikeMore's post there are some maps that demonstrate what you can get in bike infrastructure improvement if you take the same money for a very small cars only project and then they do the same thing again for bus improvements vs another cars only project. The difference is very striking.]

https://www.bikemore.net/news/priorities-southeast-transportation-vision-puts-county-residents-first
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GUIDE TO BENEFITS OF BICYCLING

Biking Elsewhere-> A recent Biking Expert blog, Ultimate Guide To The Benefits Of Biking, includes health, environmental, financial and social benefits. http://bit.ly/2krRlZU

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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SAN FRANCISCO, CA TRUCK SIDE GUARD INITIATIVE

Biking in Baltimore-> "Vision Zero San Francisco, CA Truck Side Guard Initiative: Technical Assessment and Recommendations" summarizes Volpe's research and recommendations supporting San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) efforts to improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety through side guards, vehicle-based safety devices designed to prevent pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists from being run over by a large truck's rear wheels in a side-impact collision. http://bit.ly/2kLmO90

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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SLOWER SPEED LIMITS MOVE MORE TRAFFIC, CUT PED CRASHES

Biking Elsewhere-> The Urban Reality blog reports on a study conducted by the Helsinki, Finland City Planning Department. (Speed Management in Helsinki: http://bit.ly/2kLJzKd) The 2004 study noted since the early 1970s, the number of traffic fatalities per year has dropped dramatically in spite of doubling of car mileage. Speed management has been the most important single factor behind this development. Helsinki originally reduced speed limits on their highways in 1973 and cut the number of pedestrian crashes in half. After a series of interim speed reductions on various types of roads, the city reduced all its 50 & 40 km/hr speed limits to 40 & 30 km/hr (25 - 18.6 mph) in 2004.

The study notes slowing down cars can actually move more people who are driving as the capacity of a lane depends on the intervals between successive vehicles. The slower the leading car drives in front of a queue, the closer the next car can follow. It looks like the optimal speed in urban street network for capacity is somewhere between 30 and 40 kilometers per hour. http://bit.ly/2kHfmMt

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.

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