News

Bike projects expand, evolve in Palo Alto

While speeding ahead on some projects, city takes new direction on others

From Homer Avenue in the north to Charleston Road in the south, Palo Alto's elaborate system of bike boulevards continues to morph and expand, at times in ways not previously foreseen.

New bike paths were recently created near Palo Alto and Gunn high schools -- at Embarcadero Road and Georgia Avenue, respectively -- as part of a collaboration between the city and the Palo Alto Unified School District. And ambitious new "concept plans" were recently approved for popular bike routes such as Park Boulevard, Maybell Avenue, Churchill Avenue and Arastradero Road. In just about every quarter of the city, green lanes, "sharrow" markings and new traffic circles are the order of the day.

Yet as the city furiously pedals ahead with implementing its ambitious 2012 bicycle master plan, officials are also reconsidering several high-profile improvements. In his update to the City Council on Monday night, Chief Transportation Official Joshuah Mello acknowledged that "some of the planning efforts have moved more smoothly than others" and that a few projects faced "assorted challenges."

"We're recommending rethinking some of those projects as we move forward," Mello said.

Among the projects now being rethought is a proposal to extend the nation's first "bike boulevard" on Bryant Street further north, toward Lytton Avenue. This proposal, which has faced opposition, is now being revised as residents voice concerns about hazardous traffic conditions, changes to on-street parking and expressed distaste for bright green lanes running through Bryant's quieter residential sections.

Another downtown project that is now heading into a new direction is the proposal to create an "enhanced bikeway" on Homer and Channing avenues, between the Homer tunnel and the eastern section of downtown. The dramatic proposal would turn the right lane on both Homer and Channing into right-turn only lanes at intersections, exempting bicycles. This, according to planning staff, would create a "semi-dedicated east-west bikeway from the tunnel at Alma Street to Guinda Street."

Yet despite the magnitude of the changes, staff has not received much input from residents and property owners. Now, city officials are looking to explore other – less dramatic – proposals to make it easier for bicyclists to get around downtown.

"We're proposing some pretty significant changes," Senior Transportation Planner Sarah Syed said of the Homer Street concept. "Before we move forward with this type of plan, we'd like to look at some less drastic concepts that still meet the project goals.

"We want to focus more on the issue of connectivity between the Homer tunnel and downtown, really facilitating the north-south movements that are needed in the downtown area for cyclists."

At the same time, transportation planners are still planning to move forward with a host of other projects, including speed humps and shared-lane markings on Greer Road and widened bike lanes on Fabian Way, which would be transformed from four lanes to three lanes to support a new two-way left turn. Staff is also considering a slew of traffic-calming measures for the city's most heavily traveled route, along Park Avenue. Though the details are yet to be hashed out, staff is recommending exploring a physical separation between driving and bike lanes on Park "due to the heavy traffic and large number of turning conflicts in the vicinity of Page Mill Road."

As the planning process for the bike projects advances, staff is also rethinking the ways in which it is engaging the public. One method that is coming into vogue now is what's known as "tactical urbanism" – the quick implementation of a project on a temporary basis to solicit immediate feedback.

Mello said staff is considering bringing such tactics to Palo Alto streets, particularly as the city moves ahead with changes downtown.

"It's hard to ignore, you get valuable feedback and you get feedback in real time," Mello said, in reference to the method.

City Manager James Keene said tactical urbanism allows cities to "try something and, if it doesn't work out, move away from it."

"Rather than having to go out with a full-blown process, (it's) to test things out in a short period of time and see what happens," Keene added.

Council members enthusiastically supported staff's work and lauded all the recent progress on the various bike projects. They also offered their own suggestions and posed several broad questions about the bike improvements. One question that emerged: Is the city over-sharrowing?

