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Brookline Asking For Feedback About Idaho Stops

Written by Boston Biker on Sep 17

In case you didn’t know, the Idaho Stop is when cyclists are allowed to treat stop signs like yields, and red lights like stop signs.  Idaho was the first to try it out, and more or less its been pretty ok.

Saw this tweet from the Brookline PD today…asking for feedback about said Idaho Stops.

I saw if you are going to do it, it has to be all the time all roads, otherwise its just too confusing. As far as I know it would require a change in the law, and would for sure need to be accompanied by a huge education campaign.

 

What do you think?


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Posted in advocacy, infrastructure | 6 Comments »

More Coverage Of Side Guards

Written by Boston Biker on Sep 10

From Boston Magazine:

———-

In late July, a Hubway cyclist traveling down Massachusetts Avenue in the South End was hit by a city-contracted trash truck as it went to make a right hand turn onto Columbus Avenue. The cyclist survived the accident, and it may have been due to just one detail: special safety guards that were installed on the sides of the vehicle as part of a pilot program launched by the city last year.

In 2013, through a collaboration between the Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics and the Public Works Department, officials said they undertook the largest municipal pilot program of truck side guards in the nation, testing three different types of guards on 16 active vehicles driving the streets, including trash collection trucks.

Officials also worked with researchers from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Volpe Center in Kendall Square to sketch out the details for the proposed guard project, as well as City Councillor Ayanna Pressley, and members of the Boston Cyclists Union.

Read more here.


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Interesting Theoretical Intersection Re-Design

Written by Boston Biker on Sep 04

Protected Intersections For Bicyclists from Nick Falbo on Vimeo.

An interesting proposal, I am not totally sold, but I like where this is going. The left turns across pedestrian traffic worry me slightly, but honestly it probably wouldn’t be that bad, as the cyclists would have to slow to turn anyway.


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Posted in fun, infrastructure, video | 1 Comment »

New Buffered Bike Lanes In Cambridge!

Written by Boston Biker on Jul 15

Check out these awesome lanes!  Parked cars on the outside, nice buffer zone, that fresh zing of new thermo plastic.  More of these please.

 

20140707_084131


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Hubway Officially Hits 2 Million Rides!

Written by Boston Biker on Jul 10

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Congrats to Paul Wagner checked out a Hubway bike this past Sunday June 29th, at 11:53am he added his name to the annals of Hubway history by being the two millionth rider!   Pretty awesome, and a sign that Hubway is growing rapidly.  I heard that he didn’t believe it when they emailed him, so they had to call him and force him to accept his prize ha ha.


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Posted in Bike Business, Commuting, infrastructure | No Comments »

The Invisible Danger

Written by Boston Biker on Jul 07

Cars are pretty bad. Its probably not very hard to come up with a dozen bad things our use of cars has done for the planet, for cities, and for people. You might be thinking you can escape thous bad effects by riding a bicycle instead. And for the most part this is true.

But there is one danger posed by cars that still holds true when you ride your bicycle. Pollution, specifically cancer and asthma causing pollution.

A fascinating study from the Harvard school of public health shows that car drivers are not just hurting themselves, but are also hurting everyone who chooses not to drive cars.  For most things in this country your right to do whatever you want, extends right up until they hurt someone else,  however it seems that when it comes to environmental damage we still have the idea that the sky is a public dumping ground and anyone can inflict damage on anyone else.

Luckily it seems that bike paths and use of proper planning can greatly reduce the exposure to these pollutants.  Combined with the added health benefits of cycling, and the reduction of single car occupants on the road, cycling is still one of the single greatest ways to make yourself healthier, and make everyone else healthier at the same time.

From the Harvard School of Public Health:

Boston has installed more than 50 miles of bike lanes since 2007, and the number of pedal-powered commuters in the city, while only 2.1%, is more than three times the national average. To help urban planners continue to improve bike friendliness, researchers at Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH) set out to determine the types of lanes that expose cyclists to the smallest amount of vehicle pollution.

The researchers attached a mobile monitoring unit to the back of a bicycle and hit the road to sample two types of pollutants from vehicular exhaust—black carbon and nitrogen dioxide—known to increase the risk of asthma, heart disorders, and other health problems. They traveled five common bicycling routes in the city during both morning and evening commutes, to compare bike paths, which are separated from the road, and bike lanes, which run adjacent to traffic.

Bike paths had the best air quality, with concentrations of both pollutants about a third lower than on bike lanes. This was true even when bike paths near crowded streets were compared with bike lanes on quieter streets, suggesting that separation from the road and a protective barrier of vegetation, such as trees and bushes, makes a difference. Bike paths also allow cyclists to bypass intersections, where idling cars make the air quality particularly bad.

Piers MacNaughton, SM ’14, led the data analysis, which was published online May 16, 2014 in Science of the Total Environment. He earned his degree in the Exposure, Epidemiology and Risk Program in the Department of Environmental Health and will start a PhD in the program this fall.

