BikePGH!

The out-of-town news thread

This topic contains 540 replies, has 54 voices, and was last updated by  J Z 11 hrs, 38 mins.

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salty

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Jun 15 2013 at 10:59am #

Terrible story from Chicago… A friend of mine knew the victim.

http://www.bridgeportcoffeecompany.com/component/content/article/12-general/84-carissa-hinz

http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2013/06/15/woman-21-killed-in-bridgeport-hit-and-run/


paulheckbert

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Jun 17 2013 at 11:18pm #

Los Supercivicos – policing the bike lane with a megaphone and a camera crew

http://www.treehugger.com/bikes/mexican-tv-presenters-hilariously-shame-motorists-driving-bike-lane.html

“No no no no no, don´t invade the designated bike lane. Back up, because you are commiting an illicit. Be careful, easy now, we’re going to help you. Thanks for your civility, thanks a lot!”


J Z

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Jun 18 2013 at 3:53pm #

Badass. She ran him down, and tried to counsel him while in pursuit. Hardcore.

http://gma.yahoo.com/blogs/abc-blogs/marathon-mom-chases-down-bike-thief-183549474.html


Drewbacca

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Jun 21 2013 at 12:00am #

A bicyclist at the monthly D.C. Bike Party (an event that promotes fun and safe cycling in Washington DC) gets hit by a taxi while running a red light near Logan Circle. The bicyclist escaped with a hurt ankle and some road rash.


edmonds59

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Jun 21 2013 at 5:42am #

A letter from a third grader: “Everyone needs to be safer when they bike, walk and even drive. Don’t just think about you also think about the people around you… A meeting or something like that isn’t more important than a person.”
Dumb kids.

http://www.downtownexpress.com/2013/06/19/notes-on-traffic-safety-from-the-3rd-grade/


jonawebb

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Jun 21 2013 at 6:23am #

I love this. The Dutch have a parking problem: http://mobile.nytimes.com/2013/06/21/world/europe/a-sea-of-bikes-swamps-amsterdam-a-city-fond-of-pedaling.html?from=homepage


Marko82

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Jun 21 2013 at 7:10am #

^Dutch article:
the city will invest $135 million to improve the biking infrastructure, including the creation of 38,000 bike parking racks “in the hot spots.”

“We don’t think there’s a crisis; we want to keep it attractive,” Mr. Koorn said. He paused, then added, “You cannot imagine if all this traffic were cars.”


edmonds59

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Jun 21 2013 at 7:15am #

Marko82 wrote:“You cannot imagine if all this traffic were cars.”

+1,000. That’s some right thinkin’.


jonawebb

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Jun 21 2013 at 7:36am #

The problem is, from an economics point of view, that use of this free resource will expand until parking is overwhelmed again, no matter how many spaces they add. This is the tragedy of the commons, the same reason adding more roads doesn’t reduce motor vehicle congestion in the long run. What they should do is implement a system of paying for parking (parking elsewhere being illegal). But the Dutch don’t like other folks telling them what to do, so it might take a while for them to do this.


Drewbacca

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Jun 21 2013 at 8:57am #

Those lazy Dutch riding one person per bicycle… a proper economic incentive will get them all on tandems. ;)

I don’t know @jonawebb, I think your incentive would only encourage people to leave bikes at home and walk. If there isn’t enough parking space then you end up with a sort of bottle-neck. I don’t see how paid parking is any better… it just shifts the responsibility away from the gubmint and to the private sector.


jonawebb

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Jun 21 2013 at 9:01am #

You don’t have to make the price so high that people don’t use their bikes. Just high enough so they don’t cache extra bicycles all over the place so they have one if they need it.
Think of it like congestion pricing, or the carbon tax. You have a “free”, over-exploited resource. By putting a price on it, even a subsidized price, you prevent its over-exploitation.


byogman

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Jun 21 2013 at 10:09am #

In principle I like pricing, but I think the overhead required to charge for bicycle parking is often greater than the value of the real estate the bicycle occupies. In those situations, what you need is just a low overhead way of periodically clearing abandoned bikes.

I like low frequency sweeps. Put a highly visible sticker on the bike parked at the rack asking “Is this bike abandoned? Remove this sticker if it is not. Bikes left here more than X days become the property of “. If the bike is there, sticker on, when the next sweep occurs in X days, time to take it away.


jonawebb

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Jun 21 2013 at 10:20am #

@byogman, there doesn’t have to be a lot of overhead. Say, an annual sticker that gives you the right to park in the city. I would be willing to bet that if they implemented this system, even with a low price for the sticker, the problem would be solved right away, because all the abandoned bicycles could be easily identified and removed. But if it wasn’t, and there was still over-exploitation of public parking space, you could add more parking / raise the price of the sticker, until you got a balance.
It’s just not that hard a problem to solve, really. The only issue is that people are going to get mad that they have to pay for something they used to get for free.


