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General Road and Highway Discussion
(07-27-2017, 06:31 PM)Canard Wrote: But the sidewalks are raised... which I would have thought would be structural/integrated into the cross section. (I'm assuming you mean, delete one sidewalk, shift lanes over the sidewalk width, and gain that width on the other side for MUT)

Roughly speaking, yes, as I understand it. I don’t know about the detailed design, but I believe the curb is only a regular 20cm or less so regardless of how the bridge is designed underneath it wouldn’t take much to fudge the elevation of the surface.

The plan seems to say that there are bike lanes on both sides however. I’m guessing this means the general traffic lanes are just a bit narrowed compared to how they are now.

I should also mention that in general I’m opposed to omitting sidewalks in the city but in this particular case I think it’s a less harmful instance. It’s a substantial stretch with absolutely no destinations, and the other side (where the MUT is going) has more pedestrian destinations for a significant additional distance.

Incidentally I was looking at one of the plans linked from the PDF.
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See far right of page 1 here: https://icreate3.esolutionsgroup.ca/2306...native.pdf
My Twitter: @KevinLMaps
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I hope that isn't the final design. That frustrates me so much. That bike lane is a death lane and shouldn't be built.
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A death lane? Please do elaborate some.
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(07-27-2017, 08:58 PM)tomh009 Wrote: A death lane?  Please do elaborate some.

Traffic planners say that two lanes are necessary there because transport trucks are slow going up the bridge approach.  Transport trucks take the whole 3.3 meter lane, and might easily get cut off by impatient drivers.  Cyclists are riding in a 1.5 meter cycle lane, between the transport trucks and a concrete wall, so what happens in that situation.  I certainly would never ride there, and if I were a praying person, I'd pray for the safety of those who choose too.  I'm quite certain that lane makes the road more dangerous, than not having it.
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I can't see a bike lane in the picture.
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Bike lane on the top with no sidewalk.

Also no sidewalk on that side.

Staff originally recommended taking one lane of the bridge to make room for safe bike lanes a MUST and a sidewalk but apparently only drivers showed up at the PUC and quashed that idea.

This road frustrates me so much right now.
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Here's a case where human beings have space taken from them for the sake of various kinds of vehicles (bicycles, cars, transport trucks). I admit that getting rid of a sidewalk here is less egregious than in other places, but it still shouldn't be done. 1500 mm for a sidewalk could be found by reducing the car lanes to 3 meters and 3.3 meters, rather than 3.35 and 3.65.

Better yet, why not put a multi-use trail on both sides of the bridge? Normally I'm not a big fan of them, but in this case traffic among people and bicyclists will still be fairly light, so it shouldn't be hard for them to co-exist. As danbrotherston says, few people in their right minds will choose to bike Weber just because they've got a
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We are talking about Design Alternative 2, right? From what it looks like, the bike lanes end at Albert at the south end, Parkside at the north end, and there is a MUT over the bridge on the east side. At first I was troubled because I usually walk on the west side of the bridge, but that is because there isn't anywhere to walk on the east side. If there is a continuous MUT from Parkside to Blythwood, that seems OK to me.

The plans in the document had things like four lanes going down to three lanes to cross the bridge. Wouldn't that create a bottleneck?
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(07-28-2017, 08:00 AM)timc Wrote: We are talking about Design Alternative 2, right? From what it looks like, the bike lanes end at Albert at the south end, Parkside at the north end, and there is a MUT over the bridge on the east side. At first I was troubled because I usually walk on the west side of the bridge, but that is because there isn't anywhere to walk on the east side. If there is a continuous MUT from Parkside to Blythwood, that seems OK to me.

The plans in the document had things like four lanes going down to three lanes to cross the bridge. Wouldn't that create a bottleneck?

Would it?  It depends on traffic volumes.  I would guess there might be some slight backup at rush hour, but probably minimal--remember, usually the main cause of congestion is intersections.  Of course, I haven't seen staffs actual traffic models, so I can't say for sure.  Staff were very cagey but it was implied that in the 20-30 year timeframe (the timeframe this is planned for) volumes would just barely justify 4 lanes.

That being said...so what?  Why build roads so they can handle the maximum volume we ever see, such a waste, congestion means your roads are just big enough.  There is of course limits, too much congestion costs you, but empty roads are a huge waste of money.

Moreover, is it not worth it for the safety and health (and equality) of our community to enable other modes of transportation even if it means delaying cars slightly.  Even more, perhaps some congestion would encourage more cycling.  Think about what we did with garbage collection.

The design alternative in the linked document (the one I think is being recommended) has a MUT on one side, and a bike lane on the other.  It is truly the worst option, IMO.

But I'll be curious to see what happens in council---I don't think this has been voted on yet---there's a good chance I will choose to speak to this one.
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MidTowner, why are you not a fan of MUT's?

