Vision Zero, how Oslo made progress

Oslo and Washington, DC are roughly the same size. In 2019, the former had zero pedestrian and bicyclist deaths and DC had 14. So what did Oslo do that made the difference?

One thing is that they started with a head start. In 1975 Oslo had 41 traffic deaths and DC had 74. But that doesn't entirely account for them getting to 1 and DC to 27 in 35 years. 

Over the last five years, the city has taken dramatic steps to reduce vehicular traffic in its downtown, including replacing nearly all on-street parking with bike lanes and sidewalks. Major streets have been closed to cars, and congestion pricing raised the fee to drive into the city center, with the goal of making most of downtown car-free by 2019.

Oslo has not only reduced the number of places where it is possible to drive, the city has also lowered the speed limit, which significantly contributes to a reduction in deaths

One effort cited by Steen that may have contributed to the drop in child deaths are the new “heart zones” drawn around Oslo’s schools, where officials are making physical changes to streets to protect students walking and biking to school, including closing streets to cars during school hours.

So there's nothing magical about it. Having fewer drivers, going slower while creating more space for cyclists and pedestrians is what it takes. I don't think anyone is surprised by that. Which leads one to ask? If we already know how to get to zero deaths, why haven't we done it?

But there is hope for DC still.

Progress was also uneven for Oslo in the early years after setting its own Vision Zero goal. But it’s Oslo’s car-free zones that have made the difference, Steen told Aftenposten, because overall roadway deaths haven’t reduced across Norway in recent years the way Oslo’s have plummeted.

BTW, Helsinki also had zero pedestrian and cyclist deaths last year. 

The improvement in traffic safety is the sum of several factors. Traffic safety has improved due to betterments to the street environment, increasing traffic control, the development of vehicle safety measures and technology, and the development of rescue services. Reducing speed limits has also been a key factor

Helsinki decided to lower speed limits in 2018, and the new limits took force last year. Currently, the speed limit on streets in residential areas and the city centre is primarily 30 km/h. The speed limit on main streets is 50 km/h in suburban areas and 40 km/h in the inner city.

The City will start installing 70 new traffic control cameras and making alterations aimed at improving the safety of pedestrian crossings in the most dangerous locations this year. 

Bicycle Travel Trends for the Washington Region

In a 2018 report by the Transportation Planning Board, they note that biking has grown considerably as a commute choice, even while it remains a small part of the commute pie. 

In 2000, commuting by bicycle accounted for 0.3% of the total mode share. By 2016, this increased to 0.9%, a 200% increase in mode share and representing the fastest-growing commute mode since 2000. The second-fastest growth in mode share was in transit at 47%. While the use of bike as a primary mode for commuting has increased dramatically since 2000, bike commuting continues to account for less than 1% of total commuting. Nevertheless, bicycling and walking in the Washington region have become increasingly popular predominant travel options for many commuters, especially in the inner jurisdictions. This growth is further supported by an increasing number of non-motorized projects appearing in TPB's long range plan.

In 2005, regional bicycle facilities could be found in many TPB jurisdictions, especially the inner core. In the last decade, several communities have advocated for more bicycle and pedestrian accommodation, complete streets and safe routes to school. As a result, the bike/ped network looks a lot different in 2018. *

TPB's Bicycle and Pedestrian Plan for the National Capital Region catalogs currently funded and unfunded bicycle and pedestrian projects in the region. The current plan database (under development) includes several additional facilities that will further connect communities, Activity Centers and provide alternatives to driving. 

Despite a 14.5% increase in population and a 5.6% increase in employment between 2007 and 2018, and decreases in Metrorail use, weekday VMT has remained comparatively flat with only a 0.4% increase. 

This trend is further illustrated by the fact that VMT per capita increased 8.5% between 2000 and 2007, but decreased by 12.5% from 2007 through 2015.

Several factors contribute to this, including 

  • The rapid growth in non-motorized facilities, including shared bicycle providers and dedicated routes, has prompted considerable growth in bicycle/pedestrian travel.

Budget Issues could create indefinite delay in Capital Crescent Trail Tunnel

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich released his proposed capital budget last week and much to the chagrin of trail advocates, it includes no money for the county's portion of the Capital Crescent Trail (CCT). Montgomery County Council member Andrew Friedson (D-District 1) decried the lack of funding for a tunnel on the CCT. Hans Riemer opposed it too.

Transportation officials have released draft designs for the project, which would run underneath Wisconsin Avenue and link the trail with downtown Bethesda.

