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  #1061  
Old Posted Jan 25, 2014, 6:06 AM
zilfondel zilfondel is offline
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Originally Posted by M II A II R II K View Post
Then when a lighter material version becomes more affordable, then a transit specific folding bike could become more popular.
Here is a folding bike that costs less than $300 and is only 27 lbs. Thats a pretty damned good deal, if you need a folding commuter bike. You probably aren't going to get any lighter than aluminum unless someone invents a carbon fiber or titanium folding bike - but then it'll cost you $10,000 (and crabon can break).

http://www.amazon.com/Dahon-Boardwal.../dp/B001UL5MQU


img from dicks sporting goods

Dahon Boardwalk


Now, if you want a fast folding bike, the Bike Friday bikes are really great at it - and are pretty small when all folded up. Great for mass transit. Takes about 2 seconds to fold the thing up:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GMcQItcdwzM
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  #1062  
Old Posted Jan 25, 2014, 7:16 PM
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Originally Posted by fflint View Post
It's fair to say the tourist-oriented rental bikes don't serve commuters, but your claim Bay Area Bike Share doesn't serve commuters is not obviously true. Why do you think that?
I am going through a learning curve here, as Steeley Dan have been showing me how Divvy works in Chicago.

I was caught in the mindset that bike sharing reflected numerous small entrepreneurs, and, the logistics of moving bikes per daily and longer term demand changes gave me doubts.

I have learned that bike sharing has to be viewed as a regulated utility where one or two preferred vendors have blanket a city with a huge number of drop off and pick up points.

If, as a commuter, I could arrive at a city center station, take bike #1, to or close to my job and drop the bike off, and, take bike #2 from the first drop off point (or one close to it) and drop it off at the station for a total of 2 short rentals the system works.

Multiply my commute by thousands and the bike utility becomes a huge network of nodes between which bike units are moved either through rental use, or by bike utility employees to redirect supply to high demand areas. This demands same ownership of bike rental locations for both physical bike and billing purposes.

To work, other than to provide very localized recreation bike rental services that are used for zoos, or parts, etc., where bikes are rented at entrances and dropped off at exists, bike utilities require fairly big money, and, the political muscle to become preferred vendor.

If this is not (yet) the San Francisco experience, it soon will be.
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  #1063  
Old Posted Jan 25, 2014, 11:30 PM
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  #1064  
Old Posted Jan 26, 2014, 2:38 AM
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Basically, SF's bikeshare helps commuters solve what is called the "last mile" problem.

Let's say you live in San Mateo, and you have taken Caltrain to the SF terminal--but the station is 1.3 miles from your office in the northern CBD. You go to the bikeshare pod at the train station, take out one of the bikes and ride to the pod nearest your office tower, where you lock up the bike and leave it. When you're ready to leave the office and head to the train station, you do the same thing in reverse--pick up a nearby bike and drop it off at the train station pod.

A forumer I know does something like that for his commute to and from school. He picks up a bike near his apartment in North Beach and rides it across the Financial District to Market Street, drops it off, and takes the Muni Metro to campus, and vice-versa at the end of the school day.
I understand the principle, of course. My interest is in what territorial scope do bikeshare vendors have in SF.

Logically, an urban core would be saturated with pickup/drop off stations, as the denser the nodes in the bike rental network are, the shorter the distance from destinations a user is to supply and drop off locations.

However, as in any network that moves physical items (think the old pneumatic tube letter movers), there is an inevitable difference in how many bikes are needed at each node in a set of nodes and the non-revenue generating moves necessary balance the bike supply between nodes. This, IMO, points to the need for vendors to have many nodes with standardized bicycles and an artificial intelligence driven billing and inventory management system.

I am struck by how this is big business as well as by the politicization necessary to both get a large scale franchise, and to maintain the franchise. Small providers either have to franchise with a parent corporation or face the dilemma of not having a wide enough network of pickup and drop nodes to handle the expenses required to move bikes to adjust to daily demand or to use city wide instant billing systems.