Councilwoman Liz Kniss said some bicyclists have indicated to her that they don't feel comfortable with all the new sharrows road markings that encourage cars to share the road with bikers. In response, Mello acknowledged that one of the takeaways for staff from the planning process is that the city "needs to be more deliberative about where we use sharrows." The plan, he said, is to restrict them to the most heavily used areas.

"Using them on every corridor doesn't make sense," Mello said. "There's aesthetic issues around that. Also, people would start to ignore them and they would blend into the background. I think we have to be more strategic about where to use sharrows going forward."

Councilman Tom DuBois suggested that the city focus bike improvements on streets that run parallel to the city's main arterials and avoid removing driving lanes from these prominent streets.

"We need parallel routes for Oregon and Embarcadero and University," DuBois said. "We do hear about it when cars start cutting through on local streets. I think that's what we want to avoid."

Councilman Greg Scharff concurred and said that riding a bike on streets like Alma, Middlefield Road and El Camino is "not fun" and that the city should, where possible, keep the cars and the bikes separated.

"We should as much as possible try to separate the cars from the bikes," Scharff said. "We want to keep our arterials for the cars."

Comments

32 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 28, 2015 at 12:08 am

We are glad that the city is finally trying to fix those important safety gaps in the city's bicycle route network. Bicyclists, especially children heading to school, need safe routes across the Caltrain tracks and also routes from the northern and southern parts of the city where the existing bicycle boulevards fail. Most direct routes through the city (such as Oregon and Alma and El Camino and even Middlefield) are unsafe for bicyclists because of high-speed car traffic and inadequate bike lanes, but parallel and equally direct bicycle-safe routes are certainly possible if the city is serious about this form of low-impact transportation.

The city's bicycle route network must be safe and direct and easy to understand without forcing the users to stop and study maps at every intersection. Convoluted or unsafe bicycle routes encourage people to drive instead, causing more congestion and pollution and parking problems in our city.


31 people like this
Posted by Douglas Moran
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 28, 2015 at 2:08 am

Douglas Moran is a registered user.

On "Tactical Urbanism": I attended the talk co-sponsored by City Hall and Palo Alto Forward (2015-04-07) and I can understand its appeal to various groups.

It encourages individuals or small groups to make changes that they want without notification, consultation or even consideration of what other members of the community want and how those changes will affect them.

But it is even worse than encouraging the arrogant and entitled to impose themselves on others, it blesses willful ignorance. One of the "positive" examples given in the talk was that of an individual going out at night and changing the markings on an intersection. That individual had no knowledge of traffic engineering or traffic safety, the change was simply something that felt right to him.

It would seem to be a huge liability problem for the City to encourage anyone with a spray can and few free hours after dark to think of themselves as traffic engineers.


25 people like this
Posted by Support Bike Network
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 28, 2015 at 6:48 am

The Planning and Transportation team has been working on a collaborative approach to address traffic issues. The fruit of this improvement can be seen most clearly with the morning commute as hundreds bike to school and work. Bravo!

The changes are exciting and encourage so many to adopt a healthier life style. Bikes often pass cars stuck in traffic. It really isn't that much faster to get around town in a car compared to taking your bike.

I applaud the efforts by the City to continue making it safer for all modes - car, pedestrians and cyclists - to get to their destination. It is fantastic that Palo Alto has focused on this balance to keep our neighborhoods safe for families to bike and walk.

I look forward to all the improvements proposed and how they continue to evolve for a balanced traffic plan.


17 people like this
Posted by Palo Verde
a resident of Palo Verde
on Oct 28, 2015 at 7:21 am

We need some better east/west routes for bikes.

I drove along Loma Verde one foggy morning this week and discovered swarms of bike riders on their way to school. This was before 8.00 am so not from elementary school, more likely secondary school. In the fog these bikes swarmed way outside the bike lanes and most paid very little attention to the vehicles who were doing their best to give them their space. A cop car was hiding near El Carmelo school.

I heard of nothing untoward, traffic was moving at the speed of bikes, but I felt it was a very unsafe situation. Loma Verde is a busy road and probably not the ideal bike route.

