Bike Summit: Cycling For Sale

Here’s some more news from the Complete Streets meeting.

We were last seen talking about the challenge of making room for cycling on streets.

Someone noted that the last thing one wanted to do was to remove on street parking.

Personally, I hate to look at things through this lens of a “loss” of parking, but rather to think in terms of what we are gaining.

Someone suggested that other cities should emulated Fresno and to hire an official sales expert to sell cycling and road diets. Of course, I feel that’s totally brilliant.

Also, we spoke of the usual notion of asking for more than we think we’ll actually get rather than starting with what we think that they will think is “fair” then backing away.

We also talked about the three speed limits: the one designed for, the one posted, and what people actually drive.

Then we talked about that not only are engineers free of the chains of following the “law and code” in design manuals, but they have the RESPONSIBILITY to follow their own judgment.

Then they spoke of the “Green Hierarchy” of road design where we prioritize for the most vulnerable vehicles. Brilliant.

Also, since most city streets are free–save for a few toll roads–trying to create a congestion free street is a fool’s errand. Free things tend to be taken up, freely and road space is no exception.

Another good quote was we should start planning from the “outside in rather than inside out.” This means that we should prioritize non-motorized vehicles then finally ask what space is left for automobiles rather than making a lot of travel lanes for cars then try to squeeze transit, pedestrians, and cycling on the fringes of roads and wonder why we don’t have any space.

Another excellent quote is that “We you are successful at determining the mission, engineers are problem solvers.”

We shouldn’t say a problem can’t be solved by engineers and give up. We should clearly define the problem then give it to engineers to chew on.

Overall, there were a lot of really inspiration and brilliant things that were said. Everything they said had resonance for me and was totally the opposite of advocates from San Diego were saying.

Thus, I feel that local advocates here are either totally ignorant of how the government, laws, and engineering work or they are completely lying about things.

There’s far more hope for cycling in California than I had ever imagined.

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