Studies & Reports : Road Diets

Background Reading

Summary

Nothing and I repeat nothing about road design is indeed ‘AirTight‘. We learned that the hard way with the installation of those now ‘famous‘ road  projects:

  • Dearborn Protected Bike Lane
  • Berteau Greenway
Nikon Coolpix P7800

Nikon Coolpix P7800

Like most anything done by the hand of man it takes someone who actually plans to use the damn thing to tell you whether you missed the mark or not. In photography the Nikon P7800 is considered a classic in design.

It has an incredibly sharp lens and great features but it does not always satisfy folks who do not care of the ‘slow‘ write speed to its memory card.

Bike lanes and general road designs are the same in that they can be great on paper until someone tries to ride the finished product and suddenly the flaws are glaringly obvious.

Angie Schmitt is given to overselling things. Her most memorable gaff was calling the collision between a bike and a car (in which the bike ran into the passenger side rear quarter panel of the car) an instance in which the car hit the bicyclist. I suppose she must feel the same way about the two Central Park accidents in which pedestrians died a the hands of cyclists as yet more incidents in which a bicycle was struck by an indifferent roadway companion.

Road Diets Cannot Be Disguised

Chicago's Cycling Movement Issues A Leftist Manifesto

Chicago’s Cycling Movement Issues A Leftist Manifesto

As one of the journalists wrote recently when trying to describe the problem in introducing Road Diets to the public, you simply cannot frame the argument as bike vs. car and ever hope to win the approval of drivers. And yet that is exactly what we do time and again.

We are about as dumb in the persuasion department as Sarah Palin. She confronts Liberals and taunts them mercilessly because she believes that history is on her side.

Evidently the Urban Cyclists of Chicago feel the same way. It is not their most endearing quality. But one side or the other is about to learn a very valuable lesson in political persuasion in the coming election cycle results.

Cheap Is Going To Be The Operative Word

With the U. S. Highway Trust Fund down to point where it is indistinguishable from my bank account things are suddenly going to ‘get tight‘.

What might have been a chance to bring up ‘road diets‘ will suddenly become discussions about how to reduce the ‘Speed Limit to 20 MPH‘.

The slogan ‘Twenty Is Plenty‘ will become popular amongst those who see the real culprit the speed of the automobiles and not the shear numbers of them.

I happen to be on that side of the ledger. Speed is the problem. Trying to sneak into the situation a re-configuration of the roadway so as to deliberately discourage drivers is about as honest an approach as lining the bike lanes with sewer grates for miles on end that have their slots running parallel to the curb.