Riemer called the tunnel a “huge project” related to the success of the Purple Line. Advocates say it would provide a direct route to the Bethesda station for pedestrians and cyclists, who would otherwise be forced to cross a busy arterial road.

As I understand it, this does not mean there will no tunnel, nor does it mean there will no spending on the tunnel. It's a proposed budget and even if Council agrees to it, they aren't saying they will never build it, but any delay means the tunnel won't be available when the new tunnel opens. Nonetheless, this is an unwelcome turn of events. 

Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich (D) has included no money in his capital budget proposal for the county’s long-promised plan to build a tunnel to carry cyclists and runners on the Capital Crescent Trail beneath busy Wisconsin Avenue in downtown Bethesda.

County officials say the project’s construction costs have ballooned, making it too expensive to include in a tight budget.

When the CCT first opened, the trail ended where it does now in Bethesda because the Air Rights Tunnel was off limits. It took a couple of years and some active advocacy to open in 1998. It had always been the plan to run both the Purple Line and the new CCT through the existing tunnel, but in 2011 the county performed an engineering review that showed that it would be too costly and they made plans to drop the trail tunnel. Because the tunnel would have to be drastically modified to make room for both the tunnel and the trail, adding the trail through the tunnel would cost about $50 million. 

It was determined that knocking down the Apex building above the tunnel and building a new building and tunnel would be a better solution and so, after lengthy negotiations, that's what they did.  The new Apex Building will include a tunnel and station for the Purple Line and another tunnel and bike room for the trail. 

image from washcycle.typepad.com

In order to avoid the problems with the tunnel beneath the Air Rights Building, the trail tunnel was to be redirected, as can be seen above, underneath Wisconsin Avenue and the buildings that stand along Elm Street to the east of Wisconsin. That's the part the county is supposed to build and is that Elrich is not budgeting money for. 

A little over 2 years ago, the estimated cost of the County-portion of the tunnel was $15 million to $30 million and that was still the number they were pointing to a few months later when they came out with three preliminary design options.

image from washcycle.typepad.com

But they now report that the cost has continued to rise.

County spokesman Neil Greenberger said funding for the tunnel was not included in the capital improvement plan Elrich announced this week.

“The scope of the project changed as it was further studied,” said Greenberger. “It needed to be a longer tunnel than originally believed, and that boosted the cost significantly.”

Greenberger said funding for the project “could be added in the future, and we will continue to study alternative ways to build it at a more reasonable cost.”

Without funding, progress on the tunnel would be delayed, disappointing bicycle advocates who say the feature has been promised for years.

Now, ironically, they're back at the $50 million price tag that started this whole Apex building drama.

But county officials say early design work put the projected construction cost at more than $50 million — far more than the $25 million initially anticipated — in part because the tunnel would have to be longer than expected because of the constraints of surrounding streets.

“We were not prepared for all these costs when the project was discussed,” said county spokesman Neil Greenberger. “There’s no money in this [capital budget], but we’re aware of it and aware of its importance to the community. We can do it later.”

Montgomery County Council member Hans Riemer (D-At Large) said he will try to put the money in the budget but would need to find other projects to cut.

Requiring trail users to cross Wisconsin at a light, Riemer said, “is sort of like putting a stoplight on the Beltway. We just don’t want to create that kind of disruption if we can avoid it.”

I don't know how to look at that as anything other than a complete screw-up. They misjudged the length of the tunnel by 100%, and they went down a path that involved delaying the project and knocking down a building to wind up right where they were before - needing $50 million to keep the trail beneath Wisconsin Avenue (admittedly, the Apex Building rebuild had other advantages). How did they make such egregious miscalculations?

But I'm also a bit skeptical. Did they really misjudge the length of the tunnel they'd need? In this drawing from 2013 it looks pretty much the same (although it is cut off). 

Oddly enough, if they'd just gone with the "no-trail" option from the beginning, at least there would be pedestrian path for the CCT.

image from ggwash.org

If you want to learn more, MCDOT is having a meeting on the trail tonight at 7pm at the Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School all purpose room/cafeteria. Maybe they'll explain how this happened. 