Mikhail

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Jun 21 2013 at 11:18am #

jonawebb wrote:The problem is, from an economics point of view, that use of this free resource will expand until parking is overwhelmed again, no matter how many spaces they add.

In very abstract form I would agree with you. In reality I would not. They are talking about 152 bike parking lot. Now imagine we convert 5 story high garage at my work into pure biking garage. It has 780 cars capacity with space between parking rows enough that two cars go in different directions can go around one walking person. Each parking space could easily accommodate 4 bikes in a rack and provide space to walk around rack filled with bikes. Ans extra row of racks could be installed just in the middle those two lane passage plus 20 corners with 8 bike racks. So the same structure would serve 780*6+20*8=4840 bikes. This is enough to handle almost all people on a Technology Drive. And we have open car parking lot for another 80 cars.

I think three-five multilevel garages in downtown converted to pure bike parking would cover all people working in downtown area (http://www.pittsburghparking.com/garages-and-attended-lots):

1. The Smithfield Liberty Garage is situated between Smithfield Street and Liberty Avenue Downtown. The garage capacity is 596 vehicles.
2. The Ft. Duquesne and Sixth Street Garage is situated between Ft. Duquesne Boulevard and Sixth Street Downtown. The garage capacity is 920 vehicles
3. The Grant Street Transportation Center Red Garage A: 428, Blue Garage B: 563.
4. The Mellon Square Garage capacity is 798 vehicles.
5. The First Avenue Garage and Station has 1,243 spaces.

27288 bikes right on the spot. what is interesting, parking price per car for around $12 per 24 hour. You can put 6 times more bikes and price would be $2 per bike to keep the same revenue. Taking into account that bikes cause much less damage, do not need that level of reinforcement of floor maintenance is much lower.

So I think Dutch people could multilevel parking to resolve their problem.

http://www.the-village.ru/village/situation/abroad/114221-idei-dlya-goroda-veloparkovki-v-yaponii — this is a russian blog from one of the person visited Japan and she was amazed how they implemented it.






jonawebb

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Jun 21 2013 at 11:30am #

@Mikhail, it sounds from the article that they’re already doing that, and getting overwhelmed. But if, in fact, they can just build their way out of this problem (note that building in Amsterdam might be harder than you think), I’m fine with that.


Mikhail

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Jun 21 2013 at 1:26pm #

I was wrong in my calculations. Look at the picture in our garage (I took it 15 minute ago on my way back from lunch ride):

With plenty of space so rack could be placed further from wall and it would provide normal access to the rack on other side. And if to make rakes share two parking spots… It would be 20 bikes per spot in our garage and the same is true for middle row. So it would around 15 bikes per car spot in our garage or 780*15+20*10=11,900 bikes per our garage…


Mikhail

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Jun 21 2013 at 1:29pm #

it sounds from the article that they’re already doing that, and getting overwhelmed. But if, in fact, they can just build their way out of this problem (note that building in Amsterdam might be harder than you think), I’m fine with that.

John, I never saw underground bike parking there. But I was there about 20 years ago. I’ll ask my friends to look for it when they are going to visit.

PS From what I’ve heard it took some courage and non standard thinking to start building underground car parking in Paris . Probably, it’s a case here too.


jonawebb

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Jun 21 2013 at 1:34pm #

One of the responses to my post on the NYTimes site mentions underground parking:

F.i. In Groningen, thé student-city in the North of The Netherlands, the “dungeons” of the new library offer free bike-parking. Many big corporations re-furbish their cellars so employees can park their bikes there.

but I don’t know if the issues are different there than in Amsterdam.
Oh, the article mentions they’re building underground parking at the train station:

By 2020 the number is expected to be lifted to 17,000, in part because of the construction of a $27 million underground garage in front of the enormous red brick building. A decade ago, a three-story parking garage designed for 2,500 bikes was erected; it now often accommodates almost 3,500.

My guess from the article is they’re running into the same problem that makes adding new highways not work for solving traffic congestion: people just use more of a “free” shared resource. So they can build all the bicycle parking garages they want, and they’ll just fill up as people buy extra bicycles. The N+1 problem on a city-wide scale.
With traffic congestion the solution is congestion pricing, but that drives motorists nuts. Here the solution is charging for bike parking, but that drives the Dutch nuts. So until they get their act together and decide it’s more important to have some order to bike parking than not to pay for it, they’re going to have this problem.


Steven

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Jun 21 2013 at 2:41pm #

If people are willing to pay $500 (say) for an additional bike, requiring them to also pay an annual fee to park that bike won’t work unless the fee is comparable. With a $50 annual fee, you’re just making bikes slightly more expensive.

