The Chainlink

Hopefully you've heard by now that CDOT will begin construction this week on the city's first protected bike lane: Kinzie Street from Milwaukee Avenue/Desplaines Street to Wells Street. 

 

Full story on Steven Can Plan. 

 

I want to know what you think about this.

  • What do you feel will need special attention?
  • Is this the right or wrong location for such a facility? Why?
  • Are you going to thank/congratulate Rahm, Gabe, and the CDOT Bicycle Program?
  • Will you use it?

 

Cycle track and protected bike lane naysayers, this isn't the post for you. But if you've ridden in protected bike lanes before, then I welcome your constructive comments and criticism based on your actual experiences. 

Big intersection

The new beginning. Looking southeast at the intersection of Kinzie/Milwaukee/Desplaines. 

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Ah. In fact I can.
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That must have been the most awesome MBAC meeting I've ever attended. And I've been to 14 I think. 

Why?

This was the only one where I actually felt that CDOT was doing something new, different, and interesting. 

  • New Streets for Cycling Plan, this time including information on what kind of bikeway (including bike boulevards, protected bike lanes) would be appropriate for that segment. Sam Schwartz Engineering will be making the plan, with at least 3-6 public meetings. 
  • On-street bike parking (which we already knew about)
  • Kinzie update
  • Stony Island update

I'll have more details later, including the questions people were asking.

 

Anne, can you post your Vincennes document and photos? I felt slightly shocked that Vincennes connected to so many bikeways and recommended routes. 

Talking about pedestrians in the bike lane. The Kinzie street bike lane isn't even officially open, and the first pedestrian in the bike lane has been documented.

 

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chicagobikes/5811563925/in/set-7215762...

 

In the background you can see a woman stumbling through the bike lane. I've nicknamed her "Anorexic Annie". I see her most mornings jogging westbound on Kinzie. Jogging is a big word for what she does. Most people walk faster. She often darts out in the car lane stumbling like a drunk. It will be interesting to see how long it takes before she gets hit in the bike lane, where there is a lot less space to navigate around her.

I felt the same way about yesterday's meeting, for the same reasons.

 

See the following discussion thread for the Vincennes info I presented at the meeting.  I added some info between when I started the topic and when I presented it - see comments. 

 

Until I started riding Vincennes, I didn't appreciate how many bike routes and locations it connects, and what a wonderfully fast route it can offer through the south side - when it's fully rideable.  In years when it's been in reasonable condition, it's given me some amazingly fast rides to/from Hyde Park, South Shore, Avalon Park, etc.

 

Steven Vance said:

That must have been the most awesome MBAC meeting I've ever attended. And I've been to 14 I think. 

Why?

This was the only one where I actually felt that CDOT was doing something new, different, and interesting. 

  • New Streets for Cycling Plan, this time including information on what kind of bikeway (including bike boulevards, protected bike lanes) would be appropriate for that segment. Sam Schwartz Engineering will be making the plan, with at least 3-6 public meetings. 
  • On-street bike parking (which we already knew about)
  • Kinzie update
  • Stony Island update

I'll have more details later, including the questions people were asking.

 

Anne, can you post your Vincennes document and photos? I felt slightly shocked that Vincennes connected to so many bikeways and recommended routes. 

Duppie said:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chicagobikes/5811563925/in/set-7215762...

 In the background you can see a woman stumbling through the bike lane. .

I think that's the same person I've seen jogging (barely) in the winter.  I've almost hit her while I was riding my bike.  She or someone else dresses in shabby dark clothing and jogs slowly in the dark early morning hours.

 

Also, I just returned from a visit to the new bike lane...it's not working correctly.  Hey, maybe they should place a dummy car in the parking section; perhaps made of concrete.

It's not working properly because it's not done.

  • There are no bike symbols on the pavement.
  • There're no bollards
  • There's no signage

No one knows it's a bike lane except us. 

It will be completed before Bike To Work Day on June 17th. 


Mark Kenseth said:

 

Also, I just returned from a visit to the new bike lane...it's not working correctly.  Hey, maybe they should place a dummy car in the parking section; perhaps made of concrete.

I just received this updated schematic from a source inside CDOT (click to view full size):

 

Yep cars are driving over the white lines like hmmm this is weird wonder what this means?

Thanks for the diagram, Howard. Confirms my current perception that Kinzie looks like a giant pinball machine right now. Until everyone gets used to where they're supposed to be and what they're supposed to do, risk is going to be significantly higher for awhile. (At least until they start posting a patrol officer every 7-10 feet in peak traffic periods).

 

 

Are they going to remove the parking meter thats sitting next to the BMW in that picture and/or the others down the street?

Drivers will still be expected to pay for their parking.  Remember that this is a "study."

chixieonfixie said:

Are they going to remove the parking meter thats sitting next to the BMW in that picture and/or the others down the street?
One of the interesting things mentioned yesterday was that moving the parking isn't losing the parking and that the parking contract doesn't require them to leave the spaces by the curb thus, it's no limit on new cycling infrastructure. I think everyone is going to be paying for parking regardless of where it is.

H3N3 said:

Drivers will still be expected to pay for their parking.  Remember that this is a "study."

chixieonfixie said:

Are they going to remove the parking meter thats sitting next to the BMW in that picture and/or the others down the street?

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