This video has 3 of my favorite things: quiet-street connectivity, wayfinding signs and cyclists riding comfortably in the middle of the lane.
In my years of riding around town, I’ve encountered 2 primary problems for slow-street bicycling in Orlando and Winter Park. One is the damned bricks. The other is you need a GPS to navigate because there is no consistent grid. The upside of the lack of continuous parallel streets is the reduction of cut-thru traffic. If you are a good navigator, you can enjoy a lot of nearly car-free space on some of these streets. And you can make your way from one end of town to the other. There’s also an incentive to gain confidence to venture onto more direct routes.
I have nothing nice to say about the bricks.
I’m not a fan of traffic calming infrastructure. I believe sane speed should be governed by a sense of RESPECT for others (culture change). In the meantime, relentless law enforcement would do the trick (there’s a reason motorists don’t speed through school zones). I’m biased against traffic furniture by some really awful stuff I’ve seen around here.
That said, some of the Berkeley traffic calming approaches look interesting. We’ve been seeing more traffic circles here, they are a nice alternative to stop signs.
I really like the route signs (with mileage to destinations) and the huge bike stencils. Even on a smaller scale, the Sound Loop wayfinding system in Gulf Breeze clearly encourages and facilitates cycling. Those roads had no shoulders, sidewalks, bike lanes or wide lanes, but there were cyclists of all levels with all different types of bikes using the roads. That’s mentioned in the video as well: many of the streets didn’t change much physically, they just now had the signs and stencils to give cyclists a feeling of being welcome and expected in the lane.
No system should detract from promoting the understanding that cycling is possible, safe and legal on all surface streets—regardless of speed, volume and number of lanes. A system that creates a quiet, friendly roadway network for casual cyclists, kids and novices using integrated cycling is a step forward to creating a culture where bicycles are expected as a normal part of traffic. It’s good for the neighborhood residents, the whole community, children, cyclists and pedestrians alike.
- What did you see in the video that you like? Don’t like?
- Would it help you or people you know be more comfortable on the road?
- Are there unintended consequences?
- Does Orlando have suitable roads to implement this type of system?
- Other thoughts…?