I just wonder because I am a huge fan of them and see them as a total league ahead of sidewalks. I can bike very safely and comfortably on them without getting hit by a car. As a driver, I appreciate that I'm not going to hit someone. As a pedestrian, I guess, you might not like them because now you have to share? That's the only thing I could think of...
For daily ion construction updates, photos and general urban rail news, follow me on twitter! @Canardiain
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(07-28-2017, 08:36 AM)danbrotherston Wrote:
(07-28-2017, 08:00 AM)timc Wrote: We are talking about Design Alternative 2, right? From what it looks like, the bike lanes end at Albert at the south end, Parkside at the north end, and there is a MUT over the bridge on the east side. At first I was troubled because I usually walk on the west side of the bridge, but that is because there isn't anywhere to walk on the east side. If there is a continuous MUT from Parkside to Blythwood, that seems OK to me.

The plans in the document had things like four lanes going down to three lanes to cross the bridge. Wouldn't that create a bottleneck?

Would it?  It depends on traffic volumes.  I would guess there might be some slight backup at rush hour, but probably minimal--remember, usually the main cause of congestion is intersections.  Of course, I haven't seen staffs actual traffic models, so I can't say for sure.  Staff were very cagey but it was implied that in the 20-30 year timeframe (the timeframe this is planned for) volumes would just barely justify 4 lanes.

That being said...so what?  Why build roads so they can handle the maximum volume we ever see, such a waste, congestion means your roads are just big enough.  There is of course limits, too much congestion costs you, but empty roads are a huge waste of money.

Moreover, is it not worth it for the safety and health (and equality) of our community to enable other modes of transportation even if it means delaying cars slightly.  Even more, perhaps some congestion would encourage more cycling.  Think about what we did with garbage collection.

The design alternative in the linked document (the one I think is being recommended) has a MUT on one side, and a bike lane on the other.  It is truly the worst option, IMO.

But I'll be curious to see what happens in council---I don't think this has been voted on yet---there's a good chance I will choose to speak to this one.

Excellent points. I just realized I may have misled people — I’ve been referring to one of the design alternatives, which I think is the “recommended” one, but as you point out, not finalized yet.

I agree about delaying cars slightly, especially considering how much space they take up — slightly narrowing a few car lanes or eliminating one frees up an amount of space that is huge in the context of a pedestrian walkway or even a MUT.

Personally I would prefer to see almost all our busy roads reduced to two lanes, with ample turn lanes so through traffic rarely if ever waits for turning traffic. This would probably mean slightly fatter intersections in a few cases, but it would mean narrower roads almost everywhere and only a small (if any) reduction in capacity. In some places it would be a capacity increase, because right now there are 0 through-only lanes: the left lane is also a left-turn lane and the right lane is also a right-turn lane.

Then if a road is getting really jammed up, built transit lanes or an LRT. Those are the efficient way to handle capacity.
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"MidTowner, why are you not a fan of MUT's?

...As a pedestrian, I guess, you might not like them because now you have to share? That's the only thing I could think of..."

I don't prefer them on bike or on foot, but on foot I don't think of them too much (for all intents and purposes, it's the same as a sidewalk when you're walking). On bike, I'm not a fan of riding alongside people on foot, travelling at a different speed and possibly about to do something I can't predict. I prefer to ride on the street (depending on the street, of course).

That having been said, where there are real space constraints and where there aren't huge numbers of people on foot or bike anyway, I think they can make sense. Like here. MUTs on either side here would be preferable to just skipping a sidewalk on one side.
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My main issue with MUTs is that you've just replaced the car/bike conflict with a bike/pedestrian conflict. It can work in the same way biking on the street works - low speed, low volume. It's a good choice for along arterials like this, but in busy areas they generally don't serve either pedestrians or cyclists well.

My main issue with the way we build MUTs in WR are that they don't seem to know how to deal with them at either signalized intersections or roundabouts. Its inconsistent and usually relies on a cyclist to dismount or break the law.

It also appears that the more recent roads where they are putting in MUTs no longer have painted bike lanes. The downside to this is that most "sport cyclists" are going to be travelling 30+ km/h and will not want to be on a shared path (nor should they for obvious safety reasons; in fact, many places are putting ~20 km/h speed limits on their MUTs). So these cyclists will be back in the general lanes, which isn't good for anyone.

I think the current practice of using MUTs is a good step towards proper separated infrastructure. All they need is a sidewalk next to the MUT and proper treatment at intersections, and the MUT can be a high quality, 3m unidirectional cycle path.
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Oh, and back to the discussion of Weber... I occasionally bike over this bridge, and I just take the lane and consciously try to keep my speed up. As a pretty experienced, confident cyclist, that southbound bike lane sandwiched between the concrete wall of the bridge and a general traffic lane is terrible - no way I would choose that over the MUT. In my opinion, having it there is worse than not, because some inexperienced cyclist is going to think its fine and then find themselves with 1.48m between a concrete wall and a passing transport truck/bus/whatever.

They should either narrow the lanes and put an MUT on both sides, or grow a backbone and go back to the original recommendation.
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