This is not small business, long term, except in very small markets within tightly defined geographic boundaries.
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  #1065  
Old Posted Jan 26, 2014, 3:05 AM
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  #1066  
Old Posted Jan 26, 2014, 4:44 PM
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  #1067  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2014, 1:54 AM
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The Metropolitan Transportation Commission and the Bay Area Air Quality Management District hired Alta Bicycle Share to operate Bay Area Bike Share, but I'm not sure they're a "vendor" in the way you're talking. This is basically a product of regional government.

Anway, there are sensors at the bike pods and bikes can be redistributed among the pods via truck if the sensors indicate to the operator that there will be a shortage somewhere. They've definitely got that all covered.
Thanks. For the system to work, either a franchise system using interchangeable bikes and a shared billing/inventory system or one politically appointed corporation to be licensed to put pickup and drop off stations on state owned property throughout the urban core.

A last possibility would be for the local government to own the bikes and operate the system, but, I suspect such a system would have high fees.
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  #1068  
Old Posted Jan 27, 2014, 5:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Wizened Variations View Post
Are all the bikes owned by one corporation (Divvy)?

Are bike drop off/pick up sites on space rented to either public entities or to property owners?

The business model seems to be that of a bike utility, as for this to work, there can only be one or two corporations providing the service for the entire urban core. The complexity of inventory management, repair, and the movement of bikes to reflect changes in demand, IMO, would require significant monies as well as a heck of a lot of political leg work.
Divvy is best understood as a public transit agency. it exists to serve the transportation needs of the people of the city, not to turn a profit. all of the bikes and docking stations are standardized "one-design" and are owned and managed by divvy, and the docking stations are placed within the public right of way along streets, sidewalks, parks, etc.
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  #1069  
Old Posted Jan 28, 2014, 12:38 AM
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Last edited by fflint; Feb 2, 2014 at 11:00 AM.
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  #1070  
Old Posted Feb 5, 2014, 7:04 PM
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Show your support for for the new Bicycle and Pedestrian Infrastructure Financing Act

Read More: http://blog.nj.com/nj_off-road_bikin...ncing_act.html

Website: https://www.votervoice.net/BikeLeagu.../34386/Respond

Quote:
.....

Modeled after the successful Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA), this bipartisan legislation will allow communities to take advantage of low-cost financing for projects that make our streets and sidewalks safer for all users.

- The New Opportunities for Bicycle and Pedestrian Infrastructure Financing Act of 2014 (NOBPIFA) will allow communities to take advantage of low-cost financing for projects that make streets and sidewalks safer for all users through a new federal credit assistance program that would direct millions specifically for low-income communities.

- The League of American Bicyclists is asking all of us to voice our opinion and to make sure our representatives are aware of how we feel. If you believe bicycling should be safe for everyone, tell your Representative to support H.R. 3978 today!

The League summarizes the main points of the bill thusly:

• It creates a low-interest long-term loan program for communities to build biking and walking networks.

• It enforces that 25% of the funding must be spent in low-income communities

• It has the funding, $11 million, as a set-aside from the $1 billion dollar TIFIA loan program already funded in MAP-21.

• It offers a new tool for Mayors and local governments to finance needed transportation infrastructure.
And it doesn't add any new costs to the transportation bill, or to the federal budget.

.....





San Francisco and its cycletracks lead the way toward safer biking statewide

Read More: http://www.sfbg.com/politics/2014/01...king-statewide

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San Francisco has been blazing the trail toward safer cycling with innovative designs such as cycletracks, or bike lanes that are physically separated from cars, which have been installed on Market Street and JFK Drive. But cycletracks aren’t legal under state law, something that a San Francisco lawmaker and activist are trying to solve so that other California cities can more easily build them.

“Right now, many cities are not putting in cycletracks for fear they don’t conform to the Caltrans manual,” says Assemblymember Phil Ting, whose Assembly Bill 1193 — which would legalize and set design standards for cycletracks — cleared the Assembly yesterday [Wed/29] and is now awaiting action by the Senate. --- Ting is working on the issue with the California Bicycle Coalition, whose executive director Dave Snyder is a longtime San Francisco bike activist. Snyder says Caltrans doesn’t allow bike lanes that include physical barriers against traffic, even though they are widely used in other countries and states and considered to be safest design for cyclists.