The Montgomery County Department of Transportation will present the Capital Crescent Trail Tunnel project and obtain feedback. For those who cannot attend but want to watch the meeting, there will be a live webcast at this address: https://montgomerycounty.adobeconnect.com/capitalcrescenttrail

Silver Spring's Protected intersection opened in the fall

image from d1dph1psyatsfa.cloudfront.net

So blogging has been light which means I'm totally behind, but last October, Montgomery County completed the first protected intersection on the East Coast. It's located at the intersection of Second and Wayne in Silver Spring. (Video coverage here)

The intersection was one of the final steps of a roughly 1.5-mile bike loop started in late 2016. The pathway of protected lanes along Wayne and Second avenues connects with a previously constructed section along Spring and Cedar Streets and links directly with the Silver Spring Transit Center on Colesville Road.

Planning for the intersection dates back at least as far as 2016, but work didn't start until last June. The design...

image from wtop.com

is a little different from what NACTO shows in their booklet on them because it redirects cyclists as they go through the intersection. The ones in the NACTO guide allow cyclists to go straight through. But I'm not sure why MoCo chose to do it this way. 

Screenshot 2020-01-17 at 12.07.44 AM

MoCo plans another one in Silver Spring and one in Bethesda too. 

There’s also dedicated funding for another stretch of protected bike lanes on Fenton Street, said Council Member Hans Riemer — the next phase of the bike network in Silver Spring.

Over the next several years, Bethesda and Wheaton are scheduled to receive their own pathways

But construction on the Fenton facility won't be completed until 2024, so it's odd that he chose to highlight that one. Is there nothing more immediate in the plans?

 

Virginia to build new bike/ped bridge with Long Bridge expansion

On the heels of the completion of the Long Bridge draft EIS, Virginia has announced plans to fund a new rail bridge - just as the EIS recommended - across the Potomac just upstream of the current bridge, and to acquire 225 miles of track and 350 miles of railroad right of way from CSX for $525 million, including half of the right of way between Washington and Richmond, so that they can expand passenger traffic from DC to North Carolina and across the commonwealth. They also intend to build a new bicycle-pedestrian bridge between the new railroad bridge and the Yellow Line's Fenwick Bridge. Meanwhile, Maryland is going to expand the Beltway.

Virginia will assume about one-third of the cost, using existing rail funding and additional discretionary funds available through the Commonwealth Transportation Board. Federal funds will cover about another third of the price tag, including the $45 million rail share from the Atlantic Gateway grant. Amtrak intends to invest $944 million, state officials said.

Virginia anticipates it will raise the final share from regional partners, including the District and Maryland, as well as VRE and other Northern Virginia transportation boards. The District and Maryland have pledged support for a bridge expansion, though it is unclear how much each would be willing to contribute.

The bridge will create a great new connection between VA and DC and carry that connection over the GW Parkway in the critical 14th Street corridor. 

image from washcycle.typepad.com

Virginia officials said the state plans to build that pedestrian and bike bridge.

“We are working with our regional partners to determine how it will be funded and implemented,” Virginia Deputy Transportation Secretary Nick Donohue said.

Virginia and North Carolina will be buying 75 miles of abandoned rail right-of-way between Petersburg and Ridgeway, NC that would make a great rail trail, but a better high-speed rail line. Maybe there's even some room in the corridor for some rail with trail. One can dream. 

A transportation project of this magnitude is one cyclists should keep their eye on. It's not just the bridge or the way it goes over a major trail. Virginia is going to be doing construction all along the corridor, and each bit of work brings with it opportunities. 

Not to get ahead of ourselves, but we're going to need a name for the bike/ped bridge just so we all know what we're talking about.

The railroad bridge isn't even REALLY called the Long Bridge. The first bridge there was the Washington Bridge, but then people started calling it the Long Bridge Across the Potomac to distinguish it from Chain Bridge, and later just Long Bridge. When they built the current bridge it replaced one built in 1872 that carried both rail traffic and carriages. They replaced it with two bridges that were called Highway Bridge and Railroad Bridge. It wasn't until the late 1980's, during planning of the VRE, that the old "Long Bridge" name was reattached to the railroad bridge. 

Anyway I'm open to suggestions. Since it will be Virginia's Bridge, they'll probably get to name it so I'm prepared for it to be the Ralph Sampson Bridge or something.  

N. Quincy at the Custis Trail Before and After

N. Quincy at 15th and the Custis Trail before the 2017 rework of the crosswalk and bike lanes.

Before

And After

After

(Meant to report on it at the time. Better late than never?)

Planning Board revises Veirs Mill Road plan to include Matthew Henson Trail overpass

Back in March, Montgomery County planners sought approval of their new Veirs Mil Corridor Master Plan. The plan would include, among other things, a new crossing for the Matthew Henson Trail and a parallel bikeway (see below), both of which are called for the county's new bicycle master plan.  