Can something be done here?


20 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 28, 2015 at 8:42 am

We agree that the city needs better east-west bicycle routes. For years, the city has been talking about creating a family-safe direct east-west bicycle route all the way from the baylands to Arastradero Park. This gives bicyclists safe passage around the barriers of Hwy 101, Alma Street and the Caltrain tracks, El Camino, Foothill Expy, and I-280.

The new bike lanes along Charleston and Arastradero are nice for kids heading to Gunn, but the bike lanes are too narrow for the volume of traffic and the street is too far south for most city residents. We need an east-west bike route through the center of the city, hopefully including on of the Caltrain stations.


62 people like this
Posted by Derp
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Oct 28, 2015 at 8:46 am

I'm an avid cyclist, and I love Palo Alto for its 'bikeability.' However, the cries of 'think of the children' get a little ridiculous and we seem to make infrastructure decisions based on the emotions of loud and overprotective parents rather than statistical evidence.

Palo Verde, I too have seen the 'swarms of bike riders' going to school in the morning, clustering and swerving outside of the lanes. What if instead of ludicrous 'road diets' that turn available bandwidth for cars into pointlessly forbidden empty middle lanes... what if we just taught our kids to bike responsibly instead?

Last night at 6pm, Arastradero was 100% packed with cars between El Camino and Foothill... I know, maybe we should remove another lane! Let's take a 4-lane main artery road that in any other city would be 35mph, and make it a 2-lane road at 25mph. We should make driving home as inconvenient as possible for Palo Altans, because it's everyone else's job to take responsibility for our children... except their's.

It's going to get even more fun with El Camino loses 2 lanes in an attempt to force people to use the crappy VTA bus system (I think they should do a trial run for a month to generate public feedback so everyone can see how unusable El Camino will become when rush hour traffic is increased by 33% before it's forced upon them).

It's nice that we care about the children, but can anyone produce some evidence that these 'traffic calming measures' and 'road diets' directly cause a decrease in accidents and injuries? Has anybody actually seen that data? I've looked and I haven't been able to find it.


15 people like this
Posted by Teacher
a resident of Woodland Ave. area (East Palo Alto)
on Oct 28, 2015 at 12:27 pm

San Antonio is a terrible overcrossing of 101 for both bikes and cars. Bikes coming from east to west are exposed to high speed traffic exiting 101. Eastbound, the road surface is terrible and the room available for bikes comes and goes. Palo Alto and Mountain View should work together to make San Antonio safe for bikes and efficient for cars, especially near the 101 overcrossing.


12 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 28, 2015 at 12:53 pm

@Teacher - we agree that San Antonio @ 101 is a terrible bicycle route, especially during the winter when rush hour is in the dark and there are no streetlights on that part of San Antonio. There is a bike path under the highway just north of San Antonio, but it is closed during the winter and spring every year. Palo Alto says they are going to build a year-round bicycle bridge over Hwy 101, but not for several years. For some reason, bicycle safety projects take a long long time in this city.


70 people like this
Posted by XBiker
a resident of Community Center
on Oct 28, 2015 at 1:04 pm

Too many bike routes in Palo Alto are on too narrow roads, making them very dangerous for bike riders. Charleston, Arastradero, Alma, Embarcadero come to mind. Bryant is narrowed by neighborhood cars parked on the street, forcing bike riders into the middle of the street.

But the biggest problem of all is when two or more bike riders ride abreast in order to talk to each other. This forces all but one into harm's way. There IS a law stating that bike riders MUST ride single file. If cited for riding abreast, the violation goes on one's driving record ( or that of one's parents), increasing insurance rates.
If the danger of death of serious injury doesn't make riders ride single file, maybe being hit in the wallet will.