“San Francisco is technically breaking the law because they have the best traffic engineers in the state and a good City Attorney’s Office and they know they can defend it in court if they have to,” Snyder said. “Most places in the state won’t do that.” --- In addition to the direct benefits of the legislation in San Francisco and other cities, Snyder said the legislation seems to be triggering a long-overdue discussion at Caltrans and other agencies about how to encourage more people to see cycling as an attractive transportation option, with all the environmental, public health, and traffic alleviation benefits that brings.

.....
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  #1071  
Old Posted Feb 18, 2014, 7:05 PM
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Bringing Back Mississippi Riverfront Towns Through Bike Trails

Read More: http://www.theatlanticcities.com/job...e-trails/8382/

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The Mississippi River has come a long way since Huck Finn went rafting down the banks of the waterway that flows from northern Minnesota to the Gulf of Mexico.

In that time, the Great River has transitioned from steamboat commerce to broader agricultural and industrial development. But time hasn't been a friend to the communities that sit on the shores of the second-longest river in the country: Pollution levels rose steadily and development destroyed much of the natural wildlife that used to grace its shores. However, in recent decades, different riverfront-development organizations have sprung up along the Mississippi River that have helped boost communities' economies, promote recreation, and stem the flow of pollution.

One of those groups is River Action—a small nonprofit outfit based in Davenport, Iowa, one of the cities in Illinois and Iowa that make up the Quad Cities area along the Mississippi and Rock Rivers. The area has a long industrial history, having served as the hub for John Deere, an agriculture machinery company. Now in its 30th year, the group not only leads educational efforts about the important waterway, but also seeks federal and state grants for projects that help boost local commerce and the environment. A new focus on riverfront development has made downtown areas on both sides of Mississippi River enjoy booming housing and business, all without forgetting its industrial past. Now, the Quad Cities area is seen as one of the most affordable areas in the country, ranking second in the nation for beating the housing bubble.

"We want to get people to the river to get that first-hand personal experience," says Amy Bandman, program director at River Action. "We can create better stewards of the environment by our rivers through these educational and environmental projects." --- One of the biggest issues facing the Quad Cities is the environmental damage that decades of agriculture, relying heavily on pesticides, have done to the area water, wildlife, marshes, and wetlands. In order to deal with these runoff pollutants—fertilizers, chemicals, oil, grease, sediment, salts, and bacteria—River Action worked with the Illinois Environmental Protection Agency on several recent projects.

To prevent these pollutants from entering the Rock River, in this latest example, the group provided funding and managed the restoration of a stream bank and native plants on a commercial drainage ditch in Rock Island, Illinois. Additionally, it helped build rain gardens on a Black Hawk College parking lot in Moline, Illinois, and also worked on restoring wetlands and streams in a nature preserve in the same town. This sort of wetland restoration is happening all over the country, not just along the Mississippi River. Beyond these programs, River Action has been key to developing more than 65 miles of riverfront biking and walking trails in the Quad Cities area. When the organization was founded 30 years ago, there were only two miles of trails.

.....





LA’s first Bicycle Friendly Business District is coming to Northeast Los Angeles

Read More: http://ladotbikeblog.wordpress.com/2...t-los-angeles/

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We are happy to announce that the City of Los Angeles is working on establishing its first Bicycle Friendly Business District in Northeast Los Angeles. For the past year, the Bike Program has been developing a Bicycle Friendly Business District (BFBD) program to foster a broad and engaging range of bicycle friendly features in business districts or corridors.

- The program aims to provide districts with adequate bicycle facilities including bicycle parking and repair stations, bikeways, creating maps of the bikeway network, installing signage, and facilitating bicycle wayfinding. By cultivating bicycle friendly business practices in local businesses and developing local business districts to welcome patrons on bicycles, these districts seek to build community, increase physical activity, and make streets less congested while supporting Los Angeles neighborhood businesses.

- A BFBD is a partnership between the City, neighborhood and business organizations, and local businesses that improves a business district’s Bicycle Friendliness through bicycle infrastructure and local business promotions to people travelling by bicycle. The district encourages and promotes short, local trips, especially for shopping, dining and recreation.

