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Thread: Support the Trail Bridge over Lee Highway

  1. #41
    dasgeh's Avatar
    dasgeh is offline Queen of Family Biking & All Things Kidical
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tania View Post
    Yeah. Having to slow down (or -- gasp! -- stop when entering the road way or at the stop signs when cars are present) is a real bother. <--that's sarcasm
    Here's the thing I've learned from biking, driving, walking for however-many years: there are plenty of things people SHOULD do. But until the design-and-culture change, behavior is not going to change. So yes, you should stop at stop signs (or at least slow and wait your turn) and slow when entering a road (though I honestly don't know who's in the right here, because it's not clear in the law). But until we change something, people ain't gonna stop.

    Will the bridge help? Probably. Part of this is culture, and the more safe and comfortable it is to bike, the more "normal" people will bike and normal people will stop (or at least slow) at stop signs, etc. That kind of behavior is self re-enforcing: when the first people to get there stop, the next people to get there probably will, too.

    Plus, I think when people can go fast most of the time, they're more willing to slow down for a short time. But when they're _always_ _having_ _to_ _slow_ _down_ because this stupid corner is too sharp and now I have to go on road and now I have another sharp corner and now I have to stop for a light... I think they're less likely to stop at the stop sign on the straight away in between.

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  3. #42
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    I can see where the neighbors might be questioning the idea of a bridge over 29 as they've had this "temproary" diversion of the sidewalk on the Van Buren bridge over 4MR to deal with for many years*. One wonders why it was ever done and when it will ever be fixed.

    *Note that the streetview image is dated July 2014 and the diversion looks well aged at that point.

  4. #43
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    I support the bridge, but I also think that intersection is way less problematic than other areas along the WOD. Someone is going to die on Great Falls one day.

  5. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Subby View Post
    I support the bridge, but I also think that intersection is way less problematic than other areas along the WOD. Someone is going to die on Great Falls one day.
    Casting my vote for elevating the entire W&OD into one long bridge.


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  6. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judd View Post
    Casting my vote for elevating the entire W&OD into one long bridge.
    Or a tunnel, which would address the pesky snow clearing issue as well.

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  8. #46
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    Quote Originally Posted by dbb View Post
    Or a tunnel, which would address the pesky snow clearing issue as well.
    Plus the pesky sun block issue.

    But it would create a problem for one important class of trail users. http://organictransit.com/

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  10. #47
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    That Benjamin Bannaker section of trail has always seemed unfortunate to me, and I wouldn't mind seeing the trail rerouted as suggested. You come off a fairly fast trail along I-66 and suddenly you're riding through a playground and park. There's the basketball court, the narrow underpass with poor sightlines, people heading to the dog park, the hard right across a wooden bride into an area flanked by a playground with kids' Big Wheels strewn about the place. (Or you go straight and go to the road and through the neighborhood, sure). I always slow down, but I'm sure many don't, and it probably does annoy people, especially during rush hour. There will always be conflicts and it's not a perfect world, but this area seems more imperfect than others.

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  12. #48
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judd View Post
    Casting my vote for elevating the entire W&OD into one long bridge.


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    If we anchor the far end of this bridge somewhere in geostationary orbit we could probably both please subby and get rid of him permanently!

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  14. #49
    KLizotte's Avatar
    KLizotte is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    FYI: I copied and posted the original paragraph in this thread to the cycling listserv in my agency. I've had a bunch of people respond that they were unaware of the initiative and have written an email to the county in support of a bridge. Try to get the word out!

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  16. #50
    mstone is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Judd View Post
    Let me be the first voice for abandoning the idea of a bridge and instead creating a tunnel
    VDOT basically has a no-tunnels policy, mostly AFAICT because of fear of crime. You can ask for one, but my perception is that you'd be wasting whatever time you put into advocacy for it because there's no way it would happen.

    Quote Originally Posted by KLizotte View Post
    Also, taking out the trails in Bannaker Park seems crazy too. That hurts not only cyclists but peds (including those who push strollers and use wheelchairs) from using the park.
    There's an enormous argument over paved vs natural surface trails (with valid points on both sides). Switching to natural surface, especially given the proximity to the water (reducing impermeable surface) is probably a reasonable trade-off for adding more pavement elsewhere in the park.

    Quote Originally Posted by dasgeh View Post
    Honestly, I think they're mostly mad about three spots:
    As cyclists transition off the W&OD to Van Buren, they cross the path of pedestrians walking to the Metro. Pedestrians are oblivious and cyclists don't stop.
    Apparently cyclists never stop at the 4-way stop signs at Van Buren and 19th. Not even Idaho, but waiting-cars-be-damned-I'm-going-through. Neighborhood hates that.
    Where the FMR Trail meets Van Buren, apparently cyclists suddenly appear in the roadway, scaring the bejesus out of drivers. It's not a clear ROW situation.
    It sucks for cyclists, also. (Something to emphasize when talking to the neighborhood: we'd never design it this way if someone asked us.) That turn at FMR and Van Buren is horrible (and isn't helped by the weird things on the road, the non-smooth trail transition, and the other obstacles that require as much attention on the ground as on the surroundings. People are going through the neighborhood because the W&OD segment is even more horrible, not to piss off the residents. VDOT could have moved the sound wall to the other side of the power poles and given the trail more breathing room. The trail could cut the corner on the metro property and run along the east side of the road as a much wider replacement for the existing sidewalk (but that would have cost parking spots!) As it stands you'll never get cyclists to follow the alignment behind the power station because it's just plain uncomfortable to ride there and the chances of reversing the decisions that made it that way seem slim. If there were a way to fly over the metro station and sycamore and connect the two parts of the w&od I think cyclists would take it even with the horrible path behind the power station, but the money for that simply doesn't exist. (We can have that enormous bridge, or every other bike project anyone might want in arlington.)

    As far as removing the trail, the neighborhood wants to close 18th St, which would mean that effectively, the trail would just be moved north, with the new alignment then 18th St. So cyclists would still be on Van Buren and it would only solve the last problem above, though it make it slightly more like cyclists take the "official" W&OD routing up Tuckahoe to the Trail.
    My feeling is that your purple route, combined with the vdot bridge, would tend to pull people to tuckahoe and off van buren, which is probably better for everyone and probably as good as this section can get without bags of cash falling from the sky.
    Last edited by mstone; 01-26-2017 at 05:21 PM.

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