Bicycle Infrastructure

Roads - Rails - Sidewalks - Bikeways
intercomnut
Rice Park
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby intercomnut » April 14th, 2016, 8:00 am

twincitizen wrote:For 11th Ave, there has to be a better way to do the block adjacent to the park (W River Pkwy to 2nd St). I don't know what it is, but there has to be something...

Is this a mill & overlay project? Or just a restriping?
As far as I know, this project exists solely to put in the protected bikeway, so it's just a restriping.

EOst
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby EOst » April 14th, 2016, 8:05 am

Silophant wrote:So... How are these parking-protected bike lanes going to be better than the 1st Ave versions that everyone hates?
The problem with 1st is that the combination of only-sometimes-parking and unclear pavement markings make it unclear for drivers where and when they can park. That shouldn't be a problem here, where there should usually be a couple cars parked (to model the correct position) and a wide buffer/bollards between parking and bike lane besides.

acs
Wells Fargo Center
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby acs » April 14th, 2016, 8:18 am

The bigger problem with 1st is the narrowed sidewalk in a heavily pedrstrian area combined with and an inability for taxis to park or pull up directly to the curb for pickup. I don't think east Franklin has those issues.

xandrex
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby xandrex » April 14th, 2016, 8:31 am

The areas of 1st Avenue that have the most issue are those without the bollards. If this has them along the whole way, I wouldn’t think it would be an issue.

acs
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby acs » April 14th, 2016, 8:35 am

That's completely the opposite of what I'm hearing from the property owners along the street. No amount of separation between cars and bikes will help because the problem is too much/too confusing separation between pedestrians and cars. That's why the city is looking at making it a regular bike lane with parking against the curb and parklets/pedestrian overflow areas where needed.

BBMplsMN
Nicollet Mall
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby BBMplsMN » April 14th, 2016, 8:39 am

I love biking, but I hate seeing those white bollards. It's the same reaction I get when I see graffiti. The street by Lakewood Cemetery where it meets Lake Calhoun is the worst. I wish there was a more elegant (that wouldn't break the bank) solution.

PhilmerPhil
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby PhilmerPhil » April 14th, 2016, 8:54 am

I'm in the same boat regarding bollards. They're ugly. I appreciate that they help fuel the rapid growth of protected bike lanes, but they really need to be viewed as temporary, to be replaced with something more attractive upon a street reconstruction.

But I also wonder why the city isn't using a narrow concrete barrier more throughout the city like on Oak Street. It's actual protection, and it looks great! I wonder what the cost difference was as opposed to regular bollards.

Image

cascadia
Block E
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby cascadia » April 14th, 2016, 9:04 am

PhilmerPhil wrote: But I also wonder why the city isn't using a narrow concrete barrier more throughout the city like on Oak Street. It's actual protection, and it looks great! I wonder what the cost difference was as opposed to regular bollards.
The excuse I've seen from other cities I've lived in (I'm relocating to MSP from Denver) range from "something something snowplows" to "something something cars hop curbs" or stormwater issues. They're usually all lame excuses, IMHO.

acs
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby acs » April 14th, 2016, 9:05 am

Is that like a jersey barrier or is it attached to the roadway? Sorry, never been on oak street before.

MNdible
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby MNdible » April 14th, 2016, 9:19 am

I'd say eliminate all of the parking south of Washington. North of Washington, it seems they're overthinking it. Traffic is light enough that it can just be super-calmed and sharrowed or a standard bike lane. There's just not that much traffic there.

What they're proposing is an ugly, overly complicated solution.

mattaudio
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby mattaudio » April 14th, 2016, 9:20 am

Yes, those are bolted down. There are plastic variants that are smaller that are often used with plastic bollards (the county seems to be more fond of the plastic).

I agree we need to plan on incremental improvement of our bicycle separation... and not because it benefits bicyclists. Curb extensions would be hugely beneficial in a) facilitating pedestrian crossings and b) slowing the design speed. Imagine if Park and Portland had these? Start with doing every fourth block, then doing every second block, then eventually filling in all blocks. It's really a shame the city botched the design on the 26th and 28th Street bumpouts... that didn't give me confidence that we're heading in the right direction.
Image

cascadia
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby cascadia » April 14th, 2016, 9:21 am

Think curb without a sidewalk. Jersey barriers are much taller. This type of structure is just a raised curb of concrete.

acs
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby acs » April 14th, 2016, 9:33 am

MNdible wrote:I'd say eliminate all of the parking south of Washington. North of Washington, it seems they're overthinking it. Traffic is light enough that it can just be super-calmed and sharrowed or a standard bike lane. There's just not that much traffic there.

What they're proposing is an ugly, overly complicated solution.
We're talking about 1st, right? I think cycletracks at sidewalk level are probably the best way to kill two birds with one stone. They function like big sidewalk extensions when the demand is there, cars can pull-up and drop-off the elderly/impaired directly onto the sidewalk level, and bikers get grade separation from cars regardless of whether there is parking on the outside or not. As long as the separation/marking between the pedestrian and bike areas isn't too obtrusive I think it's a win-win-win. For the same reasons I like the current proposed Hennepin ave design.

intercomnut
Rice Park
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby intercomnut » April 14th, 2016, 10:21 am

PhilmerPhil wrote:I'm in the same boat regarding bollards. They're ugly. I appreciate that they help fuel the rapid growth of protected bike lanes, but they really need to be viewed as temporary, to be replaced with something more attractive upon a street reconstruction.
As far as I can tell from the interactions I've had with planners from the city, they agree with you.
cascadia wrote:The excuse I've seen from other cities I've lived in (I'm relocating to MSP from Denver) range from "something something snowplows" to "something something cars hop curbs" or stormwater issues. They're usually all lame excuses, IMHO.
I remember hearing that Public Works actually pushed for the concrete barrier on Oak Street because it would be easier to plow than the bollards, since with the bollards they have to plow between each bollard along with the lane itself.

