Wednesday, March 16, 2011

FHWA clarifies status of on-road bicycle treatments

This just came in from the Association of Pedestrian and Bicycle Professionals listserve from Bill Schultheiss at the Toole Design Group. I've just copied most of his message here since it does as good a job as any in summarizing the FHWA fact sheet:

Federal Highway has just developed a very helpful resource page that summarizes which bicycle facility traffic control devices (Bike Signals, bike boxes, etc) are permitted in the MUTCD. For those devices which are not in the MUTCD, they have listed which devices are currently being researched and are considered experimental devices requiring approval for use.

The Bicycle Technical Committee (BTC) of the National Committee for Uniform Traffic Control Devices is presently developing proposals for the use of color, bicycle boxes, bicycle signals, priority shared lane markings, door zone markings. For further information on the BTC please see the following link:

Monday, March 14, 2011

Op-Ed: Shouldn’t bicycle planning and facility design experts at least ride bikes?

When I go around New Jersey talking about the importance of advocating for better bicycle amenities I’m often told by other bicyclists that they are frustrated, fed up and don’t bother even trying anymore. These bicyclists often complain that when they have petitioned for facilities in the past, if something was built, it was entirely unsuited to their needs. The typical complaint I hear is, “Why bother?!?! If something actually does get built, it will just get designed by someone who has obviously never even ridden a bike!” (I’ve honestly heard close to this exact complaint from several cyclists.)

While I can say with confidence that things are indeed changing for the better here in New Jersey, the unfortunate reality is that these bicyclists’ frustrations are well founded and their misgivings are all too often manifested in the concrete, asphalt, paint and steel of many of the facilities designed for bicycle use around the State. And while the professionals that plan and design these facilities may be very well intentioned and completely sold on the idea and wisdom of accommodating bicyclists, the reality remains that if the expert is not an experienced bicyclist themselves, they may continue to be blind to the potential hazards unintentionally incorporated into their designs and plans.

So I propose a theoretical test for anyone in charge of planning and/or designing bicycle facilities. This test would even be helpful for those in charge of awarding grant funds for bicycle facilities, as they would be more capable of critically evaluating the merits of a project and its usefulness for cyclists. I admittedly set the bar pretty high but that’s the point. If a candidate could pass this test then I would have unquestioning confidence with their professional opinions relative to proposed bicycle facilities. So beyond the candidate’s relative professional and academic achievements (degrees / experience in engineering, planning, etc.) the candidate would need to pass the following requirements to be a qualified bicycle planning and facility design expert. Those are:

Mandatory competences –

1. Theoretical and practical mastery of Smart Cycling as taught by the League of American Cyclists

Sunday, March 13, 2011

National Park Service to Launch Del. Water Gap Bus Service

From the Pocono Record:

Free bus service from East Stroudsburg to Milford will enhance the way the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area is used by local residents and visitors.

Monroe County Transit Authority will operate two new routes, Saturdays and Sundays, from April 30 to Oct. 3.

Full Article

Buses will accommodate bicycles, the Riverview Route (South) will connect East Stroudsburg with Bushkill falls and will have a bike rack. The Mcdade Mover (north) will connect Bushkill Falls and Dingman Boat Launch with Milford and will have a trailer to carry bikes and canoes. The routes will connect with commuter bus services to NYC in Stroudsburg and Milford (unfortunately neither connection is bike friendly). The 32 mile long McDade Recreational Trail is nearly complete - with only about 4 miles of gaps (the gaps can be bridged by the bus or riding on narrow but truck-free US 209). The path is mostly stone dust or packed gravel.

View Delaware River Bridge Bike Ped Crossings and the new bus routes on a larger map

The toll collector stands in the center lane for the Dingmans Ferry Bridge connecting Pike County PA with Sussex County in the Delaware Water Gap National Recreation Area.

The MacDade Trail in Delaware Water Gap, PA - Image Friends of DEWA

Friday, March 11, 2011

National Bike Summit News Rundown

Unfortunately once again, I was unable to make it down to the National Bicycle Summit in Washington, D.C. this week.  However, New Jersey was able to send a large contingent this year as usual.  Anyway, I figured the next best thing to being there would be a comprehensive news rundown, so here it goes.

National Bike Summit 2011 Program / Adgenda
League of American Bicyclist

LaHood Kicks Off National Bike Summit
Streetsblog Capitol Hill • Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Obama’s Transpo Secretary Is a Big Fan of Janette Sadik-Khan
Streetsblog Capitol Hill • Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Cyclists Gathered at Bike Summit Are Told Not to “Wait for Washington”
Streetsblog Capitol Hill • Wednesday, March 9, 2011

New York Transportation Chief Defends Bike Lanes
The New York Times • Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Thursday, March 10, 2011

East Coast Greenway challenges residents to walk across New Jersey

The below comes to WalkBikeJersey from the East Coast Greenway Alliance and the FreeWalkers.  In an effort to maintain full disclosure to our readers, I (Andy B.) am now working for the East Coast Greenway Alliance as their New Jersey Outreach and Events Coordinator.

