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Posts tagged "bicycle boulevards"

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Portland’s Bike Boulevards Become Neighborhood Greenways

Transportation planners in Portland, Oregon are taking their famous bicycle boulevards to the next level. By adding more routes and stepping up the traffic calming treatments, the city is not only making these streets more attractive and usable for cyclists, but also for pedestrians, runners, children, and anyone else who gets around under their own power.

These next-generation facilities have been christened “Neighborhood Greenways,” and by 2015, over 80 percent of all Portlanders will live within half a mile of one. The city is counting on these re-engineered streets to reach its goal of increasing bicycle mode share from eight percent to 25 percent by 2030.

Just about anybody who’s biked one of these routes can testify to the safety and peace you experience. You’ll see scores of families and children riding to school with regularity. At any time of day, there’s a constant buzz of activity, and during rush hours you’ll see many more bikes than cars. As Portland Mayor Sam Adams points out, “They’re on a quiet street, where that bike boulevard is prioritized for the bike, not the car.”

On a final fun note, one day Portland may also be able to lay claim to being the birthplace of the “sharrow flower.” What’s that? You’ll just have to take watch this Streetfilm and find out.

StreetFilms
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Bicycle Boulevards for NYC

We’ve seen lots of new, innovative bikeway designs appear on New York City streets over the past few years. But, there’s one very promising concept we haven’t seen – bicycle boulevards. Bicycle boulevard design uses a variety of techniques to create low-traffic, low-speed streets where cyclists mix comfortably with cars. They’re very popular in Portland and Berkeley, two cities with high bicycle mode-share. Here in New York, though, they don’t seem to be part of the playbook yet. In this Streetfilm we ask: Why not?

We spoke to Mia Birk, who helped introduce bicycle boulevards to Portland. She’s also the co-author of a new guidebook to bike boulevard design. Here we explore some of the concepts in the guidebook and show how they might be applied to New York. Outside Manhattan, especially, important cycling routes could benefit from the bicycle boulevard treatment.

StreetFilms
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Berkeley Bike Boulevards

In Berkeley, Calif. a citywide network of bicycle priority streets called Bicycle Boulevards allow cyclists to navigate safely. They are marked by smart traffic management, bountiful traffic calming, and the aura of livability and putting people first, cars second. Among their most unique trademarks are the purple signage and street stencils larger than a car!

In this trip to Berkeley, StreetFilms' Clarence Eckerson Jr. talks to advocates and users of the boulevards about their history and benefits.

 

Bike Blvd Sign

StreetFilms
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Portland, Ore. – Bicycle Boulevards

Bicycle Boulevards in Portland are a thing of beauty, safety, and tranquility. They are also wonderful streets to live on. Mia Birk, former manager of City of Portland's Bicycle Program (1993-99), and Mark Lear of the Portland Office of Transportation explain a few of the many strategies employed to keep thru traffic off the boulevards and to make the riders using them safe.