Bicycle Infrastructure

Roads - Rails - Sidewalks - Bikeways
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woofner
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby woofner » July 23rd, 2013, 11:24 am

Yes, the LRT trail becomes crushed limestone west of Shady Oak. It's pretty well maintained, though, so I wouldn't worry too much about blowing your tire, I'd worry more about the shitty wayfinding. Luce Line is blacktop quite far out, it looks like to Vicksburg, though I've never made it that far. There are a couple woodplank bridges on it at Medicine Lake that may be more of a blowout risk than any crushed limestone, however. Here again you may have a greater risk of getting lost in an endless suburban labyrinth.
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mattaudio
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby mattaudio » July 23rd, 2013, 11:48 am

eazydp wrote:If I ruled the world, I would fix one dangerous intersection in particular. This tiny little connection on 22nd Ave from M'haha to Lake Nokomis Parkway is always tricky to navigate for everyone (http://goo.gl/maps/ho3YF). I'd prefer the move it slightly up the street so it does not intersect 2 ped and the main bike trail (http://goo.gl/maps/6wc0e).
This is right near my house, and I agree it's a problem. Maybe we could have the world's first diverging diamond interchange between bicycle trails and parkways?

Tom H.
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby Tom H. » July 23rd, 2013, 12:31 pm

redisciple wrote:Yes, the LRT trail becomes crushed limestone west of Shady Oak. It's pretty well maintained, though, so I wouldn't worry too much about blowing your tire, I'd worry more about the shitty wayfinding. Luce Line is blacktop quite far out, it looks like to Vicksburg, though I've never made it that far. There are a couple woodplank bridges on it at Medicine Lake that may be more of a blowout risk than any crushed limestone, however. Here again you may have a greater risk of getting lost in an endless suburban labyrinth.
I've actually found the wayfinding along the LRT trail to be quite good. There are at least a few locations in Eden Prairie with large (roughly 8' x 8') signs with satellite images of the surrounding areas with roads, streets and trails marked, along with distance markers in both directions to control locations (DT Hopkins is one control location; I can't remember what the next one is to the west).

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woofner
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby woofner » July 23rd, 2013, 2:05 pm

I guess wayfinding is the wrong word, you're right that Three Rivers does a great job with wayfinding. My problem is that the intersections with streets are rarely marked, so I don't know when I come to a street with a set of beige townhomes and a rambler set way back if it's Leaftree Ln or Treeleaf Dr.
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby twincitizen » July 23rd, 2013, 2:43 pm

MinnPost's Karen Boros sums up the Presidents'/Stone Arch and Southern Connection bike boulevards, with maps!

http://www.minnpost.com/political-agend ... ng-devices

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woofner
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby woofner » July 23rd, 2013, 3:23 pm

Disclaimer: I like these projects and am happy they are being implemented :P :P :P Especially the detector at 6th & 4th SE :)

However, I'm nervous that they appear to be encouraging sidewalk riding on East Hennepin between 5th & Pierce. The roadway is 50' wide there, I'd think they could slim the general traffic lanes to 10' and fit in two 5' bike lanes for this short segment. It is probably worth it to make trucks and buses slow down and drive carefully for a half mile rather than confuse people about where the appropriate place to ride is.

Edit: But these are great projects and everything is becoming wonderful thanks to Great Leader! :) :)
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Viktor Vaughn
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby Viktor Vaughn » July 23rd, 2013, 4:21 pm

East Hennepin between 5th Ave SE and Pierce is part of my daily bike commute. Every day I see other bikers making that little jog to get between Southeast & Northeast. When I first started this commute, I would bike on the street. But I soon learned that biking on the sidewalk is much preferable. This is about the only time I ride on the sidewalk (except when I have my 2 year old in the bike trailer). I've rarely seen pedestrians on this section of East Hennepin.

This area of East Hennepin is very desolate. Surrounding buildings are industrial and set way back from the street. The road dips down and back up to clear under the railroad bridge without any intersections between the top of the hill on either side. Even with only two lanes each way, it seems like the perfect location for semi trucks to blast through at 50 miles and hour. I see your point about narrowing lanes to slow traffic but I'd prefer an adjacent sidepath at sidewalk height over bike lanes. All the other cues are still going to tell drivers to speed. Crosswalks at the top of the hill on either side of the bridge would be welcome.

