Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Kludgy Details on 12th Street at Fairview

With changes to the Oregon Legislature, the path to a Clean Energy Jobs/Carbon Cap and Trade bill sure looks smoother. Nationally, Congressman DeFazio will likely have more say on any transportation legislation. But there's still a lot of uncertainty, and it's not like there was one single, unambiguous gesture made by the Electorate.

There are surely other things to note, but others will note them better.

So let's focus on local detail instead.

On the 12th Street project between Hoyt and Fairview, more of the striping has been done, and yet more of the design is coming into focus. But some details sure seem kludgy. (Some previous notes here.)

Looking south - two driveways (near, and at blue sign)
make dashed bike lane transition tricky and stressful
I don't like the way the bike lane transitions from the right hand margin to the left of the turn lane. There are two driveways right in the mixing zone of the dashed bike lane, so that makes three right-hook opportunities from drivers turning into the driveways or preparing to turn on Fairview.

There was talk about adding green paint to the bike lane here with ARTS funding, and that may help. But it might have been better not to make the transition in front of two driveways.

Swerving around rain gardens (looking north)

Short curb slopes down
left to right
The in-line rain garden design just seems really odd. People on foot or in a mobility device have to swerve around them - and also around several sets of mailboxes; it's a regular slalom course! And the curb slopes down to the street, and it's easy to imagine a tipped cane missing the slenderest portion. It's not clear that a blind person could navigate them easily. Or even a sighted person walking in the dark. Maybe these designs meet ADA standards, but they sure look awkward.

Maybe underground utilities dictated the location here, but even if there was no other choice, it shows how we privilege the auto with straight lines, not chicanes, but put "chicanery" in the sidewalk.

For contrast, here's an earlier picture of an off-set rain garden that keeps the sidewalk in-line.

New rain garden, placed behind the sidewalk (in September)

Addendum, early evening

Here's a couple of clips from the NACTO Urban Bikeway Design Guide. What they show suggests the treatment here on 12th is far from best practice.

The main drawing doesn't show driveways
And they add as a "don't" a caution against the weaving merge


Salem Breakfast on Bikes said...

Updated with a couple of NACTO clips.

Anonymous said...

Despite DeFazio's bona fides as a bike mechanic and cyclist, he may embrace an thorough-going autoism in the bigger picture.

From the Register-Guard:

"DeFazio also mentioned in the letter [to the OTC about the I-105 project] his opposition to proposed tolling on congested sections of Interstate 5 and Interstate 205 in the Portland area. The letter served as a follow-up to a Nov. 1 conversation DeFazio had with Baney and another member of the state commission."

Would have though he'd be in favor of decongestion pricing.