Crosssection

Since then there have been hearings in March and a planning board resolution passed in April. 

The Planning Board approved the plan with some revisions, most notably they replaced a recommendation to build an at-grade crossing for the Matthew Henson Trail (where two cyclists have been killed in the last few years) with an overpass. They also add a statement prioritizing road safety over congestion mitigation, lower the speed limit on a section between Havard and Bushey to 25 mph (from 35), and add the following:

As a goal, the number of additional lanes at signalized intersections should be minimized so that crossing distances and exposure of pedestrians and bicyclists to traffic when crossing the road are also minimized. Wherever it is determined to be beneficial to safety and does not create unacceptable congestion levels as defined by the applicable Subdivision Staging Policy congestion standard, the number of left turn lanes at a signalized intersection should be limited to one. Where dual left turn lanes are provided, consider the implementation of strategies to mitigate the speed of left-turning vehicles and to mitigate the additional width of the road that pedestrians and bicyclists must cross.

Revisions also move the interim bike network from Veirs Mill to the parallel service roads, as recommended by Council Staff. They also accept the Staff recommendation to change the Randolph Road interchange from a diamond interchange to a grade separated one that's better for cyclists and pedestrians. 

They replaced a recommendation for "Removal of channelized right turns at intersection of Veirs Mill Road and Connecticut Avenue" with

Wherever it is determined to be beneficial to safety, remove the channelized right tum lanes, particularly at the intersection of Veirs Mill Road and Connecticut Avenue, if feasible. If channelized right-tum lanes prove to be necessary, design the lanes to limit the exposure of vulnerable road users, including implementing measures to reduce the speed of turning vehicles so that vehicles yield, as required, to improve safety for pedestrians and bicyclists crossing the tum lane. 

One other thing in the plan that was not mentioned before is this. 

Consistent with the previous master plans, the Veirs Mill Corridor Master Plan continues to support the abandonment of the Aspen Hill Road extension to further facilitate the synergistic redevelopment of Halpine View, Parkway Woods and Halpine Hamlet. Further, this master plan continues to recommend a trail through the properties to connect to the new Twinbrook Trail and ultimately the Rock Creek Trail.

Arlington County Vision Zero Working Group has first meeting

Last month the newly formed Arlington County Vision Zero External Stakeholder Working Group had their first meeting. 

In July 2019, the Arlington County Board resolved to adopt a Vision Zero strategy as a comprehensive and holistic approach to eliminating traffic fatalities and serious injuries in the County. As directed by the County Board, the County is embarking on the development of the Vision Zero Goals and Action Plan this fall. Working with an Internal Stakeholder Working Group, an Internal Stakeholder Working Group and public engagement checkpoints along the way, we plan to finalize an Action Plan for review by the County Board in fall of 2020.

Working group members were invited in October 2019 from existing committees, commissions and community organizations identified by the internal Working Group. The mission of the group will be to support the County’s Vision Zero program 

Arlington has far fewer fatalities, a little over 3 a year on average, than DC, so in some ways it's an easier goal for them. But then in other ways it'll be harder since, for example, they don't have complete control over their roads. They're fatality rate is also much lower than other places in the region. (I can't explain the difference between the chart and the table for 2017).

FatalArlington

There are future meetings and lots of plans and opportunities for public engagement, so if you care about VZ in Arlington find time to get involved. More can be found at Streetjustice (subscription needed). 

More e-bike sharing could be coming in the future

DC recently announced that more crental e-bikes could be coming to DC, which has been the trend over the last year. 

Last year (I know) Arlington was having it's dockless vehicle pilot program and announced that more companies could enter the market. 

County commuter services bureau chief Jim Larsen told the Transportation Commission last Thursday (Nov. 1) that two more scooter companies could soon enter Arlington as well: Skip and Lyft, which only recently began offering scooters in addition to its ridesharing service.

Then, by January, Larsen expects that Jump could also make the move from D.C. into Arlington and offer both electric bikes and scooters in the county.

Jump Scooters came to Arlington over the summer, but no bikes yet. Safety concerns about scooters remain, and the scope is becoming clearer, but hardly clear.

Others on the commission were less willing than Clement to attack the program’s legitimacy. Commissioner Jim Lantelme was interested in comparing the number of scooter-involved crashes to those involving bikes, noting that they “might actually be safer than bicycles or other methods” of getting around. Larsen, however, didn’t have such data available.