Since the number of bikes is already limited by the price of a bike, they just need to build sufficient bike parking for that limited number. It’s not like a public grazing area where you can use public land to feed your sheep to make money to buy additional sheep, ad infinitum.

The problem of abandoned bikes is separate, and can be solved with stickers, as byogman said. No need to penalize everyone by artificially raising bike prices with a parking fee.

(Parking fees could be useful to get cyclists to park in one place, not another, but it sounds like that’s not much of an issue for them. And those would be location-specific of course.)


Mikhail

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Jun 21 2013 at 5:48pm #

Steven wrote:The problem of abandoned bikes is separate, and can be solved with stickers, as byogman said. No need to penalize everyone by artificially raising bike prices with a parking fee.

Well, I like Japanese system since:
1. Bicycles are protected from elements.
2. No other person has access t your bike (hard to mock bike or even steal it).
3. It’s easy to see if bike is abandoned by account info.
4. The price is small — something like 90 yens per day and there are normal monthly passes.

If we have here something like this I would gladly pay those 80 (?) cents per day.


salty

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Jun 22 2013 at 8:54am #

There are definitely underground and multi-level bike parking garages in The Netherlands. I didn’t take pictures of any of the ones in Amsterdam, but there are plenty of pictures on the net:
general image search: http://www.google.com/search?tbm=isch&q=amsterdam%20bike%20garage
underground parking at zuid: http://www.flickr.com/photos/jamesbondsv/sets/72157625678594503/
somewhat old article about bike parking: http://www.bakfiets-en-meer.nl/2007/06/14/bike-parking-in-holland-installment-1/

Here are a couple parking facilities I saw in Leiden… maybe those estimates above could be doubled :)




Mr. Destructicity

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Jun 25 2013 at 9:22am #

Reporter for the Toronto Sun tries riding a bike for the first time, reaches entirely wrong conclusion…

Sun Reporter Gets an Understanding of Cyclists

…followed by a nice takedown from a Toronto blogger.

Cyclists Understand Perfectly


edmonds59

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Jun 25 2013 at 9:41am #

Holy crap that blog is awesome.


edmonds59

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Jun 26 2013 at 12:12pm #

http://www.wtae.com/news/local/bicyclist-from-pittsburgh-killed-in-bethany-beach-crash/-/9681086/20674740/-/gy7mauz/-/index.html


buffalo buffalo

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Jun 28 2013 at 7:55am #

Brooklyn: “Man Allegedly Smashes Bike Under His Car In Bed-Stuy, Then Drives Away” — cyclist waiting for red light hit from behind by texting driver. Maybe. This one admittedly has a bit of a tabloid flavour to it I’m not sure I like the taste of.

However, this one from DC is definitely legit: “A driver hit me on my bike, and the police refused to believe it wasn’t my fault” http://ggwash.org/19284
Driver, witness both claimed cyclist ran red light before running into a car turning into a parking lot. PD camera clearly shows rider passing on green, being cut off.

I returned to the Third District police station, where a supervisor told me that only the officer who wrote the report and the ticket could change it. He asked me to tell my story again.

“Wait, you mean, you were biking and you want a ticket canceled?” he said, incredulous. “We all know how bikers behave. It must have been your fault. C’mon. You are a biker.”

When I suggested that he review the video, he refused. The supervisor said he’d contact the officer but that I shouldn’t expect anything to come of it, as I was a bicyclist.

(Sidebar: “@ggwash How many ways will people find to blame a cyclist for a crash even with video evidence? We’re still counting…” http://greatergreaterwashington.org/post/19284/it-must-have-been-your-fault-cmon-you-are-a-biker/#comment-190275 )


salty

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Jun 29 2013 at 11:08am #

It would be nice to see something remotely like this happen here… http://systemicfailure.wordpress.com/2013/06/22/paris-converts-riverfront-expressway-into-pedestrian-walkway/


edmonds59

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Jun 30 2013 at 6:22am #

Holy shit. This happens, thought you should know. Man I hope all those people aren’t logging their endomondo miles.
Watch for the hand slap at about 1:30. Beautiful.


Mikhail

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Jun 30 2013 at 7:49am #

I don’t like CM and this video just shows why. :( Two lanes, over yellow lane, etc.


StuInMcCandless

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Jun 30 2013 at 10:10am #

Yeah, CM’s about screwing the rules, but…

546 riders!

We just don’t have rides that size around here, outside of the Keg Ride. Your average Flock ride tops out at about 75, and that goes for every pre-Flock CM ride I was ever in here. Same for the Undies ride the other night.

The 2011 Philly Naked Bike Ride was about 2,100 riders, only in its third or fourth year.

We’re doing wondrous things for advocacy here, but we’re not getting 500+ riders to go down the street all at once, and there’s something wrong with that.

