22 Comment

  • My guess is you won’t see these vertical lane markers for very long… in fact just saw a tractor trailer truck run over a bunch, snapping one completely off, at 17th and L St. Not sure how this will allow for loading/unloading on the north side of the street (CVS has nightly deliveries here), not to mention all the parking that it just eliminated. I’m all for giving bikes some (much needed) room on the road, but would seem more appropriate to have the area where the markers are be the bike line!

    • Not clear what you mean. The whole point of the vertical separators is to physically bar cars from passing through or entering the bike lane EXCEPT in the green-striped portions.

      (I had to read the PDF pretty closely to figure it out, though — I don’t think it’s going to be readily apparent to motorists seeing the whole setup for the first time.)

      • I was speaking to the actual functionality of the street. These markers will be obliterated by the trucks that will surely just run them over so that they can load/unload goods to the businesses on the north side of the street (just as I witnessed earlier). Since there are no additional loading zones on the south side, the trucks will wind up blocking the bike lane (despite the paint or markers) or a lane of traffic – saw this last week with a Postal truck at L and Conn. Ave. – which reduces this street to one lane at non-rush.
        I wonder what The Quincy Hotel will do for it’s guest drop-off now? Not a very well thought out or planned reconfiguration at all.

  • Those flexible delineators are designed to take a hit from a vehicle and bounce back, without much, if any, to either.

    • You are half correct… no damage to the truck/car that hit them, but there are now two sheared off marker signs sitting in the bike lane.

  • What a completely stupid idea–and just in time for when almost no one bikes! I drove past it this weekend and there were a couiple of cars driving inthe bike lane. I had no idea where bikes were supposed to be. Of course, the only biker on the road was in the right lane completely ignoring the bike lane. That was the one spot that even I was sure was not the bike lane.

    • Speak for yourself. I bike to my office on L Street everyday and this is a definite improvement over a road with no space for bikes.

      • I’ll just assume you’re trolling….”and just in time for when almost no one bikes.” You do know ridership has soared over the last few years right? Maybe you mean no one rides in the winter? Wrong again. It won’t see the same use it will in the spring-fall, but it will see plenty of use! I’m seeing more and more people on the track everyday from my office window. More please!

        • Not trolling. As a pedestrian I am frustrated with drivers and bikers. And our bike lane strategy makes no sense to me. Especially given the fact that bikers are not required to use them on the roads where they are available.

          But I did mean just in time for winter.

          • i bike to work year around, unless there is more than 2″ of snow/ice on the ground. I’ll be using this and many of the other bike lanes!

          • The L St bike lane is perfectly located for pretty much anyone who works downtown.

  • This is an excellent location for such a lane. Originally it was planned for I Street which is too much of a gridlock now. L Street has plenty of width, and before the cars drove way over 25 here.

  • alissaaa

    I think that they made the lanes too wide in the places that aren’t for left turn lanes. (Unless they are planning on marking the lanes for biking in both directions.)

    My office is on L between 17th and 16th and delivery cars are still pulling into the bike lane (before where the left hand turn lane is supposed to begin) because the lane is wide enough for a car at that point and the barriers are far enough apart that they can get through them.

    As someone who bikes to work, however, I’m really happy that they added this bike line–hopefully they can work the kinks out.

  • All weekend this was full of parked cars. There needs to be some signage as the drivers get used to this new setup. I think this is a wonderful addition. As an avid user of the 15th street bikelanes, this makes me much more confident in going east-west.

  • I was biking here last week. It was totally confusing for both me and the cars. Also saw cars ‘turning’ through the vertical barriers.

    • Lost a sentence in my original post: So I hope they both improve the signage and make it intuitively clearer.

      I’ve heard that the whole lanes aren’t painted because the paint is expensive. I wish they would paint more, though. I am not sure that two white lines followed by green cross lines reads as “mixing area” to most drivers.

      Elsewhere, I have seen more drivers fail to merge into the bike lane before making their right turn since the green lines were added than I used to see before them. If it was solid green verses stripes, I think it would be intuitively clearer.

  • I still don’t get it. Is it two ways? If so, will there be markings for each way? Are the bikes supposed to go where the car is in the picture? Why didn’t they just do it like 15th Street?

  • Ugh, this is so ridiculous. Just build Amsterdam-style bike lanes with a PHYSICAL separator on the ground (curbs or islands). That way, it’s clear to everyone where bikes should ride and cars should park.

    http://media.tumblr.com/tumblr_l64g3kMRgF1qzyubx.jpg

    http://kerrieandmike.freeservers.com/images/Europe/Amsterdam/Amsterdam-Tues15.jpg

  • Chill out, people. They aren’t done with it yet, but when they are, the discussed problems will be solved.
    1) People will use it. Right now it only goes a few blocks, but when it’s complete, people will definitely use it. I work on L and it’s not easy to get to the 15th St. tracks right now.
    2) There will be clear markings on the pavement that it is just for bicycles. Look at the plan: http://ddot.dc.gov/DC/DDOT/Publication%20Files/On%20Your%20Street/Bicycles%20and%20Pedestrians/Bicycles/Bike%20Lanes/L_St_CycleTrack_Final_2012-08-07.pdf There will be giant bicycle symbols painted on.
    3) This is needed. There is not a single bike lane downtown anywhere west of 15th St. When this is complete, more people will bike, and fewer bikes will compete with cars or ride on sidewalks. All that’s lost is some parking spots that are only in use for part of the day, and people will have to suck it up and park on the next block over or in a garage.
    4) Cars will stop parking in it when they finishing putting up the No Parking signs.

    It’s not functioning properly yet because they haven’t finished installing it. They can’t do it all overnight. Give it another week or two.

    Also, I think the winter timing makes plenty of sense. They can work out the kinks and have people adjust while ridership isn’t at its peak. I assume that’s why Capital Bikeshare rolls out its major expansions in late fall.

    • I happen to ride this way somewhat regularly, so I used it today. The guy-on-bike symbols cannot be painted soon enough! I would never call a bike lane too wide, but cars were using it. The vertical markers need to be more frequent, so that cars cannot get between them. We are a “Roadways for Dummies” city. It’ll take a long time for that to change, but I applaud DC Gummint for finally installing appropriate infrastructure.

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