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Old 08-16-2016, 12:32 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by darkeconomist View Post

So, what happens when people ride together? Not even, necessarily, a riding club, but maybe just two people who commute together. Would we expect two people walking together to walk staggered or single-file? Would we expect two people in a car to sit one behind the other? No, but in the case of riding in a bike lane, that is necessarily the case (if there is any traffic in the vehicle lane).

So, in the case of what's happening where UNC lives, it is very easy to overwhelm the available capacity. And, as with anytime the demand for infrastructure exceeds the supply, there are negative overflow effects.
Where I live most sidewalks(outside of Downtown) only have enough room for two people to walk side by side provided there is no one coming in the other direction. If there is then they must stage. A car can seat up to 4 people, so how they sit in the vehicle does not matter(i.e. My car does not shrink when not filled). The bikes could easily ride in one lane just like cars drive in the one lane provided.
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Old 08-17-2016, 12:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
Where I live most sidewalks(outside of Downtown) only have enough room for two people to walk side by side provided there is no one coming in the other direction. If there is then they must stage. A car can seat up to 4 people, so how they sit in the vehicle does not matter(i.e. My car does not shrink when not filled). The bikes could easily ride in one lane just like cars drive in the one lane provided.
You're really missing the point I was making about what we've decided is "enough" space for different modes. We're social creatures and, when we're doing something together, we prefer to travel side-by-side. Cyclists can't do that on a well-trafficked roadway. The counter that pedestrians sometimes have to line up doesn't actually change the fact that, generally, people prefer walking together side-by-side and naturally revert to that as the situation allows; that cars can't travel side-by-side is pedantic, responding to the literal idea of 1 vehicle, 1 lane, rather than the reality that, in a car, people get to sit side-by-side.
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Old 08-17-2016, 12:21 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Katarina Witt View Post
Interesting analysis. So what's your solution?
You already know my solution would be to go with whatever makes sense in that context. I don't like one-size-fits-all, once-and-done solutions; they rarely actually solve the problem, which are context-sensitive, what they do solve tends to be an inefficient way to do it, and tend to cause distortions.

In UNC4ME's situation, it would make sense for the local DOT to talk with the bike club/s and figure out what makes this route so popular and if there are changes it could eventually make that would shift them to less contentious routes. And, before anyone thinks that this would be caving to a particular group, this would just be understanding what their customers want, how those wants can be served, and how this fits in to what the organization can provide. That's something every large company does.
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Old 08-17-2016, 03:09 PM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
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Originally Posted by IC_deLight View Post
"red" might mean stop but it doesn't imply that the justice system should be whored out to private vendors, that the accused should be deprived of state and federal constitutional protections, denied trial, denied the right to confront witnesses, denied the right to jury, denied the right to have plaintiff bear the burden of proof beyond a reasonable doubt, and a litany of other protections. Your red light camera analogy is way off base. There are plenty of reasons to protest the camera and fee splitting schemes set up by the likes of Redflex and American Traffic Solutions which go well beyond the scope of this thread.


To the contrary it is really different. It's a criminal offense and you get to make a plea, request a jury, engage in discovery, confront the witness, and have a trial. You can even appeal if the trial doesn't work out. Why should bikers get due process while drivers are denied the same?
I was not talking about the legal and administrative processes involved at all, you brought this up. I agree with you that it's an issue beyond this thread.

Clearly I was pointing out the anger, outrage over suddenly being cited or called out for something is a bad habit and illegal that we've gotten away with for a long time. Whether it's on the bike or behind the windshield. I would submit that your post further illustrates my point.
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Old 08-17-2016, 09:30 PM
 
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Originally Posted by darkeconomist View Post
You're really missing the point I was making about what we've decided is "enough" space for different modes. We're social creatures and, when we're doing something together, we prefer to travel side-by-side. Cyclists can't do that on a well-trafficked roadway. The counter that pedestrians sometimes have to line up doesn't actually change the fact that, generally, people prefer walking together side-by-side and naturally revert to that as the situation allows; that cars can't travel side-by-side is pedantic, responding to the literal idea of 1 vehicle, 1 lane, rather than the reality that, in a car, people get to sit side-by-side.
Enough space isn't determined by social needs. It is determined by how much space is available and needed. The bicyclists could have formed an single line and made the commute and if they were not commuting maybe they need to head into a bike path in a park or something. People may prefer walking side to side, but again there has to be enough space.
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Old 08-18-2016, 03:11 PM
 
