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Wednesday, June 20 2018 @ 12:08 AM UTC
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To Fight Climate Change, Cities Need to Battle Cars

Biking ElsewhereBy HENRY GRABAR, City Lab

On June 1, the U.S. Climate Mayors—a network of more than 300 city leaders, including the mayors of the country’s five largest cities—published a commitment to “adopt, honor, and uphold the commitments to the goals enshrined in the Paris Agreement.” The cities would carry out the promises Donald Trump had abandoned.

I have bad news for this feel-good caucus. Want to fight climate change? You have to fight cars. In the nation’s largest cities, cars account for about a third of greenhouse gas emissions. Nationally, transportation is now the single largest contributor to carbon emissions.
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https://www.citylab.com/equity/2017/06/to-fight-climate-change-cities-need-to-battle-cars/530721/?utm_source=SFTwitter
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Urban myth busting: Congestion, idling, and carbon emissions``

Biking ElsewhereBy Joe Cortright, City Observatory

Increasing road capacity to reduce greenhouse gas emissions will backfire

Time for another episode of City Observatory’s Urban Myth Busters, which itself is an homage to the long-running Discovery Channel series “Mythbusters” that featured co-hosts Adam Savage and Jamie Hyneman using something called “science” to test whether commonly believed tropes were really true.
...

Today’s claim comes from the world of transportation. As we all know, transportation is now the single largest source of greenhouse gas emissions. Here, when confronted with the need to do something to address climate change, the highway lobby likes to point out that cars emit carbon, and when they’re idling or driving in stop and go traffic, they may emit more carbon per mile than when they travel at a nice steady speed. And of course, they have a solution for that: spend more money expanding capacity so cars don’t have to slow down so much. That’ll be great for the environment, or so the argument goes.
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In place of the now retired duo of Adam and Jamie, we’ll turn this question over to Alex and Miguel–Alex Bigazzi and Miguel Figliozzi, two transportation researchers at Portland State University. Their research shows that savings in emissions from idling can be more than offset by increased driving prompted by lower levels of congestion. The underlying problem is our old friend, induced demand: when you reduce congestion, people drive more, and the “more driving” more than cancels out any savings from reduced idling.
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http://cityobservatory.org/urban-myth-busting_idling_carbon/
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Bicycle Friendly Delaware Act

Biking ElsewhereVia email

Just a few minutes ago, Delaware's state legislature passed, and sent to the Governor, the "Bicycle Friendly Delaware Act" which makes a number of changes to Delaware's Rules of the Road including, and especially, creating the "Delaware Yield" exception in state law permitting safe yielding by cyclists at stop signs.

Delaware becomes the first state in 35 years to figure out how to duplicate Idaho's 1982 passage of the "Idaho Stop".

The Bicycle Friendly Delaware Act also defines bicycle traffic signals in state code; prohibits honking at cyclists; and requires motorists to change lanes when passing when travel lanes are too narrow for side-by-side sharing (making "Three Foot" passing a requirement only in the special case of wide lanes). "As close as practicable to the right-hand edge of the roadway" (the dreaded "AFRAP") also disappears from state code (replaced by " far enough to the right as judged safe by the operator to facilitate the movement of such overtaking vehicles unless the bicycle operator determines that other conditions make it unsafe to do so") and, again, only as a special case for wide lanes.

Delaware is distinctive for a number of unusual advocacy wins over the last 6 years:

2011: Dedicated State Funding For Bicycling Beyond Transportation Alternatives ("Walkable Bikeable Delaware")
As I type this, there are huge cranes in the river just south of Wilmington building part of Delaware's largest-ever cycling project: ~$20 million undertaking to complete the "Wilmington-New Castle Greenway", a 7-mile paved bikeway between our largest city (Wilmington) and our colonial capitol (New Castle). This is only the most spectacular example of the state's radically increased funding for cycling since the passage of Walkable Bikeable Delaware in 2011.

2013: Goodbye "Share The Road"
Academic research has revealed that "Share The Road" just doesn't work. Delaware was the first state to get rid of this sign (and still is only one of two).

2016: Bicycle-Friendly Development Law ("Bikes+Transit")
Walkable, bikeable, transit-served, mixed-use, and entrepreneurial communities advance multiple priorities: public health, affordable housing, ageing in place, and reduced air pollution. Delaware's "Complete Communities" law, passed in 2016, created a mechanism for state and local governments to align these priorities and to jointly enable the development of bicycle-friendly communities.