10 people like this
Posted by Marengo
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 28, 2015 at 1:45 pm

There is no law requiring bikes to ride single file. It says that bikes going slower than the normal speed of traffic at that time and place should stay as far to the right as safe. What is the normal speed of traffic on Bryant during school commute time? Considering that there are more bikes than cars, the normal speed is that of a bike. Also, bike violations don't go on your driving record, or anyone else's.

I agree that parked cars are a hazard to bikes, especially the ones parked in bike lanes like happens all day every day at homes under construction.


17 people like this
Posted by Long-time resident
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 28, 2015 at 2:24 pm

Although I applaud the efforts, and some are long overdue, I feel that many of the plans, especially the leprechaun landing strips, are the signage equivalent of shouting at someone if they don't speak the same language.

Instead of more signage noise, we should be really trying to understand the development impacts and figuring out how to truly deal with the infrastructure problems. For example, El Camino Way is the poster child for a city that has no regard for the impacts of too much development and just barrels ahead to shoehorn everything it wants in way too little space to do it safely.


34 people like this
Posted by Cyclist
a resident of Professorville
on Oct 28, 2015 at 2:30 pm

Embarcadero should have much better facilities for cycling. It remains one of the worst, bar none, roads to cycle either *around* or *on*. Separated lanes for bicycles on both sides would be an excellent way to improve things.


8 people like this
Posted by Long-time resident
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 28, 2015 at 2:39 pm

@Derp,
You only think that about Arastradero because of all the development the last city council approved that violated our city's comprehensive plan.

Arastradero is what's called a "residential arterial". It's supposed to be 25mph. Turning it into something else changes the areas adjacent to it.


27 people like this
Posted by parent
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 28, 2015 at 2:48 pm

We agree with @Long-time resident. 25-mph residential roads should be made safe for bicycling and pedestrians. This includes Middlefield, Embarcadero, and Charleston/Arastradero. If cars want to drive fast, they can stick to major roads like Page Mill, El Camino, Sand Hill, Foothill, 101, 280.


53 people like this
Posted by Johnny
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 28, 2015 at 3:16 pm

I agree 1000 percent with Derp. Everyone must scroll up and read his post.

"Traffic calming" measures fly in the face of reality.

Their decisions are based on a half-baked theory that single-occupant vehicles are somehow bad. Anything that makes it harder for solo drivers is automatically justified. So moral preening supercedes data analysis.

I think they're in denial of the real problem which is overpopulation.


5 people like this
Posted by Donald
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 28, 2015 at 3:36 pm

@Derp, you say you can't find any data. Have you seen the county bike safety report at Web Link ?


70 people like this
Posted by @Marengo
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 28, 2015 at 6:44 pm

I beg to differ: I have been hit while bike riding three times. After the second time, I started riding on the sidewalk when biking on Middlefield, Alma, or Embarcadero for obvious reasons.

One day, I got a citation by PAPD for bike riding in this way on Embarcadero. I informed him that I had been hit and injured by cars twice before, and felt unsafe on certain thoroughfares unless I rode on the sidewalk.

The officer asked me if I had been riding alone or in a group when I was hit. When I told him I was alone the first time, with my husband the second. He then asked if my husband and I rode side by side at the time, to which I responded that we were on a wide street at the time, but yes. The officer informed me, while handing me a citation, that since 2009 it had been illegal to ride side by side, it is a safety violation. He was surprised I wasn't cited for it at the time of the accident ( which was 2009 ).

BTW, my auto insurance did not increase, but my citation for riding on the sidewalk DID go onto driving record.


27 people like this
Posted by cyclistwalkerdriver
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Oct 28, 2015 at 7:33 pm

I try to bike my kids to school as often as possible (also to avoid to 3 gargantuan construction projects with workers walking all over the place like they own the town) However, we are in a cargo bike and my 1 and 4 yr old are always getting rattle because Park Blvd just north of Cal Ave. is so bumpy. They even dug up park of it and poorly repaved it. Whatever you decide DO SOMETHING AND make the bike paths SMOOTHER! Please, and please don't taper the speed humps into the bike lane because it tips cargo bikes. Either continue them to the curb or taper them before the bike lane. There are lots more people with cargo bikes and eve bike trailers who I know would agree.