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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby fehler » July 24th, 2013, 8:41 am

I don't know if the "Southern Bike Connection" deserves its own post or not. But I'm interested in what is described as a "Mini traffic circle, 4-way yield". Our daycare is on one of the corners this will affect, and I'm wondering if she's going to lose some yard over this.

http://www.minnpost.com/political-agend ... ng-devices

mattaudio
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby mattaudio » July 24th, 2013, 8:49 am

I live a half block from one of these planned circles. They aren't messing with the existing curb/gutter. It's just a new poured curb circle about 8' in diameter in the middle, sort of like this: http://goo.gl/maps/WmO4j

Regarding this, I've also reached out to the neighborhood group and Shaun Murphy to try and coordinate planting/beautification of the circles and refuge islands in the Northrop neighborhood. If anyone is interested in collaborating on this (such as your daycare person) let me know. Based on previous examples, I think the city plants a tree in the circle, but I'm not sure how much else they do. The refuge islands will be poured concrete, but some large planters with shrubs and flowers on top of the concrete could go a long ways towards beautification.

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woofner
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby woofner » July 24th, 2013, 10:57 am

Viktor Vaughn wrote: I see your point about narrowing lanes to slow traffic but I'd prefer an adjacent sidepath at sidewalk height over bike lanes. All the other cues are still going to tell drivers to speed.
I'd be comfortable with some paint on the sidewalk pretending to designate a cycle track. But as someone who has been yelled at by cops to bike on the sidewalk instead of the street, I'm uncomfortable with the city directing cyclists to bike on the sidewalk anywhere.
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woofner
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby woofner » August 1st, 2013, 4:02 pm

orangevening wrote:I think the theory behind why cycle tracks are good for businesses is that by making the street more walkable and bikeable businesses are more visible (for lack of better term). One is not flying by in a car (or bus for that matter) to get though instead (relatively) slowly meandering by actually experiencing what the street has to offer.
PhilmerPhil wrote:Don't really want to get into this too in depth right now, but just wanted to add that I think the placemaking that cycle tracks could bring to Washington Ave should not be ignored.
Actually this is a question I've long had about local activists' vision for cycle tracks. Are they supposed to be a 'bike-safe' sidewalk space or a high-quality facility intended for travel throughout the region? There is a big difference, since an facility where people are encouraged to ride slowly and stop frequently is not very compatible with a facility that encourages faster riding and limited stopping. Reuben Collins kind of got at this question in this post:

http://velotraffic.com/2013/04/bikeway- ... nal-class/

When I think of a cycle track, I think of a Montreal-style facility that is clearly meant for travel between neighborhoods, but are you guys thinking more of as what Reuben cites on the Mpls Bike Plan as a Neighborhood Bikeway? If so, I'd caution you that that type of cycle track is not actually very popular in central Europe, although that may have to do with implementation.
orangevening wrote:Connected to what?
When considering connectivity, you have to remember that the 5 blocks of Washington Ave that may be rebuilt with a cycle track will be finished in 2014, at which point the Bluff St trail will make 2nd St a much better connector between the East Bank and Downtown (I believe that a ramp at Gateway Park will be built as part of the Bluff St Trail). The remainder of Washington to 35W is not likely to be reconstructed until later this decade (if then), so by that time the simpler and more logical planned connection between the LRT trail and the West Bank could be complete. This would go through Currie Park and along the Trench to 3rd St S all along publicly-owned land. The only tricky part would be how to treat the intersection with Cedar. Maybe you started biking downtown after the LRT trail was closed for construction, but it's actually a much nicer connection to Downtown than the current goat path, and it spits you out onto the 3rd St lane which is actually on the right side. It's true that technically once you're at 7 Corners you could go on to Cedar Riverside or the West Bank, and hopefully with the 4-to-3 conversion of Cedar it will be better to ride there, but right now it's kind of shitty riding if you ask me. Cars flying everywhere and a stoplight every hundred yards.