- The BFBD program complements complete streets and traffic calming objectives in order to capture local dollars and further neighborhood development in Los Angeles. Districts cooperate with the LADOT, the Council Office, and local community partners to implement services already offered free of charge through the LADOT Bike Program. These services, infrastructure, and other program elements combine with local investment in bicycle amenities and programs privately funded by neighborhood and business partners.

The pilot targets Northeast LA’s primary business corridors: Colorado Boulevard, York Boulevard, Eagle Rock Boulevard, and N. Figueroa Street. The area was selected for study because of its recent additions of bicycle infrastructure, including:

• The implementation of a Road Diet, Bike Lanes, and the City’s first Bike Corral on York Boulevard

• The completion of Bike Lanes on Eagle Rock Boulevard

• The implementation of a Road Diet, Buffered Bike Lanes, and Pedestrian safety enhancements on Colorado Boulevard

• The conceptual plans for Bike Lanes on N. Figueroa Street

.....


















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  #1072  
Old Posted Feb 20, 2014, 8:30 PM
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  #1073  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2014, 9:52 PM
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As a truck driver who drives thru NYC/Phila/Balt on a daily basis, bike lanes can be difficult for business activity when getting deliveries. I deliver to large pharmacy chain locations throughout the midatlantic and can say that that theintroduction of bike lanes has made regular delivery operations very difficult in some locations. For example, i deliver to a store on 6th ave in brooklyn. What was once a twolane one way street has been changed to one bike lane, one vehicle travel lane, and one parking lane. The store now cannot block one travellane to get their delivery or they face the wrath of cyclists. They cannot get overnight deliveries because of the noise. Now they are forced to have the driver pull down a small side street to get their product off the truck. Then when the driver leaves he must back a 48 ft trailer across traffic putting many more variables of danger into place. Maybe what is needed is special zones where businesses can receive tbeir goods in bike lanes like they do for loading zones in parking areas.
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  #1074  
Old Posted Feb 21, 2014, 10:01 PM
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Maybe what is needed is special zones where businesses can receive tbeir goods in bike lanes like they do for loading zones in parking areas.
Or the Amazon drone!
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  #1075  
Old Posted Feb 25, 2014, 5:45 PM
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DC lays out its plans for new bikeways in 2014
Construction in 2014 will include M & 1st Street cycletracks, contraflow lanes on G, F, and I Streets, and several standard bike lanes.
http://beyonddc.com/log/?p=6609

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  #1076  
Old Posted Feb 25, 2014, 6:32 PM
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Good to see.

Why can't the National Park Service paint bike lanes for Madison and Jefferson Drive along the Mall? Both roads are wide enough for a vehicle lane and a bike lane. If NPS is willing to consider installing meters and charging for parking along the Mall, they should be willing to put bike lanes there.
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  #1077  
Old Posted Feb 25, 2014, 8:36 PM
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Originally Posted by kilbride102 View Post
As a truck driver who drives thru NYC/Phila/Balt on a daily basis, bike lanes can be difficult for business activity when getting deliveries. I deliver to large pharmacy chain locations throughout the midatlantic and can say that that theintroduction of bike lanes has made regular delivery operations very difficult in some locations. For example, i deliver to a store on 6th ave in brooklyn. What was once a twolane one way street has been changed to one bike lane, one vehicle travel lane, and one parking lane. The store now cannot block one travellane to get their delivery or they face the wrath of cyclists. They cannot get overnight deliveries because of the noise. Now they are forced to have the driver pull down a small side street to get their product off the truck. Then when the driver leaves he must back a 48 ft trailer across traffic putting many more variables of danger into place. Maybe what is needed is special zones where businesses can receive tbeir goods in bike lanes like they do for loading zones in parking areas.
Your truck is an oversized vehicle in New York City: there's a 55' limit, your 48' trailer will certainly put you over.