23 people like this
Posted by Seeking Clarity
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Oct 28, 2015 at 8:12 pm

I am curious about the status of Alma bike path next to the road planned in South Palo Alto. The city came and spoke to us, but never got back to us on when this would occur. Not clear where we are in the process. Is there project management for the Master bicycle plan that can be accessed, so we can track progress? Something like the project updates for Stanford Dish area would be useful. I am left with the feeling that there is scope creep near downtown, but plans for S Palo Alto have not been operationalized. Not wanting to complain if it is not true. Can anybody please provide clarity? Forgive me if I am the only one left wondering...


4 people like this
Posted by @@Marengo
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Oct 28, 2015 at 9:30 pm

@Marengo: If you didn't give the cop your drivers license the ticket couldn't go against it. You dont need a drivers license to ride a bike or use public streets or sidewalks. Cops aren't always right,even about the law, but if you let them do you an injustice then you cant complain.


4 people like this
Posted by Neal
a resident of Community Center
on Oct 28, 2015 at 9:33 pm

There is no state law prohibiting side by side riding. It's possible there are city ordinances requiring single file riding, but that would be very rare. I'm not aware of any PA ordinances that prohibit side by side riding.


41 people like this
Posted by WilliamR
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Oct 28, 2015 at 10:00 pm

I don't have the Vehicle Code section number, but I thought the rule against side-by-side riding applied to roads without a bike lane, that cyclists were supposed to ride as far to the right as possible, and in a single line. If you are in a designated bike lane, there should be no problem.


6 people like this
Posted by PatrickD
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 28, 2015 at 10:55 pm

I'm curious about why motorists make a big deal about cyclists riding side-by-side. A car takes up even more space, and yet we don't require people to purchase cars that are half the width. Any single file riding rule seems to just make cyclists second class users of the road.


8 people like this
Posted by PAUSD Parent
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 29, 2015 at 8:25 am

@DERP - your complaint does not make sense.

Do you really believe that the stretch between Arastadero between El Camino and Foothill is clogged because of thee traffic calming measures? Do you drive in other parts of the City or maybe even try to go to another part of the Bay Area on 101 or 280?

The traffic calming measures do not create root cause of traffic congestion. Our booming business environment is causing it. Using traffic calming as an excuse is not responsible. Creating freeways through our neighborhoods by schools is not an answer.

The City is working on additional engineering changes that will help ease congestion at the light at Foothill and Arastadero. The City has worked to make our streets safer for bike riding that has removed hundreds of cars from this route.

If you drive on Arastadero at peak times then you should be thanking the City for its great work to make this route safer and to get more people to use alternative methods to get to their destination.

To all the people who think bike riders should ride safer then you should email Max McGee and ask for more bike education at school. And encourage your neighbors to take advantage of the bike education provide by the City or Stanford.

I support the Traffic Calming measures and bike plan that the city is developing in a collaborative way. Changes do come very slowly but it is going in the right direction. Keep it up.




48 people like this
Posted by craziness
a resident of Mountain View
on Oct 29, 2015 at 9:54 am

@Patrick. Are you serious? Honestly, you are not helping garner support for cyclists with that statement. No one should be riding double in narrow lanes that cause cyclists to impede the auto lane. Cyclists aren't 2nd class but they certainly are the minority....are you saying you should be able to take more room just because you want to chat on the road even though you're impeding the flow of many more cars?

Our roads were built for the specific purpose of transporting automobiles both faster and greater distances. The fact that we're able to create bike lanes alongside these roads is fortunate and helpful but it does not supersede the primary function of the roads and again, that is to move many cars quickly.