Meanwhile, in DC

The four companies — Jump (owned by Uber), Lyft, Skip and Spin — will be allowed to deploy up to 10,000 scooters starting Jan. 1, nearly doubling the number of devices available for rent in the city. In addition, the city is issuing two permits for e-bike operations to allow a total of 5,000 e-bikes beginning Jan. 1.

The city had announced plans in October to reduce the number of scooter operators and put four slots for scooter operations and four for e-bikes up for bid. Thirteen scooter companies and five e-bike companies applied, according to DDOT. An interagency committee evaluated the applications on a 198-point scale and selected the top point-earners.

Helbiz, an Italian company that launched its first e-bike operation in Rome last month, and Jump, which already operates e-bikes in the District, secured bike permits. Each will be allowed to deploy up to 2,500 of the devices.

Currently, the eight companies permitted to operate deploy just over 5,200 scooters combined. Additionally, Jump has nearly 1,000 e-bikes in service.

I'm not a big fan of the limits, but I think things are moving in a good direction. 

Milloy argues that because DC doesn't have good bike infrastructure, we shouldn't build bike infrastructure.

Screenshot 2019-11-19 at 11.29.25 PM

Courtland Milloy has chosen to write another anti-safe streets column, and as is usual it's full of mularkey.

To better understand what the fight over bike lanes in the District is about, it apparently helps to visit Copenhagen.

I've never been, but I think I have a good grasp on it and it has nothing to do with Copenhagen. Here's what you need to know to understand the fight. It isn't even about bike lanes. It's about public space and who gets to use it and how. On one side are those who believe we should set aside more space for biking (among other things) and a side that doesn't. The side that does has - at least publicly - the buy in of the DC government as well as the regional authorities, and the side that doesn't has the power of the status quo. This is a fight similar to like a million others and you don't have to go to Europe to understand it. One side wants change for reasons we agree are good and the other side doesn't want change for reasons they're embarrassed to admit. 

Paul Dougherty, a resident of the Spring Valley neighborhood, called Copenhagen “a bicyclist utopia”

Not necessarily true, but the downside is...?

...that was unrealistic for the District.

This is bad faith argument. The goal is not to become Copenhagen anytime soon. If everything in the MoveDC plan were put in place and the entire Capital Trail Coalition plan were built, we wouldn't be Copenhagen. There is literally no plan to move that far on any timeline. 

Dougherty is leading a group of residents opposed to converting two lanes of the Dalecarlia Parkway into bike lanes.

You can read Dougherty's petition at change.org (more like nochange.com amiright?). He's got 600+ signatures as of this writing. His opposition stems from:

  1. As he sees it, people don't want them. Or at least people who live near him don't.  
  2. Bike lanes will slow down ambulances. "The hospital now enjoys a clear, direct, approach for these vehicles which under the Study will require vehicles to at least cross the bike and pedestrian lanes."
  3. Dalecarlia Parkway is a Parkway with a 40 MPH speed limit. Bikes that travel at 20 MPH should not be sharing the road with cars doing 40 MPH
  4. major traffic congestion along Dalecarlia will not help the back-up during the morning or evening rush hours. 

Let's look at these one at a time. There's no proof that (1) is correct and even if it is, not wanting something is not a good enough reason. That's the logic of a 6 year old. On (2), here's what DDOT says

DDOT has shared the draft recommendations from the Livability Study with Sibley Hospital, and they have no concerns at this time. They have requested that DDOT notify DC FEMS and private ambulance providers. DDOT will continue to update Sibley Hospital as the project progresses.

For (3), that's literally what the bike lanes are for?

On (4), ding ding ding, we have a winner! Like I said, this is about public resources (space) and who gets to benefit from it. Paul would like people who want to drive 40 mph without traffic congestion to benefit. DDOT wants people who will bike to benefit. Which makes sense because as a city, we've already set goals to have more people bike and fewer people drive. 

Back to Milloy

People at the meeting were saying to Cheh, a bicycle enthusiast (the opponents claim they're bike enthusiasts too, so everyone's a bike enthusiast) who chairs the transportation committee, “ ‘We’ve been to Copenhagen, and D.C. is nothing like Copenhagen,’ ” Dougherty recalled.

Yeah. "Copenhagen is spectacular and this town is a real shithole. Do you thing the morons in this room could build a city half that nice? No way! We shouldn't even try. Didn't we all move here BECAUSE this place is a dangerous shithole?" 

But seriously, this is how it always goes. Person A: "I saw something nice in xxx" Person B: "well this isn't xxx and we're incapable of learning from anyone else's experience" Person A: "Oh, we are" Person: "Game. Set. Touchdown." (<- This is intentional). 