No, the problem is not that there's no room for your truck in NYC neighbourhoods. The problem is that your truck is there at all, creating a significant hazard for others no matter how good a driver you are. A pharmacy should be getting deliveries in a truck less than half your size, and while there should certainly be parking stalls set aside for commercial loading (2 normal spots will fit any rational city truck), you can't blame cyclists for the lack of open parking spots.
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  #1078  
Old Posted Feb 25, 2014, 8:46 PM
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I sympathize with delivery drivers, who really cannot use an alternate mode and without whom the city wouldn't function. But blaming bike lanes is ridiculous windshield perspective. Blame excessive and unnecessary car traffic & car storage (ie parking). Bikes are part of the solution to this problem, not the cause.
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  #1079  
Old Posted Mar 11, 2014, 4:39 PM
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London's Plan to Move Cyclists to Side Streets

Read More: http://www.theatlanticcities.com/com...-streets/8598/

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After years of planning, London is finally poised to witness a quiet revolution for two-wheeled transport: an exhaustive citywide network of new cycle routes. This overhaul will nonetheless be coming with a substantial twist. As a visitor to the city, you might possibly never come across a single one of the new routes unless you really try. That’s because outside of the center, so many of them will be squirrelled away on streets where people other than residents and delivery vans rarely venture. Dubbed Quietways, these routes (due to start their staggered launch in September and being constructed right now) will stick almost entirely to the back roads.

It may sound like a cop-out, but there’s some intelligent thinking to the scheme that makes it more than a ruse to tidy cyclists away under the carpet. For a start, London’s unique street design suits the idea brilliantly, which is why many London cyclists have used their own, unofficial versions of the networks for years. In the city’s core, streets are often too narrow to allow smooth flowing car traffic anyway, while London’s early love affair with streetcar suburbia means that it has nearly endless leafy streets for cyclists to weave through. The purpose of the routes is not to give users a tour of English domestic architecture, of course, but traveling these roads can be a revelation, opening up a handsome, less familiar London full of peace and elegant moderation.

The idea behind making these streets more cycling-friendly is simple, but impressive. As this excellent Cyclists in the City piece from last year details, London cyclists often get snarled up in traffic control systems designed to prevent cars from turning side streets into rat runs. The new Quietways are designed to help bikes avoid these issues by turning one-way streets for cars into two-way streets for bikes, beckoning cyclists along lanes blocked to cars with bollards. Old barriers that sometimes force riders to dismount will be smoothed away, while road markings will be made clearer.

The lanes’ creators are also thinking about how bikes will interact with other traffic. To lessen the jarring screech and surge typical of city cars hitting intersection after intersection, traffic lights will be reduced in favor of raised, speed table pedestrian crossings (possibly with Belisha Beacons), which are thought to be better at slowing cars while keeping streets free flowing. Yet to be finalized, a provisional, flawed map (posted below) of the lane plan for central London alone shows that, even without fully segregated lanes, there’s ambition at work here. Intuitive, step-by step improvements like this are the sort of thing that make city cycling tenable.

.....





Remove a lane to improve traffic? Expert explains his Calgary cycle track proposal

Read More: http://blogs.calgaryherald.com/2014/...rack-proposal/

Quote:
The guffaws were deafening. Remove a lane on a busy road, and traffic chaos won’t ensue? Riiiiight. --- That has been one of the more common (and polite) reactions to part of a proposal that will go before City Council in April to build a network of downtown cycle tracks.

- Doubts about the idea turned to outright skepticism when a traffic study was presented as part of the proposal that said the cycle track would lead to an increase in travel time on 1st Street by a mere 30 to 60 seconds during the evening commute. Many people who ride their bikes to work downtown have said that small increase in time is a reasonable cost to pay for a safe route in a prime location. But they aren’t the ones sitting in traffic: Many motorists have expressed doubts about the report.

- Rock Miller works as a transportation planner and traffic engineer with Stantec in Irvine, Calif., and is a specialist in designing for cars, pedestrians and bicycles. He spoke in Calgary last summer as part of a panel of of visiting bicycle experts at an event hosted by the City of Calgary. He was hired by the city to create the traffic report (here’s some information on his report). He seems to be a very nice guy, and took some time this week to explain the thinking that went into it.