You know, having read these forums for several years now it's become so easy to see these "shills" from biking coalitions planting comments, you can see it in quite a few here. There's definitely a very strategic, well-planned effort for a very small minority to try to project their wishes on the community.


11 people like this
Posted by Brian
a resident of Evergreen Park
on Oct 29, 2015 at 10:15 am

I agree with limiting the use of green to signify where bikes belong. It helps to reinforce the message that that that is were bikes "belong". Given most situations that is were I most likely will ride. "Sharrows should be installed on high traffic routes". I can't agree more. How about getting them installed on Alma at least south of Charleston Rd. It takes vastly more time to negotiate the bike routes than bridging the gap south using Alma. Most drivers are considerate but the sharrows might help educate the small portion of the population which believes bikes belong off the roads.

Thumbs up to "tactical urbanism" !


71 people like this
Posted by Deputy's Spouse
a resident of another community
on Oct 29, 2015 at 11:40 am

Check your DMV bicycle manual, folks: no riding bicycles side-by-side unless two bikes ridden as such will fit in the bike lane. Single file in ALL cases otherwise
.
Also, in ALL cases, if you are over 18, you MUST be in possession of your CDL or equivalent form of ID.

Those are the laws. Break them at your own risk.


15 people like this
Posted by Enforcement where it matters most
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Oct 29, 2015 at 11:55 am

Drivers seem to lead the way at breaking laws at their own risk. I wish the police would enforce laws wherever they are broken.
Deputy's spouse, when was the last time your husband wrote a ticket for tailgating? He should do that more often, please let him know. =


11 people like this
Posted by concerned
a resident of Professorville
on Oct 29, 2015 at 12:15 pm

@Deputy's spouse
Thanks for informing people. Folks may not like it (we're social creatures), but at least knowing what the law is is important.

@craziness
FYI, roads were not built for cars, were built originally for wagons and carts, primarily horse-driven.

In terms of paved roads, believe it or not, those started because of bicycles and for bicycles.

In more recent times, yes, roads seem to be designed for cars. That is why we're trying to fix it so that other forms of transport can be used, safely, on these paths again. Or are you suggesting that cyclists should ride through yards? Or that only cars should be used? Should my teen children be forced to drive to their friends? That seems sad.


23 people like this
Posted by Craziness
a resident of Mountain View
on Oct 29, 2015 at 1:45 pm

Don't twist my words or put YOUR words in my post, I said nothing of the sort.

Again, the PRIMARY purpose of our roads today is to transport cars in the most effective way. I'm all for adding functional and safe biking alternatives, we absolutely need more. I am however against cyclists who ride double and create traffic and safety issues.

Riding double on busy roads is just plain stupid. And selfish. But it just ties into the whole entitlement mentality that is prevalent anymore.


32 people like this
Posted by Crescent Park Dad
a resident of Crescent Park
on Oct 29, 2015 at 2:19 pm

re: Embarcadero. The last thing anyone should do is ride their bike on Embarcadero. Riding on the sidewalks is allowed and is the safest route.

Taking away a traffic lane in each direction is an unrealistic tactic --- the traffic on Embarcadero during commute hours is already bumper to bumper (volume). Taking away a lane would cause cut-through traffic on side streets. Keep the cars on Embarcadero and ride our bikes on other streets instead.


2 people like this
Posted by Anony Mouse
a resident of Green Acres
on Oct 29, 2015 at 2:48 pm

For the punters on the issue of two abreast bicycle riding issue, this might be interesting:

Web Link


10 people like this
Posted by Craziness
a resident of Mountain View
on Oct 29, 2015 at 5:21 pm

Interestingly enough I'm not arguing the legality, just staying the stupidity. Legal doesn't make smart, let alone common sense


5 people like this
Posted by Donald
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 29, 2015 at 5:32 pm

@Deputy's Spouse, I checked the DMV Driver Handbook as you suggested. Note that this is NOT the actual law, but a phrasing of it that is supposed to make it more understandable by the general public. From Web Link I see that it says bicyclists:
Should ride single file on a busy or narrow street.
...
Should carry identification.

