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Thread: Washington Blvd repaving thru Westover

  1. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    Why would you want to attract a broader spectrum of riders on Washington Blvd? It basically parallels the Custis. If you feel uncomfortable on Wash Blvd, take the trail.

    The street is too narrow to carve out a two-way cycle track.

    The problem for higher speed riders is that once you carve out cycletracks or PBLs, you make the regular travel lanes narrower and more difficult to ride in/with traffic. The speed limit on Washington Blvd is 30 mph. I ride this road every day. Do not do this.

    (If they really want something to fix, they should change the lane configuration at the George Mason intersection and have dedicated left turn lanes. Now you have through traffic using the intersection trying to pass other through traffic on the right.)

    I'm probably going to regret this, but if pedestrians are crossing the street here frequently, shouldn't the speed limit be 25 mph? And the lanes narrowed to discourage driving faster? A street where experienced riders are uncomfortable taking the lane for a few blocks strikes me as inherently unfriendly to pedestrians and not ideal for what people say this place is. Old Town folks may be pretentious and a lot of them hate bikes but they are mostly on board with being pedestrian friendly. There, I think I've expressed what bothers me without using sarcasm subject to misunderstanding.
    Last edited by lordofthemark; 03-01-2019 at 05:48 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by sjclaeys View Post
    A beer garden, hardware store that has everything ...
    Haha, one of my family sayings is "If Ayers doesn't have it, you don't really need it." (Ayers is the above-mentioned hardware store.)

    As an avid cyclist and cycle commuter, I have to say ... I hope they're not going to sacrifice parking spaces in Westover for cycle paths of any kind. Parking is already scarce. And cyclists commuting through Westover are even scarcer. Not because of any lack of bike paths, but because no one commutes on Washington Blvd. If you want to commute, you commute on the W&OD or Custis, where you're less likely to get killed. If Westover is your destination, then it's easy enough to get there on back roads coming from the bike paths or through the neighborhoods.

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  5. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    For that matter, why allow cars on Washington Blvd.? It basically parallels Lee Highway.
    Maybe the Custis is not where these people want to go. Like you--"I ride this road every day."--I suspect there are others who would also ride this road every day if it were more comfortable for them. Presumably you would prefer that only experienced, comfortable riders like yourself should have access to using this street on their bike. I think that Isabella should be able to ride here to get to the library or Toby's or wherever she wants to go.

    I'm not trying to "attract a broader spectrum of riders." I'm wanting to create a comprehensive, safe, comfortable bike riding infrastructure essentially everywhere. Yes, this seems to be an impossible aspirational goal, but it's what we have to hold up. Otherwise all we have is a bunch of fixie-riding economists.
    Why is it necessary or even desirable to make comprehensive, safe and comfortable bike infrastructure everywhere for folks like Isabella and simultaneously eliminate what I consider appropriate and desirable riding conditions for my type of riding? Presumably you would prefer that only inexperienced and slow riders like Isabella should have the ability to efficiently ride a bike in Arlington.

  6. #54
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    Quote Originally Posted by lordofthemark View Post
    I'm probably going to regret this, but if pedestrians are crossing the street here frequently, shouldn't the speed limit be 25 mph? And the lanes narrowed to discourage driving faster? A street where experienced riders are uncomfortable taking the lane for a few blocks strikes me as inherently unfriendly to pedestrians and not ideal for what people say this place is. Old Town folks may be pretentious and a lot of them hate bikes but they are mostly on board with being pedestrian friendly. There, I think I've expressed what bothers me without using sarcasm subject to misunderstanding.
    The speed limit on all of Washington Blvd is 30 mph and is set by VDOT as a primary state highway. The limit should be lowered at least through Westover proper, but getting VDOT to do this for a few blocks seems bureaucratically difficult. Outside of Westover, Washington Blvd is a two lane road going through a purely residential neighborhood without "too much" pedestrian traffic across.

    I don't think there are too many experienced riders that are uncomfortable taking the lane through Westover. The road width through Westover is wider than the rest of Wash Blvd and really taking the lane generally isn't necessary.

  7. #55
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    Quote Originally Posted by NickBull View Post

    As an avid cyclist and cycle commuter, I have to say ... I hope they're not going to sacrifice parking spaces in Westover for cycle paths of any kind. Parking is already scarce. And cyclists commuting through Westover are even scarcer. Not because of any lack of bike paths, but because no one commutes on Washington Blvd. If you want to commute, you commute on the W&OD or Custis, where you're less likely to get killed. If Westover is your destination, then it's easy enough to get there on back roads coming from the bike paths or through the neighborhoods.
    I literally commute down Washington Blvd. through Westover every day.