2017: "Delaware Yield"
Delaware is the first state since Idaho in 1982 to permit safe yielding by cyclists at stop signs.
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Bicyclists do help pay for the road, contribute economically

Biking ElsewhereBy Melinda Barnes, Montana Standard

Road safety is something that benefits us all and should not be a polarizing political issue. Period.
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One myth is that bicyclists don’t pay for the roads. Local and state road maintenance is primarily funded by user gas taxes, but new infrastructure is primarily funded by federal funds in which less than half of that comes from gas taxes. Property taxes are a key portion of road funds too. Furthermore, it would take 17,059 trips by bicycle to equal the damage caused by an average car. The reality is that 99% of Montana adult bicyclists own vehicles (and many own homes too) meaning 99% of all state residents riding bicycles are paying just as much in taxes as your average motorist and cost a miniscule fraction in damages. Bicycling benefits us all.
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Another myth is that bicyclists don’t contribute economically. Visiting bicyclists spend nearly $400 million each year in Montana; 40% more than the average motorized tourist. These are real dollars impacting real Montanans and local businesses every day in communities like Ovando, Libby, Butte, Big Timber, Glasgow, and Red Lodge. Bicycle tourism benefits us all.
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http://mtstandard.com/news/opinion/guest/bicyclists-do-help-pay-for-the-road-contribute-economically/article_f8ca2a68-8108-55ea-9059-019345918d5f.html
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Seattle Campaign to #GivePedsTheGreen Would Do Away With “Beg Buttons”

News you will not see in MarylandBy Angie Schmitt, Streets Blog

Appetition in Seattle is calling on the city to do away with “beg buttons” and automatically give pedestrians a walk signal at every traffic light in its “urban villages” — areas that are walkable and transit-oriented.
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http://usa.streetsblog.org/2017/03/24/seattle-campaign-to-givepedsthegreen-would-do-away-with-beg-buttons/
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RECOMMENDED TRAFFIC CALMING POP-UP RESOURCES

Biking Elsewhere-> Strong Towns Summit traffic calming demonstration leader Marielle Brown shared a list of her favorite free resources for planning and executing pop-ups. (http://bit.ly/2pQWM2D) These seven resources are:

Trailnet’s Slow Your Street- a How-To Guide for Pop Up Traffic Calming: http://bit.ly/2pQKHL6
David Engwicht’s Intrigue & Uncertainty: Toward New Traffic-Taming Tools: http://bit.ly/2pR1bmf
Street Plans Collaborative’s The Tactical Urbanist’s Guide to Materials and Design: http://bit.ly/2gYTnLy
Street Plans Collaborative’s Tactical Urbanism 2: http://bit.ly/2pR1JbU
WikiBlock downloadable patterns for building street furniture and traffic calming tools with plywood: http://bit.ly/2pR1NbE
NACTO’s design guides covering traffic calming and bicycle facilities: http://bit.ly/2pQRDYH
United States Access Board’s guidelines and standards: http://bit.ly/2pQLBXQ

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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RURAL/URBAN PED & BIKE FATALITIES

Biking Elsewhere-> NHTSA’s 2015 Rural/Urban Comparison of Traffic Fatalities fact sheet reports that while 19% of the US population lives in rural areas, 22% of fatal pedestrian crashes with motorists occurred in rural areas, and 26% of fatal bicyclist crashes with motorists occurred in rural areas. These involved 1,160 pedestrians killed and 214 bicyclists killed. http://bit.ly/2qPpRR2

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

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Cities With the Most Highway Miles: a “Who’s Who” of Decay

Biking in BaltimoreBy Angie Schmitt, Streets Blog

This is fascinating. Using data from the FHWA, the esteemed Patrick Kennedy at Network blog Walkable Dallas Fort Worth has cobbled together a list of the American cities with the highest number of estimated highway lane miles per capita.

See if you notice any similarities (this is per 1,000 people):
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10. Baltimore – .724
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http://usa.streetsblog.org/2012/04/20/cities-with-the-most-highway-miles-a-whos-who-of-decay/
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Cyclists Break the Law to Stay Safe, Study Finds

Biking ElsewhereBY JOE LINDSEY, Bicycling

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A massive new study shows that while cyclists do break traffic laws, they do so mostly in service of self-preservation.
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http://www.bicycling.com/culture/advocacy/cyclists-break-the-law-to-stay-safe-study-finds
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DISTRACTED DRIVING KILLED 522 PEDS & CYCLISTS IN 2015

Biking Elsewhere-> NHTSA’s Distracted Driving 2015 fact sheet reports there were 443 pedestrians and 79 bicyclists killed in distraction-affected crashes. Driver distraction is a specific type of driver inattention. Distraction occurs when drivers divert their attention from the driving task to focus on some other activity. Oftentimes, discussions regarding distracted driving center around cell phone use and texting, but distracted driving also includes other activities such as eating, talking to other passengers, or adjusting the radio or climate controls. http://bit.ly/2qPemcj

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

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Maryland should adopt the Idaho stop law.

  •  Strongly agree
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The state should support what kind of bicycle facilities?

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