These say "Should" not "Shall" or "Must". That means that it is strongly suggested, but not required by law. The identification you carry need not be a driver's license. You do NOT need a driver's license to ride a bike.


36 people like this
Posted by Swerve
a resident of Community Center
on Oct 30, 2015 at 8:54 am

We have a wonderful network of bike friendly streets in Palo Alto. It's a joy to traverse the City by bike and car.

Yet,there is always that dingbat who insists on riding thier bike south on Alma street where the lanes are narrow, there is NO bike lane, and the cars are thick.

Could this be natural selection at play?


22 people like this
Posted by PAmoderate
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 30, 2015 at 10:46 am

PAmoderate is a registered user.

I'm still waiting for bicyclists that can read. There are clear signs that say that they should WALK BIKES while in the Cal Ave underpass, but I don't know how many times I've been passed by a fast riding cyclists trying to make sure they can ride up the incline without dismounting.

So, if they can't even read a sign, how can we expect them to read the DMV Driver Handbook?


6 people like this
Posted by PatrickD
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 30, 2015 at 12:34 pm

@craziness: [Portion removed.] I'm just a person who is sick of driving, and am not connected to any cycling group. The expense and hassle of driving far outweighs the "convenience".

I also merely made an observation that a motorist takes up a far larger portion of the road than a cyclist does. I didn't advocate anywhere in my message that cyclists should ride side-by-side, but I do think there is a lot of irony that motorists are complaining about side-by-side riding when they have side-by-side seating in their car.


32 people like this
Posted by Sad But True
a resident of Monroe Park
on Oct 30, 2015 at 1:04 pm

Give our cyckists a break. Studies have shown that it is impossible to ride a bike and think at the same time.


2 people like this
Posted by Wondering
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 30, 2015 at 1:07 pm

Why would you expect a bicyclist to read the DRIVERS handbook? It is not a BIKERS handbook, it is written for drivers. How many handbooks have you read for a machine that you don't use?


6 people like this
Posted by craziness
a resident of Mountain View
on Oct 30, 2015 at 1:12 pm

[Portion removed.]


13 people like this
Posted by Thank you for giving us a place on the street.
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Oct 30, 2015 at 3:23 pm

I like the direction the city is going with regard to bikes. Thank you!

For the record, I sometimes ride two abreast when I bike with my husband so we can talk while we ride, but we do courteously move to a single file formation when faster moving cars approach.

I like to bike. I'm 56 years old, and my body needs the regular exercise. Movement is good, and it's a convenient way to get around. I also drive. Some trips are not suited to my bike. Certain stores are too far away now. Let's keep retail and other services local so that I can use my bike for errands around town!


4 people like this
Posted by PatrickD
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 30, 2015 at 3:24 pm

[Post removed.]


4 people like this
Posted by Point of Clarification
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Oct 30, 2015 at 3:37 pm

Regarding comments about the department of MOTOR vehicles DRIVER'S handbook,
a question for all the msg board the Einsteins out there:

Are bikes motor vehicles?

You see where you messed up now, right? Clear as day now that someone points it out.
See all of you out there.


17 people like this
Posted by Revelation
a resident of Adobe-Meadow
on Oct 30, 2015 at 3:47 pm

Cyclists not reading the walk your bike signs? Whoa! I think I'm on to something: this seems to be the exact same behavior as aaaaall those drivers who cannot read the speed limit signs. Fools on the roads proclaiming others are fools. Worry about yourself unless you are perfect.
[Portion removed.]


67 people like this
Posted by Look Again
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 30, 2015 at 3:51 pm

The DMV published handbooks strictly of bicycles and motorcycles,
Not just cars and trucks.

They also have handbooks for tractor trailers and other motor vehicles.