The East Coast Greenway Alliance along with the FreeWalkers (a long distance walking group) invite the public to strive for a new personal goal in a program called the Cross-Jersey Walking Challenge. The program is free and challenges individuals to walk 100 miles across the entire state – from Trenton to New York City within the next 12 months – along the East Coast Greenway.

The Cross-Jersey Walking Challenge will follow the East Coast Greenway’s entire New Jersey trail which represents about 100 miles out of its 3,000 miles length along the Eastern U.S. from Maine to Key West. Walkers who wish to participate enter and track their progress at the website ( throughout the year.

While walkers may choose to walk the distance at any time on their own, the FreeWalkers have scheduled three free organized walks that in total cover the entire 100 mile stretch of the ECG:
Mass transportation and carpooling are encouraged for the walks which happen to be mostly in proximity of the North East Corridor and other rail lines for easy connections. Busses and light rail can also be used for participants from various areas.  See NJ Transit for more details.

For more information on the program or related events contact Paul Kiczek, FreeWalkers,

Bike Fest in Morristown on Memorial Day Friday

This comes to WalkBikeJersey from New Jersey Bike Summit sensation, Kendra Arnold of Morristown Pedal Pushers.  If I can make it WalkBikeJersey will be there.  - Andy B.

Bike Morristown is planning a big party for the end of Bike to Work Month after Morristown's monthly ride in May (Friday, May 27), and it is going to be inside the old BMW dealership at 55 Bank Street. We are planning on having the Cinnamon Snail veggie food truck return and several bands and fun stuff going on, but it is gigantic space with 2 showrooms. In the smaller showroom (which is still pretty big), we are going to have room for lots of other bicycling groups to come and push their own agenda. Also any sort of bike-related art or whatnot is welcome to some space to sell their stuff or just show it off.

VTC announces new Safe Routes Scoop

Below is copy of the announcement released earlier today from the folks at the Voorhees Transportation Center regarding the latest edition of the Safe Routes Scoop.  This edition has some excellent information regarding engineering practices that effect all types of bike and pedestrians projects and not just those that directly involve Safe Routes to School projects. As such it's a must read for all bike/ped advocates particularly those just starting out. - Ed.
The latest issue of the Safe Routes Scoop is now available. Read the newsletter at:

The Safe Routes Scoop, a newsletter for the New Jersey Department of Transportation's Safe Routes to School (SRTS) Program, will keep you informed about SRTS news, events, local programs, and available resources. Use this newsletter to promote SRTS and to update your members and partners on projects and opportunities.

Tuesday, March 08, 2011

News you can use - March 8th 2011

Sorry I've been away from the blog for a week.  The weather has warmed up and the lure of the roads traversing New Jersey's beautiful countryside has proven to be too strong for this cooped up cyclist to resist.  Plus, I finally got a job! (yeah!) I've been collecting these articles for nearly a month but they are all important, so pardon if there is a lot of them.  Keep on walkin' and rolin'!
- Andy B.

New Jersey News

Judge throws out confession in hit-run death of 'Idol' hopeful
Asbury Park Press • Monday, March 7th 2011

State gives flat tire to Morristown bike plan
MorristownGreen • Monday, February 21st 2011

Feature: Rage Against Your Machine
Outside Magazine • March, 2011
An excellent, must read piece.

Bike Sharing Coming To Hoboken & Jersey City?
Planetizen • Saturday, February 19th 2011

George Street construction project to reopen in spring
The Daily Targum • Thursday, February 24th 2011I'
I'm planning an in-depth review of this project soon.

Op-Ed: On-Street Protected Bike Facilities Boost Mobility While Lessening Congestion
In Transition Magazine (NJTPA) • Winter, 2011
Being an LCI, can you find the sentence in this otherwise great piece that I have a real problem with? (hint - It's toward the end)


Friday, March 04, 2011

Evesham Resident Wants Sidewalks - Gets Results

Full article in the Burlington County Times (

Evesham resident Jonathan Allen speaks out about lack of sidewalks along Elmwood Road near the Inglis Gardens at Evesham, an independent living facility for adults living with disabilities.

Allen one of about a dozen residents at the facility who walks along Elmwood brought his concerns to the Evesham Township Council on Tuesday and won support:

By Wednesday, Mayor Randy Brown said they’ve already begun work on a plan to expand the sidewalks in the area from Inglis Gardens to Route 70 on both sides of the road, install ramps that are in compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act at Route 70 and Evesboro-Medford Road intersections.

“We’re going to fill the void from Inglis toward Route 70,” Brown said. “We’re hoping to get the sidewalks in within 60 to 90 days.”

Kudos to Jonathan for being a champion for local pedestrian issues and to the Evesham Township Council for moving one step closer towards complete streets in their community.

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