A bike commuter himself, MacNaughton said the aim of the study is not to scare off city bicyclists but rather to provide evidence to shape future urban planning—particularly now that Boston is on the short list of host cities for the 2024 Olympics. “They are really pushing to be a biking capital. I wanted to get this research out so that when they start developing more bike lanes, they can do so in a smart way,” MacNaughton said.

Read abstract: Impact of bicycle route type on exposure to traffic-related air pollution

Read Boston Globe coverage: Cyclists, don your gas masks


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Posted in advocacy, Commuting, infrastructure | No Comments »

New Bike Lanes Popping Up All Over The Place

Written by Boston Biker on Jun 30

Not only have the cities of Cambridge, Somerville, and Boston been out in force re-painting old bike lanes, but I have seen some new ones go in as well. School street in Somerville  got a new one, Mass Ave in Central saw a slight modification to some old one (see below), and there have been other small and large changes around town.

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These are the new Central Square treatments. I like how they have tried to make sure the parked cars get right up against the curb, leaving just that much more space for non-door zone bike lane.

Have you noticed any new bike infrastructure? Tiss’ the season to be laying down thermo-plastic it seems.


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Hubway Hits 2 Million Trips!

Written by Boston Biker on Jun 26

It’s been less than a year, and they have racked up another million rides!  Its nice to see the growth is not only continuing but getting faster.

 

Hello Hubway riders!

In Hubway’s first season of operations in 2011, you took more than 142,000 rides. In 2012, more than 533,000 rides. And last year, over 910,000 rides! If it seems like less than a year since we were celebrating Hubway’s 1,000,000th ride, that’s because it was! You’ve already taken over 375,000 more since this season’s full system reopening in April, and we’re anticipating Hubway’s 2,000,000th trip to be taken sometime this weekend.

Will you be Hubway’s 2 millionth rider? If you are, you’ll receive a $130 gift certificate from New Balance! That’s enough for a brand new top-of-the-line pair of shoes to keep you riding in style!

Plus, with a newly deployed station, a bunch of events on the horizon, and more system expansion on the way, you’ve got plenty of places and reasons to ride! Congratulations in advance of 2 million rides! 3 million is right around the corner.


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Posted in Commuting, infrastructure | 1 Comment »

The Word On The Street

  • RSS Here is what people are saying

    • Commonwealth Ave, Phase 2A: “to, through, or around” September 20, 2014
      TweetA lot of bright people have been discussing the upcoming rebuild of Commonwealth Avenue lately, because the city plans to forge ahead blindly with a bad design.  The fundamental issues are these: The city is refusing to even attempt to … Continue reading →
      mattyciii
    • The CX-Files September 19, 2014
      Tweet Scenic Hartford, Connecticut was the center of New England cyclocross last weekend. Silk City (also the CT state championships) had a good deal of firepower in the elite race, with Austin Vincent headlining a robust field of very fit-looking … Continue reading →
      geekhousebikes
    • Vehicle Operators Salmoning By Car September 18, 2014
      TweetThe term “salmoning” has become quite popular for describing the act of bicycling the wrong way down a one-way street. Salmon are known for swimming against the tide. They do this because fresh water is required for them to lay … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • Brookline Asking For Feedback About Idaho Stops September 17, 2014
      TweetIn case you didn’t know, the Idaho Stop is when cyclists are allowed to treat stop signs like yields, and red lights like stop signs.  Idaho was the first to try it out, and more or less its been pretty … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • Active Versus Inactive Transportation September 15, 2014
      TweetUntil I started a bicycling blog, I had never really heard of the term “active transportation.” The first time I heard this term, I thought it was rather odd. I didn’t know whether it referred to the fact that one … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • More Bikes Than Cars September 12, 2014
      TweetTwice in the last two weeks I have been a part of a lovely thing.  While riding to work I look around and see way…way more bikes than cars.   I think it is a product of the lovely riding weather … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • FREE! Bike Hangers With Security Cable’s FREE! September 12, 2014
      TweetHowdy folks, I have roughly 10 Mini Mum Vertical Bike Hangers with Security Cable.     Free to whoever wants one or all of them.  They don’t have mounting screws, but you can get those at any hardware store.   … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • The Role Of Bicycle Tourism In A Community’s Acceptance Of Bicycling September 11, 2014
      TweetBicycle tourism, although growing in leaps and bounds, is not something we think about when advocating for bicycling or bicycle infrastructure. Bicycling is generally seen as a recreational activity or a mode of transportation. Consequently, arguments for its acceptance are … Continue reading →
      IsolateCyclist
    • More Coverage Of Side Guards September 11, 2014
      TweetFrom Boston Magazine: ———- In late July, a Hubway cyclist traveling down Massachusetts Avenue in the South End was hit by a city-contracted trash truck as it went to make a right hand turn onto Columbus Avenue. The cyclist survived the accident, … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker
    • David Watson Steps Down As Executive Director Of MassBike September 11, 2014
      TweetWhile I am very sad to see David go, he did an excellent job at MassBike for many years, its great that he is moving on to other challenges. From MassBike: Today our Executive Director, David Watson, announced that he … Continue reading →
      Boston Biker