Go to the DMV in RWC or Los Gatos and see for yourselves


5 people like this
Posted by Resident
a resident of University South
on Oct 31, 2015 at 8:00 pm

Bike boulevards are a cheap way to help people get to work and get traffic off the road. Thanks for thinking about bikers!


58 people like this
Posted by Look Again
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 31, 2015 at 8:59 pm

Look at the BICYCLE manual, not the driver's manual, for bicycle laws!!!


34 people like this
Posted by Look Again
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 31, 2015 at 9:04 pm

Guess how cops and Immigration used to catch illegal aliens in the old days? They never had a drivers license or state issued ID! It is the law to carry a CDL or California IDcard at all times if you are 18 or over!


6 people like this
Posted by Thanks Palo Alto!
a resident of Gunn High School
on Nov 1, 2015 at 3:34 pm


So excited to see the new bike path put on El Camino Way. It didn't need to be that bright florescent green but I know that fades quickly. Kind of narrow for the cars but hundreds of young bikers travel that road 180 of the 365 days in a year (school days). YEAH!

I'm an avid bike rider and an avid driver. From the comments above, I'm a little worried when people feel the roads have a PRIMARY purpose for cars. I've always thought we share the roads with cars and bikes. If people don't believe this, it makes it more dangerous for me and the kids riding to school. I only ride on roads I think are safe for bikes. Not all roads are (Middlefield, Alma, Page Mill Road and soon to be Arastradero I'm afraid).

As an avid rider (biked across the US and many 100/200 organized rides), I know it is not safe out there. I'm a strong supporter of riding single file and NOT doubling up. Many times when riding with friends, they are disappointed with me because then we can't talk. Tough! I usually include a lunch stop so they feel better and get their socializing done.

That being said, though I love all that Palo Alto is doing for bicyclist, I don't approve the changes made on Arastradero because I am also an avid driver. With more and more traffic on that stretch, I haven't seen the gain. Just a lot of wasted money.

All Commuters Matter! :)


15 people like this
Posted by 55 and back on a bike
a resident of Barron Park
on Nov 2, 2015 at 11:13 am

With the recent changes and realizing I can make some short trips easier and more fun by bike, I just bought my first new bike in over 30 years this weekend. I'm so excited and really looking forward to getting out there. Not today though, haha. Thanks Palo Alto or helping me get back on the bike!!


3 people like this
Posted by Jerry Underdal
a resident of Barron Park
on Nov 3, 2015 at 2:24 pm

Jerry Underdal is a registered user.

@Thanks Palo Alto

"So excited to see the new bike path put on El Camino Way."

I think they've done a beautiful job on this stretch of the route that so many students take to cross El Camino and continue up Maybell towards school . Anyone unfamiliar with suggested "treatments" for improving bicycle safety that come up in staff presentations regarding extensions to the bicycle network should check out El Camino Way.

I look forward to seeing the work continued on the Maybell side.


12 people like this
Posted by Sleeping Giant part 2
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Nov 3, 2015 at 4:28 pm

I disagree. The green is ghastly and dingy after a few weeks, and is a poor substitute for making the hard choices about limiting parking or enlarging the road, undergrounding the utilities to improve the sidewalk, etc. It and the excess of markings says to the people cutting through that the road is not really residential so speed on through.

In your face Maybell neighbors, the City is going to mark your precious neighborhood as nonresidential since you wouldnt let them build it over first. In your eye! (Literally)

How much of that do you suppose is City smoke screen for being unwilling to act in more substantive ways to actually improve safety, such as retaining the orchard and giving some of the back end to PAHC so the overflow parking could happen off street and parking along that whole side could be eliminated? My experience here is that traffic goes faster when the streets are marked because people consider it less residential.


4 people like this
Posted by Future Rider
a resident of Crescent Park
on Nov 3, 2015 at 5:09 pm

The green lanes really help things. Thank you!


Sorry, but further commenting on this topic has been closed.

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