    Besides the Custis/WOD being parallel 3 blocks to the south, 16th Street is a fine bike route 2 blocks to the north.

  8. #56
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    Quote Originally Posted by DismalScientist View Post
    Why is it necessary or even desirable to make comprehensive, safe and comfortable bike infrastructure everywhere for folks like Isabella and simultaneously eliminate what I consider appropriate and desirable riding conditions for my type of riding? Presumably you would prefer that only inexperienced and slow riders like Isabella should have the ability to efficiently ride a bike in Arlington.
    That is correct. I don't care about you.

  9. #57
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    1.1 mile to the west of Westover is EFC metro. 1.3 miles to the east is Ballston. Just east of Westover's retail area is the apt complex that was mentioned above. 2 blocks north of Washington Blvd is VHC, where there has been a big dispute about parking among other things, despite proximity to the metro.

    Yet for reasons bureaucratic or otherwise, the speed limit can't be lowered even from 30 to 25. Even people committed to alternative transportation fear the loss of any parking. (IIRC parking there is free - economists at least shouldn't be surprised that a free good is scarce). VDOT, the County, and much of the community view the entire corridor from EFC to Ballston as if A. There was no shortage of housing in the region, esp housing inside the beltway and close to transit) and B. We didn't face a planetary climate crisis. I won't use the word dystopian, but let's just say its "problematic".

    The larger problem is not by any means confined to this nabe or to Arlington. Heaven knows I have complaints about attitudes in Alexandria, particularly in Old Town. But I would note I, who ride more slowly and less confidently than many here, have no problem taking the lane on King in OT or on Mt Vernon in Del Ray. Neither is is the more common biking route - both have better parallels. But both are fundamentally oriented around pedestrians. People walk a few blocks to get to stores.(much of Alexandria is not pedestrian friendly, but at least that's recognized as a problem by City staff, by our more enlightened electeds, and by a growing part of our electorate) This is about something bigger than biking. Its depressing. Half the country thinks global warming is a socialist hoax. The actual socialists, when they first announced a plan based on the urgency of stopping global warming, included in a FAQ their insistence that gas taxes not be increased (they eventually withdrew the FAQ after some shaming over its details)

    Think globally. Act locally. "The task is great, and the stakes are high, and the day is short, and the workers are lazy. Yet you must do your part"
    Last edited by lordofthemark; 03-02-2019 at 02:41 AM.

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  11. #58
    DismalScientist is offline I really need to log off the internet and go for a ride.
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    The lack of parking is just for the support of local businesses ( which own the lots in back and may own the on-street diagonal parking--so no it's not "free") and not for nearby residents. If you eliminate parking, you just drive business to other locations. For God's sake, it is just a one block business district. This is really not an opportunity to save the world.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lordofthemark View Post
    1.1 mile to the west of Westover is EFC metro. 1.3 miles to the east is Ballston. Just east of Westover's retail area is the apt complex that was mentioned above. 2 blocks north of Washington Blvd is VHC, where there has been a big dispute about parking among other things, despite proximity to the metro.
    I'm not sure I get your point - is it that the county should make it more pedestrian and cyclist friendly to get from EFC/Ballston to Westover? Right now, to get between EFC and Westover cyclists have a point-to-point link via W&OD and Ohio street. Pedestrians have sidewalks. There's also the 2A bus. Between Westover and Ballston there's the W&OD/Custis, there sidewalks and again, the 2A bus. I'm with Dismal - I think there are better uses of the government's resources than creating redundant infrastructure on what will always be an unpleasant cycling route. My guess is that given the superior alternatives already available, a Washington Blvd cycletrack/PBL/whatever would see too little use to be worth the investment.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lordofthemark View Post
    My original point was meant to be light (dystopian being obviously absurd) and focused on the complete streets difficulties. I mentioned class only in response to a list of fine retail establishments. I probably shouldn't have. I can edit my remarks if that is desired. Ok? Peace.
    No serious offense taken. Just had to show a little Westapharian pride and defend the nabe. To further lower tensions, I hereby withdraw my proposal to build a wall along the southern border of Arlington.

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