Also, I mainly see white faces on the Cleveland ride, maybe 20 non-white out of 546 riders. What’s up with that? Same goes for all our rides. Where are all the non-white cyclists in Pittsburgh? If they won’t hang with us, fine, but why aren’t they hanging with each other? Is bike riding something only white people do?


jonawebb

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Jun 30 2013 at 1:08pm #

http://archive.constantcontact.com/fs173/1102316596448/archive/1113593029110.html


salty

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Jun 30 2013 at 2:34pm #

“The End of Car Culture” in the NYT: http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/30/sunday-review/the-end-of-car-culture.html


Mikhail

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Jun 30 2013 at 8:52pm #

StuInMcCandless wrote:Yeah, CM’s about screwing the rules, but…

And this is a reason I am not going to participate in those.

546 riders!

We just don’t have rides that size around here, outside of the Keg Ride. Your average Flock ride tops out at about 75, and that goes for every pre-Flock CM ride I was ever in here. Same for the Undies ride the other night.

Well, not all the time but last year BikePGH festival got much more (I believe I’ve heard above 2,000). And 12 bridges got around 70(80?). Team Decaf rides on a regular basis get 65-70 people. Tour the Montour tops 100 for last three years. Three state ride last year got 65 people.

And there are two keg rides. :)

The 2011 Philly Naked Bike Ride was about 2,100 riders, only in its third or fourth year.

We’re doing wondrous things for advocacy here, but we’re not getting 500+ riders to go down the street all at once, and there’s something wrong with that.

We don’t have 500 at once in one place. I believe we have much more in a day in different parts of Pittsburgh and around. What is wrong with it? In my opinion — nothing.

Also, I mainly see white faces on the Cleveland ride, maybe 20 non-white out of 546 riders. What’s up with that? Same goes for all our rides. Where are all the non-white cyclists in Pittsburgh? If they won’t hang with us, fine, but why aren’t they hanging with each other? Is bike riding something only white people do?

Hm, what about ladies? I don’t see a lot of ladies on most rides. Tuesday’s Team Decaf rides — if we see 10 ladies out off 40 riders then it’s really high number. Janie tried to organize ladies only ride on trail last year — no luck. There is Barbs’ ride in Murrysville and not that many ladies shows up.

Thursday, July 11
6:00pm
Ride with the Barbs
When: Thu, July 11, 6:00pm – 8:30pm
Where: 4121 Sardis Rd Murrysville, PA 15668 (map)
Description: We will meet at The Sloan Elementary School parking lot in Murrysville at 4121 Sardis Rd Murrysville, PA 15668 Ride will be 20-25 miles with hills.

Be ready to ride a 6:00 PM sharp. Rain Cancels.

Contact rwbbarnes@gmail.com, 412-760-2743


Pierce

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Jul 1 2013 at 12:27am #

@bill

That video reminds me of what I remember of our critical masses

But that’s all anarchy of course…


J Z

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Jul 1 2013 at 10:28am #

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Society/2013/0630/The-bike-boom?nav=87-frontpage-entryInsideMonitor


paulheckbert

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Jul 1 2013 at 11:16am #

J Z wrote:
http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Society/2013/0630/The-bike-boom?nav=87-frontpage-entryInsideMonitor

Quotes from that Christian Science Monitor article:

The Dutch use their bikes for 26 percent of all their trips compared with 1 percent of Americans. Danes use bikes for 19 percent of their travel, while the Germans tap them for 10 percent.

Waters writes “Bicycling is part of the solution to every problem our society faces be it health, environment, economic, or social.” [that's a bold claim!]

I was disappointed that the article didn’t mention that only 25% of American bike commuters are women.


J Z

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Jul 1 2013 at 11:07pm #

http://www.npr.org/blogs/codeswitch/2013/07/01/197416434/minority-cyclists-black-women-bike?utm_source=NPR&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=20130701


salty

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Jul 2 2013 at 5:11am #

SSDC… Driver somehow plows into the middle of a pack of 14 riders injuring 4 – but not to worry since he “simply didn’t see them” http://www.stuff.co.nz/national/8866293/Cyclists-hit-by-car-sent-flying


StuInMcCandless

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Jul 2 2013 at 6:08am #

Great NPR story. I’ve been following Ms. Davis on Twitter for three years.

Also, her sister is in Pittsburgh, a physician at UPMC, and occasionally makes the news.


StuInMcCandless

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Jul 2 2013 at 5:37pm #

Speaking of whom, there was this pair of tweets just today:

“Bike lanes and walkable neighborhoods promote physical activity and influence positive behavioral changes” – Dr. Esa M Davis AKA my sister

…and…

Nothing like wearing my sister down to the point she’s talking about bike infrastructure in medical articles


Mr. Destructicity

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Jul 3 2013 at 8:05am #

Graeme Obree unveils the finished Beastie

For CMU folks, it looks like some unholy hybrid of bicycle and buggy…

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