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
Enough space isn't determined by social needs. It is determined by how much space is available and needed. The bicyclists could have formed an single line and made the commute and if they were not commuting maybe they need to head into a bike path in a park or something. People may prefer walking side to side, but again there has to be enough space.
"Enough" space, even in this world of scarcity, is certainly determined by the social norms of those with the power to make those choices. What counts as "enough" isn't static or absolute, but a determination of how we divvy up the space that we have.
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Old 08-18-2016, 08:40 PM
 
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Originally Posted by darkeconomist View Post
"Enough" space, even in this world of scarcity, is certainly determined by the social norms of those with the power to make those choices. What counts as "enough" isn't static or absolute, but a determination of how we divvy up the space that we have.
Those norms were determined by needs such as need to fit a fire truck down the street, need to move over sized loads through the area and need to connect distant points for fast commuting.
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Old 08-19-2016, 11:33 AM
 
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
Those norms were determined by needs such as need to fit a fire truck down the street, need to move over sized loads through the area and need to connect distant points for fast commuting.
It sounds nice to say that how we built our infrastructure was logical and blind to the preferences of the decision makers, but it would be incorrect.

Our lane sizing, for instance, was expanded to 12', then 14', on the expectation that long sightlines would make our streets safer for everyone; this simply isn't true, and there is tons of evidence that long sightlines have made our streets faster and more dangerous. Let expressways and highways be expressways and highways, but those rules don't work at the level of the neighborhood street and, worse, are counter-productive.

You bring up fire engines, but, even here, the sizing of the engines themselves is based on the preconceived notions of the firechief, even when evidence suggests there is an expensive mismatch between the type of calls that predominantly come in and the type of service the engine is built for.

You also bring up oversized loads. Our lanes should be sized according to actual need. We should ask "Does it make sense for this particular roadway to be sized for oversized loads?"

Speaking of need, city DOTs rarely have a comprehensive understanding of it. Resources are simply too scarce to do that many traffic counts. Most city's understanding of need is heavily weighted toward anecdotes and incidents, putting resources where there are the loudest complaints.
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Old 08-19-2016, 02:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by darkeconomist View Post
It sounds nice to say that how we built our infrastructure was logical and blind to the preferences of the decision makers, but it would be incorrect.

Our lane sizing, for instance, was expanded to 12', then 14', on the expectation that long sightlines would make our streets safer for everyone; this simply isn't true, and there is tons of evidence that long sightlines have made our streets faster and more dangerous. Let expressways and highways be expressways and highways, but those rules don't work at the level of the neighborhood street and, worse, are counter-productive.
The main reason to increase lane width is to speed up traffic.

Quote:

You bring up fire engines, but, even here, the sizing of the engines themselves is based on the preconceived notions of the firechief, even when evidence suggests there is an expensive mismatch between the type of calls that predominantly come in and the type of service the engine is built for.
Large tall buildings also catch fire. They are sized to handle more than just a little kitchen fire.

Quote:
You also bring up oversized loads. Our lanes should be sized according to actual need. We should ask "Does it make sense for this particular roadway to be sized for oversized loads?"
It does if you need for pieces of factory equipment or construction equpment to get from place to place.
Quote:
Speaking of need, city DOTs rarely have a comprehensive understanding of it. Resources are simply too scarce to do that many traffic counts. Most city's understanding of need is heavily weighted toward anecdotes and incidents, putting resources where there are the loudest complaints.
Traffic counts are only just a messure and incidents are a sign there may be something wrong. Where i use to live trucks getting stuck under a viaduct that was desigen too low was a common problem until the street was improved. Likewise a bridge sized too small to allow more than one bus in a single direction was likewise improved.
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Old 08-20-2016, 02:19 PM
 
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Originally Posted by chirack View Post
The main reason to increase lane width is to speed up traffic.



Large tall buildings also catch fire. They are sized to handle more than just a little kitchen fire.



It does if you need for pieces of factory equipment or construction equpment to get from place to place.


Traffic counts are only just a messure and incidents are a sign there may be something wrong. Where i use to live trucks getting stuck under a viaduct that was desigen too low was a common problem until the street was improved. Likewise a bridge sized too small to allow more than one bus in a single direction was likewise improved.
And I agree that these all make sense in a given context. But that's not how they've been applied, and I'm speaking to actual application, not hypothetical best use.
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