Monday, October 28, 2013

Meeting About Broadway Protected Bike Lanes

photo courtesy of Chicago Dept of Transportation
From Ald. Cappleman's newsletter last week:

Protected Bike Lanes Coming Soon!  Are you a business owner or resident that frequently travels on Broadway? This new type of bike lane is planned for Broadway between Montrose and Ainslie. Representatives from CDOT will be in the ward office to answer any questions from residents and business owners on Wednesday, October 30 from 5-7 p.m., 4544 N. Broadway. The project will redesign the roadway to ensure all roadway users - pedestrians, transit users, bicyclists, and motorists - can travel safely along and across the street, regardless of age or ability.


  1. If only Broadway wasn't so narrow between Halsted and Montrose, we could have a dedicated bike lane from Uptown almost all the way to downtown. I've ridden my bike to the Halsted Home Depot a bunch, and the most harrowing part is when Broadway turns off Halsted for that one block I'm on it til Irving Park.

  2. Broadway south of Montrose desperately needs to be totally reconstructed--the potholes have potholes. And it has to be one of the worst stretches of street for traffic conflicts--dangerous for bicyclists at any time, lots of pedestrians, CTA buses that won't pull over at bus stops, and double-parked cars. One of the best ways to solve all the problems would be to slightly narrow the sidewalks in order to widen the street enough to put in bike lanes with a total reconstruction--and also move the CTA bus stops to the far side of the intersections and put in left turn lanes at W. Sheridan, Buena, and Irving Park.

    It's a nice dream, at least.

  3. These bike riders seem like they want to be treated as automobiles yet fail to follow the IL "rules of the road". I see them weaving in & out of traffic, blowing red lights, ect... They can't have it both ways.

  4. Bicyclists don't "want" to be treated like automobiles, that's what the law says about them. I agree with you that bicyclists should follow the rules, but so should autos. That means not dooring a passing cyclist, not cutting off a bicyclist by taking a right in front of a bicyclist going straight, not using a bicycle lane as a loading zone (I'm looking at you cabs, double parkers, beer trucks, & UPS/FedEx trucks), and not crowding a bicyclist riding on the street. Some cyclists ignore the rules, I agree. They frustrate me too, even when I'm on my bike. However, have you ever (ever) heard of a car driver killed by someone driving a bicycle? The ones in danger in this interaction are bicycles, not car drivers.

  5. Then those that own bikes should also help pay for these roads. The licensing idea is GENUIS!

  6. I'm all for more bike lanes. However, I do not like the bike lanes behind the cars. I think as a driver, it’s very hard to see the bicyclists behind a large parked SUV or a parked truck. And by creating a "protected" bike lane, bikers probably will ride faster.

    Also, with the two bike lanes, two parking lanes and then two driving lanes, how are trucks supposed to make deliveries? Sorry that 91b5... does not like trucks using bike lanes as loading zones, but in reality in some places there is no other place a delivery can be made. So the next time you need anything, remember most of it gets delivered to the store or business in a truck.

    What is the answer if trucks must stop and deliver from a traffic lane? Backed up traffic and dangerous passing into incoming lanes? That's not good.

    Also, it would be nice if bicyclists were required to:
    1) Wear some kind of vest or have something colorful on their backpacks.
    2) Wear a helmet
    3) Have lights and reflectors for night time riding
    4) Not ride the wrong way on one way streets and boulevards.
    5) Stop for traffic lights and stop signs.

    Bike riders need to be full participants in their safety too.

  7. The only people putting bikes in danger are themselves. Once they start respecting the traffic laws then I will support further bike infrastructure. In the meantime the money should be allocated to education on how to safely use the shared road.

    We need major North / South streets on the North Side with two driving lanes in each direction so we have some alternatives to Lakeshore Drive.

    Also I believe we should allocate street space as a percentage of the people who use it. If bikes are 5% of the traffic you can have 5% of the space dedicated to your exclusive use. Once we get to a point where Bike make up 25% of the traffic in that area then I would support dedicated space; along with a strong education program and police enforcement of the traffic laws for those using bikes.

  8. On the North side we need major North South Street with two traffic lanes in each direction to keep traffic moving. Broadway is a good alternative to Lake Shore Drive. If they reduce it to one lane in each direction it will be nothing but gridlock for the benefit of few.

    I do not support further bike infrastructure in the city until bike users start respecting the traffic laws everyone else seems to follow. I am not talking about a couple bad apples I am talking about the majority. I think this money should be reallocated to educational programs for bike riders to share the road safely.

    I think a better solution is to allocate road space based on the percentage of traffic using that roadway. If 5% of the traffic is bicycles and they should have up to 5% of the space dedicated for their exclusive use. Once that reached say 25% then we should look at protected bike lanes as the demand now dictates that this is a good use of the little space we have.

  9. We'll never get more people on bikes until it's safer, so waiting until there are more cyclists before we make infrastructure changes doesn't make sense.

    The Bike Tax is a horrible idea, and if you actually read through the proposal the alderman made, you will realize it's laughable. There is no money to create that program, and the amount of money it would cost to function would far outweigh the amount it would bring in.

    Maybe we should focus on that cable tax. Encourage people to get off their couch and onto a bike?