As for connectivity to the north, Washington north of Hennepin is really terrible to bike on. It is just as overbuilt as the rest of the street, but there is no median here (except one block) to make motorists feel constrained and moderate their speed. It can and should be restriped with bike lanes, but even then will only likely connect as far as Plymouth. 2nd, on the other hand, goes more or less all the way to the North Mississippi Trails. The 3rd/4th lanes don't have a great connection to the north, and don't even reach all the way to the overpass over the cut, but it would be easy to extend them there and then to the 7th St lanes. I've also suggested an Olson bikeway, and have a hard time understanding why that's not in the pipeline. So 3rd/4th have far more potential than Washington for northern connectivity.
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orangevening
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby orangevening » August 1st, 2013, 9:47 pm

redisciple wrote: Actually this is a question I've long had about local activists' vision for cycle tracks. Are they supposed to be a 'bike-safe' sidewalk space or a high-quality facility intended for travel throughout the region? There is a big difference, since an facility where people are encouraged to ride slowly and stop frequently is not very compatible with a facility that encourages faster riding and limited stopping. Reuben Collins kind of got at this question in this post:
When I think of a cycle track, I think of a Montreal-style facility that is clearly meant for travel between neighborhoods, but are you guys thinking more of as what Reuben cites on the Mpls Bike Plan as a Neighborhood Bikeway? If so, I'd caution you that that type of cycle track is not actually very popular in central Europe, although that may have to do with implementation.
My vote would a slower, more localized focused cycle track. More tipped to the sidewalk than to the road. I like the rendering that have been done on the project. Like you said 2nd will be better for thur traffic to the U or river trails, Washington for things on Washington and to 7 corners/ Cedar-Riverside.






When considering connectivity, you have to remember that the 5 blocks of Washington Ave that may be rebuilt with a cycle track will be finished in 2014, at which point the Bluff St trail will make 2nd St a much better connector between the East Bank and Downtown (I believe that a ramp at Gateway Park will be built as part of the Bluff St Trail). The remainder of Washington to 35W is not likely to be reconstructed until later this decade (if then), so by that time the simpler and more logical planned connection between the LRT trail and the West Bank could be complete. This would go through Currie Park and along the Trench to 3rd St S all along publicly-owned land. The only tricky part would be how to treat the intersection with Cedar.
I couldn't picture what you are talking about and even looking at a bike map I'm confused. This sounds like a major project and past the scope of what we are talking about. Is this a planned project I have never heard of?
Maybe you started biking downtown after the LRT trail was closed for construction, but it's actually a much nicer connection to Downtown than the current goat path, and it spits you out onto the 3rd St lane which is actually on the right side.
I've been biking in Minneapolis on and off since 1997. I've been on the now-under-construction-LRT-trail many times.
It's true that technically once you're at 7 Corners you could go on to Cedar Riverside or the West Bank, and hopefully with the 4-to-3 conversion of Cedar it will be better to ride there, but right now it's kind of shitty riding if you ask me. Cars flying everywhere and a stoplight every hundred yards.
Yes Cedar is crappy to bike on, but that really wasn't my point. It was that Washington is more connected to areas that people need to get to than 3rd street.
As for connectivity to the north, Washington north of Hennepin is really terrible to bike on. It is just as overbuilt as the rest of the street, but there is no median here (except one block) to make motorists feel constrained and moderate their speed. It can and should be restriped with bike lanes, but even then will only likely connect as far as Plymouth. 2nd, on the other hand, goes more or less all the way to the North Mississippi Trails. The 3rd/4th lanes don't have a great connection to the north, and don't even reach all the way to the overpass over the cut, but it would be easy to extend them there and then to the 7th St lanes. I've also suggested an Olson bikeway, and have a hard time understanding why that's not in the pipeline. So 3rd/4th have far more potential than Washington for northern connectivity.
Sigh. I thought we were talking about Washington ave east- the part were they are considering putting a cycle track on. 3rd and 4th don't even go though past 2nd ave north. You don't think it would be easier to reconstruction Washington going north, north of Hennipen [sic] than to make new bridges or what ever we need to do to connect them to 7th street?

orangevening
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby orangevening » August 2nd, 2013, 8:46 am