- Miller said he understands the skepticism around the report, but he defended the study. In fact, he went even farther, saying that estimate of a 30-60 second delay may be too conservative. He thinks travels times may actually improve once the cycle track is put in. Seriously.

- First of all, the road has the capacity for more traffic. If you don’t believe it, Miller recommended going to stand on the corner of 1 Street S.E. somewhere around 6th or 7th Avenue during a typical rush hour. Watch cars moving through the green light, and count the seconds between the time the last car goes through the green light and it turns red. I did this on Thursday, and counted four or five seconds most times. That’s extra capacity. That means the road can handle more cars. The backups in traffic in this area tend to be caused, not by the volume of cars on the road, he said, rather by the red lights.

- “When traffic fills up a block (at a red light), people assume it’s because there’s a lot of traffic, but when it goes green, the traffic moves right through,” Miller told me. “How many more cars could go through (a green light) after the last car gets through? Quite a lot.”

.....
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Braving the Deep, Deadly South on a Bicycle

Read More: http://www.theatlanticcities.com/com...-bicycle/8590/

Quote:
.....

According to a benchmark study, released last year by the National Alliance for Biking and Walking, the states of the southern U.S. are the most dangerous per biker, and per bike mile traveled, by a wide margin. If you bike in South Carolina you are 10 times likelier to be hit and killed by a car than if you bike in Oregon, one of America’s safer states for cyclists. In North Carolina, eight times more likely. In Louisiana, seven. If you bike in Mississippi, that number is close to 13.

- Warm, flat, and scenic, the south should be a bike rider's dream. But its palm trees and hanging moss stand watch over roadways badly in need of dedicated bike lanes, generous road shoulders, and more navigable urban centers. Beaux Jones, a Louisiana bike advocate, explained that apart from New Orleans, the cities in his state have inherited a structure, "that is somewhat antithetical to biking for pleasure or other purposes." In contrast with compact cities like San Francisco or Portland, Baton Rouge “is a city that stretches across 35 miles,” he points out. Few choose to bike it.

- A report on transportation spending by Advocacy Advance, a partner of the Alliance for Biking and Walking, found that the southern states spend the least on biking and walking safety infrastructure as a percentage of their total spending. Over the last few years, Massachusetts directed more than 5 percent of its transportation spending to bicycle and pedestrian facilities. In that same time period Louisiana, North Carolina, Florida, Alabama, South Carolina and Mississippi each devoted one half of one percent.

- How do you increase safety before you increase bikers? Many southern states are rolling out or expanding driver education programs. In North Carolina, representatives from the Department of Transportation say they’ve already seen significant “improved yielding” or road sharing across the Research Triangle as a result of their expanded program, Watch for Me NC.

- But Wilborn insists that education alone will never be enough to make the streets safe for bicycles. “Cycling fatalities are inversely proportional to the amount of money spent on bike infrastructure,” he says. “This is well documented. There is a number of what a state spends—and that number correlates almost exactly with its ranking on fatalities.” If you want to know reason why South Carolina is unsafe, he says, look at how it doesn’t spend its money. Frankly, he adds, “South Carolina does as little as possible.”

.....
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Old Posted Mar 13, 2014, 10:43 PM
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Originally Posted by Mikemike View Post
Your truck is an oversized vehicle in New York City: there's a 55' limit, your 48' trailer will certainly put you over.

No, the problem is not that there's no room for your truck in NYC neighbourhoods. The problem is that your truck is there at all, creating a significant hazard for others no matter how good a driver you are. A pharmacy should be getting deliveries in a truck less than half your size, and while there should certainly be parking stalls set aside for commercial loading (2 normal spots will fit any rational city truck), you can't blame cyclists for the lack of open parking spots.
The trailer limit is 55' that does not include the tractor. You can have a 53' trailer plus any size cab and still be legal. Companies will not send multiple trucks or multiple deliveries to one store it is simply not cost effective. I know my perspective is skewed but there are realities in suppling large cities with goods that people can't wish away bc they don't like the way it is done.

The addition of seperated bike lane eliminated parking/loading area. Most of the time we are instructed to park in bike lane and let the city ticket us. They treat tickets like another cost of doing business similar to tolls and pass those costs to consumers.
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