Milloy then points out the Denmark and Copenhagen started out from a better place than we have probably at any time in the last 120 years - and that's true. I push against other bike advocates for the same reason. We can't just magically become Copenhagen overnight. We are starting from another spot and have to make our own path. But... that doesn't mean we aren't aspiring to the same thing, or at least something similar. That doesn't mean we should act as though Copenhagen doesn't exist or that their grits cook faster than ours or something. 

While more D.C. residents are moving away from cars toward public transportation, scooters and, yes, bikes, the truth is that we are still far from having an infrastructure to support all those things on the roads and pedestrians.

If only there were some way to fix that. Like maybe the infrastructure will come here on its own if we all sit real quietly.

The problem is, the Dalecarlia Parkway serves as a commuter gateway in and out of Maryland and Virginia, with links to Chain Bridge Road and the Clara Barton Parkway.

I agree, that is a problem, but if we shut it down entirely people will get REALLY angry.

Oh...you meant that it's a major regional commuter route and a road diet here would inconvenience some drivers. Oh...OK. Then my answer is "I don't care." We need to change the transportation system. We need to make it safer, more equitable and cleaner. We need to make a system that lets everyone who wants to bike and walk, safe to do so. And to do that we have to take space from drivers and we need to make driving less convenient. On the upside, it will also make driving safer and reduce pollution in your neighborhood. So it's really a win-win.

“Dalecarlia was designed to keep traffic from our neighborhood streets,” said Alma Gates, a longtime resident of the District’s Palisades neighborhood. “When you shut down two lanes of the parkway, traffic is going to start coming through the neighborhoods and that will pose a huge safety concern for us.”

Actually....Dalecarlia Parkway was partially built on a bicycle route that was built by cyclists (using their own money and labor) in the late 1890's. And then road was built to provide access between Western Avenue and Conduit Road. Not that it matters. What matters is that there is no credible scenario where this road diet causes traffic to redirect through either Spring Valley or the Palisades. That's just hogwash. 

But also....If you don't want cars in your neighborhood...if they're a problem...we can do something about that. 

Residents complain that the city was taking action without their knowledge or rushing to implement policies before citizens could organize in opposition.

This was part of the Rock Creek Far West study that began in early 2019. A bike facility was in the MoveDC in 2014 and in the 2005 bike plan. It might have been in the bike plan from the 1976 for all I know. It's all on the web. There is no rushing or hiding. You're writing this about a PUBLIC MEETING where the councilmember showed up!!!

Copenhagen is working in cooperation with 17 other municipalities in the capital region of Denmark to build a network of “cycle superhighways.” The plan is to make fast and comfortable routes from the suburbs to the city center. Cooperation for a project like that does not exist in the Washington region.

You'd be excused for not knowing about this, but such a project does exist. It was reported about in a little local paper called the Washington Post

Forty years. Patient, deliberative, one step at a time.

Courtland Milloy must be the only person who thinks DC is moving too fast at building out it's bike network. In 1974 they set the goal of 30 miles of bike lane, which they didn't achieve until ~2010. "One step at a time" is our jam. And by time we mean months and months. Same writer, two paragraphs later:

By 2025, Copenhagen expects to have 75 percent of the trips in the city made by foot, bicycle or public transit. In the District, the goal is to have 10 more miles of bike lanes by 2024. But the plan is behind schedule 

Maybe we need more patience. 

The problem in D.C. is that we aren’t seeing the big picture,” said Thomas Smith, a resident of the Spring Valley neighborhood. “Decisions are being made one street at a time without regard for how it’s going to affect the next street. Nobody is looking at the whole city.”

Oh FFS Thomas. Really? Really? Again: Bike plan in 2005. Comprehensive Transportation Plan in 2014. The city has a comprehensive plan, which it updates often. We have regional plans. We've got plans Thomas. We've got plans. [Thomas Smith use to be on ANC 3d and lost his election.  He opposed the New Mexico Ave bike lanes making claims about the damage they would do that never came true.]

opposition to more lanes continues to mount.

“Copenhagen is a thousand-year-old flat peninsula with lots of roads everywhere,” Dougherty said. “In D.C., everything is up. There is no comparison.”

There is opposition and repeating these bad faith arguments as if they're anything other than what they are doesn't help. 

Banner design by creativecouchdesigns.com

City Paper's Best Local Bike Blog 2009

Categories

 Subscribe in a reader