The Chainlink

Sacrificing future Bikes Lanes for Anti-Dooring Campaign from the City

How many miles of future Bike Lanes would be acceptable to sacrifice for a proper Anti-Dooring campaign from the City of Chicago?

The funds will have to come from somewhere. Why not money that was already ear marked for bike infrastructure?

How much does each Bicycle Lane cost to build? How much would a Anti-Dooring Campaign cost? Stickers are cheap. Web pages can be cheaply added to existing pages on the City site. How much does it cost to add signs to existing street poles? Would Alderman's offices take part for maximum saturation of the message?

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LOL, you must be really trying hard to get doored then. The beauty of the Kinzie is that you don't have to focus on avoiding doors and can instead concentrate on the upcoming intersection/obstacle/etc.

Bill Savage said:

I've almost been doored repeatedly on Kedzie and Elston's alleged protected bike lanes by people getting out of the passenger side of their newly parked cars.  Unless we stumble onto a few billion dollars to redesign the city's entire infrastructure from the ground up, these half-@ssed "protected" lanes are not much better than striped lanes.

Allen Wrench said:

Oh, come on! Of all the counterproductive foolish things to try to do! It's wonderful to stick stickers on parking meters saying please don't hit me with your door, but if you have a protected bike lane that's designed well the opportunity shouldn't arise! Chicago needs a bit more work on designing good bike lanes, but as someone who's lived in many other countries that have good ones, I can only support building more. Instead of stickers think CONCRETE. Barriers, planters, divided lanes. Make 2-way streets one way for cars and have bikes on the other side. Give bikes preferential green traffic signals. THAT's how you avoid dooring.

Hope your sticker saves your butt - I'll be pushing for more cement.

Wow, masterful topic hijack!

/bowing


Then again the OP was trolling to begin with using the "sacrificing bike lanes" so I guess they had it coming...

Assuming this is about the Green Party/Tea Party stuff above?

Makes sense to me....

...that posting your dogma-entrenched political opinions wherever you can slip it in increases the chances that maybe someone somewhere will read it.

James BlackHeron said:

Wow, masterful topic hijack!

/bowing


Then again the OP was trolling to begin with using the "sacrificing bike lanes" so I guess they had it coming...

1. Their is as much debris on the street as there is in the bike lane. Now you can actually dodge it because you don't have to have 100% of your attention focused on getting doored.

 

2. So the 20 or so days out of the year where there is snow and it sticks should be grounds for not having a protected bike lane? On snow days, use the road just like pedestrians do when sidewalks aren't cleared.

 

3. You can focus on cross traffic now well before you get to the intersection because you're not worrying about getting doored (see item 1)

 

4.  A lot of things create a false sense of security...helmets for example. And I doubt much is going to protect you from an out of control car, protected lane or not. We've incorporated bikes into traffic for the last 100 years, it hasn't really worked too well. Look at places in Europe where bicycling infrastructure exists, seperated from car traffic. It works or at least much better. So, perhaps it's time to try something new?
 
Clint H said:

I've discussed this before here and in other places, but here are my problems with protected bike lanes:

1. Debris. I predicted this before they built the lanes, and I've seen it play out on Elston. The protected lanes run along the portion of the road where debris is most likely to collect. Over time, this is the portion of the road that deteriorates most quickly. Bikes are being relegated to riding in trash.

2. Snow. I can't imagine that as the number of lanes increase, the city will keep up with snow removal. We barely saw any snow last year, and the city still had trouble keeping its mile along Kedzie clear. We have yet to see an actual test of this, but I predict that in major snow events, the city will give priority to clearing car lanes and will save the bike lanes for last ... unless the bike lanes wind up being used for snow storage.

3. Increased cross-traffic conflict. Cars moving in and out of parking lots or cross streets tend to block the lanes. Turning cars have a harder time seeing bicyclists (the view of which are blocked by parked cars), so they're less cautious about turning. I've almost been clipped on Elston many times. In area of high pedestrian traffic, they become extensions of the sidewalk, while people moving to parked cars don't look for bikes. I think a protected lane on Wells, for instance, would be nearly impassable.

4. They create a false sense of security. Bicyclists let their guard down under the false notion that they're "safe." But a little plastic stick won't stop an out-of-control car. Meanwhile, car traffic is more likely to discount the existence of bikes on streets without the lanes, under the false notion that "they're not supposed to be here." It increases the demonization of bikes rather than incorporates them into traffic.



spencewine said:

The Kinzie Protected bike lane is the best part of my daily commute. Everyday when I get to that section of my commute I feel like a ton of weight has been lifted from my shoulders. So, it's hard for me to understand why, exactly, people, especially other bicyclists, take such issue with them. Can someone please explain why the protected bike lanes are so bad? I'm truly curious.

It's one thing to explain and expound upon the reasons why one comes to a particular conclusion or opinion they have relating to the topic at hand, and in so doing bring in personal philosophy and such as exposition.   While it's another to do as you said and slip it into wherever it can be crammed almost as a form of repetitive spam -relevant or not.

I was merely stating that this was a pretty masterful example of walking that line -and perhaps bending/stretching it right to the breaking point.



h' said:

Assuming this is about the Green Party/Tea Party stuff above?

Makes sense to me....

...that posting your dogma-entrenched political opinions wherever you can slip it in increases the chances that maybe someone somewhere will read it.