Long article about cycle tracks in momentum mag

http://momentummag.com/features/the-ris ... bike-lane/

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woofner
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby woofner » August 4th, 2013, 10:19 am

orangevening wrote: My vote would a slower, more localized focused cycle track. More tipped to the sidewalk than to the road. I like the rendering that have been done on the project. Like you said 2nd will be better for thur traffic to the U or river trails, Washington for things on Washington and to 7 corners/ Cedar-Riverside.
If the cycle track itself is intended to be a destination, then connectivity is less important. The people who like to ride back and forth through 5 blocks of renewal-scarred cityscape will find a way to do so. In that case, though, I question the wisdom of selecting this stretch of Washington Ave to be a test case as there's almost no retail along it.
orangevening wrote:This sounds like a major project and past the scope of what we are talking about. Is this a planned project I have never heard of?
See page 4 of this pdf:

http://www.minneapolismn.gov/www/groups ... 265058.pdf

It's a bit different than I remember- I thought it would meet Cedar at grade but it looks like it's envisioned to cross under Cedar & 19th, presumably to connect again with the West Bank behind Anderson Hall, which right now would be a pain but could be made fairly seamless once Anderson is rebuilt. I don't really get how they think the buses will work in this scenario, though - presumably the EB routes would just stay in the trench? Personally I'd prefer the surface route because I go more often to the Cedar Riverside businesses than to the U of M West Bank, but I can see the advantages of avoiding the intersections at Cedar & 19th.
orangevening wrote:Yes Cedar is crappy to bike on, but that really wasn't my point. It was that Washington is more connected to areas that people need to get to than 3rd street.
No, Washington ends at Cedar. That is why Cedar is relevant. Again, hopefully lanes will be added to Cedar at least north of Riverside as part of this project, but there are certainly competing priorities for any recaptured roadway space.
orangevening wrote: Sigh. I thought we were talking about Washington ave east- the part were they are considering putting a cycle track on.
Again, there is no current plan to reconstruct Washington between 5th & 35W. I think it was built in the 80s, so I kind of doubt it will be a priority, although maybe there could be a project to move the curbs to accommodate a cycle track.
orangevening wrote:3rd and 4th don't even go though past 2nd ave north. You don't think it would be easier to reconstruction Washington going north, north of Hennipen [sic] than to make new bridges or what ever we need to do to connect them to 7th street?
There is in fact a ped bridge at 3rd St connecting 2nd & 5th Aves N. It's only about 8' wide, so it would need to be widened to accommodate a cycle facility. But yes, I hold out more hope that this bridge could be widened 4' than that the County would rebuild Washington Ave N again only 10 years after it was last rebuilt.
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nordeast homer
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby nordeast homer » August 6th, 2013, 10:25 am

Did anyone post this article from USA Today? http://blogs.citypages.com/dressingroom ... e_path.php

OPAFiets1
Block E
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby OPAFiets1 » August 8th, 2013, 8:53 pm

orangevening wrote:Long article about cycle tracks in momentum mag http://momentummag.com/features/the-ris ... bike-lane/
I was a bit surprised and disappointed that Angie seemed to approve of the NACTO Design Guide which supports such poor and dangerous designs as bike boxes and combined bicycle/turn lanes and which are basically paint in support of vehicular cycling. Otherwise, good article.

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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby twincitizen » August 9th, 2013, 1:47 pm

St. Paul bike improvements roundup: http://www.twincities.com/stpaul/ci_23826316

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woofner
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby woofner » August 18th, 2013, 12:26 pm

While driving down 4th St SE yesterday I noticed that there is a right-side bike lane striped between 35W and I think Central now. I'm pretty sure this was not striped immediately after the resurfacing a few months ago and in fact I think it may have been striped in the last couple weeks. Anyone have the story on this sucker? Did they also restripe the segment east of 35W, which had a bike lane before but on the left side? (I rode it on Monday at which point it was still on the left.) If not, who the fuck thought it was a good idea to have cyclists move from the left to the right side at the 35W interchange, i.e. the most busy intersection on 4th St SE?
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widin007
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby widin007 » August 18th, 2013, 6:31 pm

They just did the striping like a month or so ago and no they left the other one on the left, leading to much chaos going over 35 with confused bikes and cars all over the road. I don't know if they plan on moving the other bike lane or not but right now its pretty terrible.

dingo
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby dingo » August 19th, 2013, 10:01 am

I think that this makes the most sense in this thread.

Here is a very interesting TED talk about streets and more detail Bike lane designs.

http://mashable.com/2013/08/14/bike-lane-design/


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