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Thread: Good News on Infrastructure thread

  1. #281
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    I jog through here, and the main issue is the slip lane for turning right, not the middle lane. The issue is that despite the crosswalk and yield sign, drivers don't always stop for pedestrians. The worst offenders are the school bus drivers who go through as a convoy.

    It would have been better to close off the slip lane and make the middle lane a left/right turn lane. That would shorten the crossing and would be much clearer for drivers that they need to yield right of way.

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    Quote Originally Posted by zsionakides View Post
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    I jog through here, and the main issue is the slip lane for turning right, not the middle lane. The issue is that despite the crosswalk and yield sign, drivers don't always stop for pedestrians. The worst offenders are the school bus drivers who go through as a convoy.

    It would have been better to close off the slip lane and make the middle lane a left/right turn lane. That would shorten the crossing and would be much clearer for drivers that they need to yield right of way.
    For the record, the Arlington Bicycle Advisory Committee also recommended elimination of the slip lane, but their recommendation was not heeded by traffic engineering.

  3. #283
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    For the record, the Arlington Bicycle Advisory Committee also recommended elimination of the slip lane, but their recommendation was not heeded by traffic engineering.
    Wait, let me play that back in my head: the traffic engineers concluded that keeping the slip lane was the safer option.
    The traffic engineers concluded that keeping the slip lane was the safer option.
    The traffic engineers concluded that keeping the slip lane was the safer option.
    The traffic engineers...

    (ILLOGICAL. ILLOGICAL. ILLOGICAL ARGUMENT OVERLOADING BRAIN. SHUTTING DOWN NOW)

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    Quote Originally Posted by bobco85 View Post
    Wait, let me play that back in my head: the traffic engineers concluded that keeping the slip lane was the safer option.
    The traffic engineers concluded that keeping the slip lane was the safer option.
    The traffic engineers concluded that keeping the slip lane was the safer option.
    The traffic engineers...

    (ILLOGICAL. ILLOGICAL. ILLOGICAL ARGUMENT OVERLOADING BRAIN. SHUTTING DOWN NOW)
    It's not as cut and dry as it might seem.

    You've got a T intersection where a huge majority of traffic is turning right. You've got a trail crossing parallel to the predominate traffic flow.

    You decide to eliminate the slip lane, but to try to accommodate the huge amount of right-turning traffic you allow right on red.

    Congratulations, you've recreated the Intersection of Doom. Huge amount of right turning traffic which has a green the same time the bikes & peds do + they're looking left the whole time they have a red for an opening so they don't see that the light has turned green and a bike has entered the intersection.

    Alrighty then, let's eliminate the right on red for safety. Now you've got huge backups of traffic from that huge # of people trying to turn right + you've still got major conflict during the green. No problem you say, we'll add a dedicated bike & ped phase where no traffic gets to go in any direction (a Barnes Dance) and lengthen the green time to eliminate the traffic backup. Awesome - you've now lengthened the signal time to the point that a bike or ped who arrives is waiting 2+ minutes for a walk signal, so they give up and take their chances darting across the intersection.

    I was skeptical at first, but I've come round to leaving the slip lane, but making the island big enough that you can actually safely wait on it + improving the sight lines being the smartest option.

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  6. #285
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    Quote Originally Posted by chris_s View Post
    Alrighty then, let's eliminate the right on red for safety. Now you've got huge backups of traffic from that huge # of people trying to turn right
    In the very short term, yes. But wouldn't that huge # of drivers soon realize that they have alternatives to Walter Reed, such as Shirlington Road or even 395, thus canceling out any excessive imbalance in travel time?

    (i.e. Induced demand works both ways...)

  7. #286
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    Quote Originally Posted by Steve O View Post
    For the record, the Arlington Bicycle Advisory Committee also recommended elimination of the slip lane, but their recommendation was not heeded by traffic engineering.
    The traffic engineer's explanation six years ago involved the turning radius of the school buses and DES trucks that are heavy users of that intersection

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    Quote Originally Posted by chris_s View Post
    It's not as cut and dry as it might seem.

    You've got a T intersection where a huge majority of traffic is turning right. You've got a trail crossing parallel to the predominate traffic flow.

    You decide to eliminate the slip lane, but to try to accommodate the huge amount of right-turning traffic you allow right on red.

    Congratulations, you've recreated the Intersection of Doom. Huge amount of right turning traffic which has a green the same time the bikes & peds do + they're looking left the whole time they have a red for an opening so they don't see that the light has turned green and a bike has entered the intersection.

    Alrighty then, let's eliminate the right on red for safety. Now you've got huge backups of traffic from that huge # of people trying to turn right + you've still got major conflict during the green. No problem you say, we'll add a dedicated bike & ped phase where no traffic gets to go in any direction (a Barnes Dance) and lengthen the green time to eliminate the traffic backup. Awesome - you've now lengthened the signal time to the point that a bike or ped who arrives is waiting 2+ minutes for a walk signal, so they give up and take their chances darting across the intersection.

    I was skeptical at first, but I've come round to leaving the slip lane, but making the island big enough that you can actually safely wait on it + improving the sight lines being the smartest option.
    If they really need a steam of drivers turning right, the smartest option would be a dedicated merge lane for the right turners after the turn, so they wouldn't have to be looking left for a merge opportunity instead of looking in front of them as they should be. In this case it might even require taking a lane--but safety was the number one priority, right?

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    Quote Originally Posted by consularrider View Post
    The traffic engineer's explanation six years ago involved the turning radius of the school buses and DES trucks that are heavy users of that intersection
    As someone who both bikes through there occasionally and drives a VERY large piece of equipment through there on a regular basis: ^THIS

    It would be incredibly hard to turn the apparatus that I operate (for the county - our maintenance yard and training academy are down on Taylor Street) right from the middle lane. That being said, I do think that enlarging the island is a huge step in the right direction.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sunyata View Post
    As someone who both bikes through there occasionally and drives a VERY large piece of equipment through there on a regular basis: ^THIS

    It would be incredibly hard to turn the apparatus that I operate (for the county - our maintenance yard and training academy are down on Taylor Street) right from the middle lane. That being said, I do think that enlarging the island is a huge step in the right direction.
    I'd add move the trail crossing of the slip lane back to where the new stripes start...there's now plenty of room for bikes/peds in the closed off lane and drivers shouldn't be looking left yet that further back

    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SM-G930AZ using Tapatalk

  11. #290
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    Keeping the slip lane is not safe because it does not slow drivers down as they approach the crosswalk. That is a current problem that other posters have mentioned. Even if the crossing were moved farther from the intersection with the bigger island, the fundamental issue of drivers not yielding remains.

    The problem of turning radius is one that has seemingly been solved at other intersections throughout the county, so I think we could easily increase the turning radius of that corner as necessary or increase the width of the right lane so that larger vehicles have room to maneuver.

    I think removing the slip lane entirely and converting the now-closed right lane to a right turn only lane that has a dedicated green arrow for the start of the WB Walter Reed Dr green cycle (starts with green left turn arrow) would be the better solution. It doesn't compare to the Intersection of Doom because drivers are not entering the intersection directly from a high speed interstate off-ramp and there aren't 2 right turn lanes.

    Now, if there were a Four Mile Run Expressway, this would be a different story

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