It could also be in reverse type on the front.

Mark said:

a t-shirt or jersey campaign with some type of "WATCH YOUR DOOR" or "CHECK YOUR MIRROR" or some other slogan in large type on the back?

When space, traffic flow and road conditions allow, I ride outside the door zone as much as possible.  There are many places/times where it simply isn't a workable option.  In those cases, I ride slowly (5-10 mph), watch very carefully for any opening doors and am prepared to stop quickly at any time.  If there's an opening for me to take the lane and doing so is workable, I'll do it.  However, sometimes it's a choice between riding in the door zone and not going forward on that street.

Elizabeth said:

I agree that education is very important.  But as a cyclist -- why not just bike outside the door zone?  I've had doors just miss me many times, and the driver usually looks up shocked as they realize what almost happened.  But as long as I'm out of reach of the door, it doesn't cause a problem.  Yes, moving cars have to be more careful when passing, but that seems like a good thing.  

I think part of the education aspect is educating drivers about why a cyclist might be riding 3 or 4 feet from the parked cars (or on the left-most edge of the bike lane), rather than closer to parked cars.

+1

Sarah D. said:

There's currently nothing at the IL DMV that about-to-be-licensed auto drivers can read or be tested on about how to "share the road" with cyclists. I agree with what others have suggested (here and elsewhere) that anti-dooring and roadsharing education has to start with new and re-licensing drivers.

But advocating for better drivers' education should not preclude us from also making gains in infrastructure that supports cycling in this (otherwise) perfect-for-cycling city. Do both. Do more.

Thank you!

spencewine said:

1. Their is as much debris on the street as there is in the bike lane. Now you can actually dodge it because you don't have to have 100% of your attention focused on getting doored.

 

2. So the 20 or so days out of the year where there is snow and it sticks should be grounds for not having a protected bike lane? On snow days, use the road just like pedestrians do when sidewalks aren't cleared.

 

3. You can focus on cross traffic now well before you get to the intersection because you're not worrying about getting doored (see item 1)

 

4.  ... Look at places in Europe where bicycling infrastructure exists, seperated from car traffic. It works or at least much better. So, perhaps it's time to try something new?

I just ordered a replacement for for a customer who was doored by a car passenger while ina protected bike lane...

Bike lanes are not the answer; we cannot put lanes on all the roads in Chicago therefore a education campaign does more good than bike lanes.  Remember many of the people living in Chicago did not learn to drive here and are not used to living in a world where they have to check traffic before opening their door after parking.  People who have lived and driven in a city for a long time do it as second nature but those from the suburbs have to acquire the habit.

Allen Wrench said:

Oh, come on! Of all the counterproductive foolish things to try to do! It's wonderful to stick stickers on parking meters saying please don't hit me with your door, but if you have a protected bike lane that's designed well the opportunity shouldn't arise! Chicago needs a bit more work on designing good bike lanes, but as someone who's lived in many other countries that have good ones, I can only support building more. Instead of stickers think CONCRETE. Barriers, planters, divided lanes. Make 2-way streets one way for cars and have bikes on the other side. Give bikes preferential green traffic signals. THAT's how you avoid dooring.

Hope your sticker saves your butt - I'll be pushing for more cement.

You want to help with education about checking for traffic before opening a car door point out to people that instead of a bike they could end up opening it into a truck if they don't check first...

I don't doubt that it's possible to get doored while in the protected bike lane, but you probably need to be riding on the very left side of the lane or in the //// zone. Regardless, if you happen to get doored in a protected bike lane, you are not going to get run over by a semi-truck in the process. So, while you may be bruised and have some broken bones, you're probably not going to get killed. The best way to get people educated about bicycling is to get people out on their bikes. It sounds to me like your answer is to keep Chicago the same, aka, don't develop infrastructure because it's a waste.... Sorry, but that answer is not going to get people on their bikes. Giving people a place that they feel reasonably safe riding a bike will go a lot further in getting people on bikes than what you are suggesting. Protected bike lanes at the very least allow people to feel safer than riding in the door zone with traffic ready to crush them on the left if they fall off.

Edit: Don't get me wrong, protected bike lanes aren't the magic bullet either, but it's an improvement.
notoriousDUG said:

I just ordered a replacement for for a customer who was doored by a car passenger while ina protected bike lane...

Bike lanes are not the answer; we cannot put lanes on all the roads in Chicago therefore a education campaign does more good than bike lanes.  Remember many of the people living in Chicago did not learn to drive here and are not used to living in a world where they have to check traffic before opening their door after parking.  People who have lived and driven in a city for a long time do it as second nature but those from the suburbs have to acquire the habit.

Allen Wrench said:

Oh, come on! Of all the counterproductive foolish things to try to do! It's wonderful to stick stickers on parking meters saying please don't hit me with your door, but if you have a protected bike lane that's designed well the opportunity shouldn't arise! Chicago needs a bit more work on designing good bike lanes, but as someone who's lived in many other countries that have good ones, I can only support building more. Instead of stickers think CONCRETE. Barriers, planters, divided lanes. Make 2-way streets one way for cars and have bikes on the other side. Give bikes preferential green traffic signals. THAT's how you avoid dooring.

Hope your sticker saves your butt - I'll be pushing for more cement.

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