I'm pretty sure capital cost really is the deciding factor with bollards vs curbs.

RailBaronYarr
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby RailBaronYarr » April 14th, 2016, 10:24 am

My opinion on the plastic bollards is that they're no more offensive than any number of other things we tolerate in our urban environment. That picture 3 posts up kinda gives a good idea what I'm talking about; sign posts, signs, traffic posts and lights, newspaper boxes, etc, to say nothing of the multiple steel and glass boxes either parked or moving about. Yes, streets like 36th or Oak or any other number of proposed buffered/"protected" bike lanes using bollards aren't as visually cluttered as a Manhattan street, but there are still plenty of ugly things around. I like the low concrete barrier, but there are tradeoffs. The posts are reflective, alerting drivers in the dark not to cross over, and the spacing allows exit points (on 36th St, this allows entering or exiting to the frequent streets and alleys). Long-term, the most elegant solution is obviously the Dutch model, but I'll take the plastic posts for now.
intercomnut wrote:I remember hearing that Public Works actually pushed for the concrete barrier on Oak Street because it would be easier to plow than the bollards, since with the bollards they have to plow between each bollard along with the lane itself.
If this is the case, they did a poor job of executing. This winter, the 36th St bikeway had snow/ice piled up in the post/buffer area for basically the whole stretch. I filled out the winter maintenance evaluation thing for the city every other week and it was my number one observation every time.

twincitizen
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby twincitizen » April 14th, 2016, 10:44 am

MNdible wrote:I'd say eliminate all of the parking south of Washington. North of Washington, it seems they're overthinking it. Traffic is light enough that it can just be super-calmed and sharrowed or a standard bike lane. There's just not that much traffic there.

What they're proposing is an ugly, overly complicated solution.
This is 11th Avenue you're talking about, right?

If so, I'd agree, particularly the north of Washington part. There's no traffic...just people trying to park at Gold Medal Park and/or Izzy's. I get that there's a desire for PBLs to "connect" West River Parkway to 2nd, Washington, etc., but yeah that's just overthinking things. There is nothing wrong with the standard unprotected bike lanes that exist today between W River Pkwy and 2nd St. I totally understand the need to transition to PBLs as you approach Washington and continue south, as things get hairer, but not between the Parkway and 2nd.

If there must a protected connection between the parkway trail and 2nd St, then wouldn't a better option be something behind the curb? Maybe replace this sidewalk on the eastern edge of Gold Medal Park with a 10-12' wide multi-use path, at least for SB bike travel: https://www.google.com/maps/@44.9772007 ... a=!3m1!1e3

MNdible
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby MNdible » April 14th, 2016, 10:56 am

acs wrote:We're talking about 1st, right?
twincitizen wrote:This is 11th Avenue you're talking about, right?
Yeah, I was talking about 11th. Traffic on 1st also drops off after Washington, but I'm not completely certain I'd apply the same answer there.

EOst
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby EOst » April 14th, 2016, 12:29 pm

twincitizen wrote:There is nothing wrong with the standard unprotected bike lanes that exist today between W River Pkwy and 2nd St. I totally understand the need to transition to PBLs as you approach Washington and continue south, as things get hairer, but not between the Parkway and 2nd.
I disagree. I bike 2nd St through this intersection every day. The few cars there are still surprisingly aggressive!

To a larger point, though, even if normal bike lanes or sharrows would be "enough" to make it theoretically safe, there are still a lot of people who would find those two blocks without a protected bike lane harrowing. When the trade-offs are so few, just go for it.

cascadia
Block E
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby cascadia » April 14th, 2016, 12:52 pm

Sharrows or normal bike lanes are really only good for low-traffic, low-speed residential side streets. Anything more than that and the division of traffic needs to be clearer. I'll leave it to people to decide whether it's because motorists don't respect road-sharing, or because too many cyclists don't respect road-sharing either. In my experience the more separate you can make the traffic, the better. Especially when it is relatively cheap, like a raised curb.

mulad
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Re: Bicycle Infrastructure

Postby mulad » April 15th, 2016, 8:44 am

PhilmerPhil wrote:I'm in the same boat regarding bollards. They're ugly. I appreciate that they help fuel the rapid growth of protected bike lanes, but they really need to be viewed as temporary, to be replaced with something more attractive upon a street reconstruction.

But I also wonder why the city isn't using a narrow concrete barrier more throughout the city like on Oak Street. It's actual protection, and it looks great! I wonder what the cost difference was as opposed to regular bollards.

Image
These are just those concrete bumpers / curbs / blocks / stoppers that are present in parking lots all over -- they're just laid tightly end-to-end. The plastic and rubber ones are fairly cheap, ranging from about $30 to $50 each according to my Googling (probably consistently less than $40 in bulk). Concrete models seem to cost $5-10 more apiece.

The plastic bollards (which I guess are "delineator posts" or "channelizer posts") seem to have a wider range in price. They can be cheaper at less than $20 each, but it looks like they get to be as expensive or more expensive than the bumpers do. Metal bollards definitely appear to be pricier than the bumpers.

I'm not sure about what the mounting hardware costs for the bumpers vs. posts. Looks like the posts can have fairly fancy sunken screw-in bases, which could be nice for removing them in winter, but that's not necessarily something we want anyway (plus I'd be worried about those bases rusting through the winter and making it impossible to put the posts back in again...).

Anyway, the price is probably a wash, or maybe slightly cheaper to go with the bumpers.


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