Feb 242014
 

Five County Council members have signed on to a letter by Roger Berliner asking for a cost estimate of clearing snow on the Capital Crescent Trail, with an eye towards covering it in the county operating budget this year.  This is something cyclists have been requesting for years, but the requests (like bikes in the snow) never got much traction.   The letter is directed to county DOT and the Parks Department, though the latter department owns the trail. Also, Councilmember Hans Riemer has asked DOT to draft a plan for better snow removal from sidewalks.  Forcing pedestrians to walk in the street because plows have dumped snow onto sidewalks is unacceptable.  A local pedestrian was killed in recent years doing […]

Jan 182014
 

County Councilmembers Roger Berliner and Hans Riemer have introduced a council bill to change county road standards in urban areas to better serve pedestrians and bicyclists.  Bill 33-13 seeks to 1) reduce car speeds, thereby making pedestrians and bicyclists safer, 2) stipulate certain road features to improve pedestrian safety and access, especially at crosswalks, and 3) better accommodate new technology including bike sharing.  Roger Berliner briefly summarizes the bill here. Whenever roads are rebuilt or in some cases resurfaced, engineers can choose from a toolkit of improvements designed to make urban areas safer for biking and walking.  The tools include everything from curb extensions (aka bulbouts or neckdowns) that make crosswalks shorter to HAWK beacons that blink when a pedestrian […]

Feb 112013
 
Maryland's mandatory helmet law a disaster for biking

A bill before the Maryland House of Delegates would require everyone riding a bike to wear a helmet, no matter how short their trip.    If the bill passes, it would probably kill BikeShare and do a great deal to discourage cycling.  Capital BikeShare, now coming to Montgomery County, is inducing the county to invest in more bike infrastructure and will allow many more bike trips. The county’s transit oriented communities (including Bicycle and Pedestrian Priority Areas designated by the state) rely on bicycling and walking to reduce traffic.  But this bill would undermine it all. Update on April 25 2013: The bill did not pass. Do Maryland legislators really think they know more about bicycling than the Danish and […]

Sep 042012
 
Wisconsin Avenue "Green Mile" Path - new design

There is an updated design of the “Green Mile” shared use path along MD 355 (Wisconsin Ave.) north of Friendship Heights.  The design isn’t final by any means, but it’s been updated to address concerns over tree removal expressed by the Little Falls Watershed Alliance (LFWA).  The State Highway Administration (SHA) is still calling it a sidewalk, though it’s meant to be a shared use path per county master plan.  See the links at the bottom of this post for the design diagrams. A very serious problem with the new design is that the path would only be 5′ wide with no buffer separating it from Wisconsin Ave. for the southernmost 250 feet of the project (from Grafton St. to […]

 Posted by at 3:02 pm on Sep 4, 2012  Comments Off on Wisconsin Avenue “Green Mile” Path – new design
Aug 282012
 
"Bikes May Use Full Lane" signs going up in Maryland

The Maryland State Highway Administration (SHA) is now installing “Bicycles May Use Full Lane” (BMUFL) signs around Montgomery and Prince George’s counties. Maryland SHA’s written guidance for use of these signs is in this three page document.  That document leaves a lot of gaps, but SHA’s traffic and safety director supplied more depth in an interview with Jim Titus of WABA.  For more from Jim, see his post on Greater Greater Washington. SHA’s primary guidance states that BMUFL signs may be used on roads where the usable space for the cyclist in the right lane is 13 feet or narrower.  Usable means, for example, that gutters don’t count as part of the 13 feet (gutters are typically 12-16 inches wide).  […]