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Posts tagged "Mike Lydon"

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Jersey City’s Quick Build Bike Network

Last year in Jersey City, NJ we followed some of the meetings, rides, and community outreach around the development of their ambitious Bicycle Master Plan.

A few weeks ago we paid a visit to see how well implementation is going and despite the complications of Covid, the installation of parking protected as well as barrier protected lanes is developing at a rapid pace.

Already then have completed 10 miles of a scheduled 46 miles of protected bike lanes that will allow folks in Jersey City to get where they need to go safely.

This summer saw a 205% increase in bike counts along the Grand Street PBL/ road diet. Also installed are (likely) the first protected intersections in New Jersey.

Their bike lanes also feature stencils of riders with ponytails alternating with the standard "male" glyphs of riders.

One amazing thing to see (that we admit we wished we would have documented more of) is the incredible 5 block stretch along Grove Street, which runs in front of City Hall, which now features a two-way parking protected bike lane on one side and restaurant dining in the street on the other. The street resembles what you might see in some of the best cities in Europe for people. It is so quiet. Jersey City is doing big things!

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Jersey City’s Bike Master Plan: Using Surveys, Rides & Tactical Urbanism to Generate a Connected Network

Let's Ride JC is Jersey City's first bicycle master plan. While multi-faceted, the project's cornerstone is the development of a low-stress, protected bikeway network serving neighborhoods citywide.

Developed in just over a year, and in conjunction with Jersey City's Vision Zero Action Plan, the planning process included workshops, "handlebar survey" rides, and a large-scale demonstration project showcasing the value of protected bike lanes.

The final master plan and companion bikeway design guide will be adopted early this fall, however the City has already begun implementing 9-miles of protected "quick build" bikeways along some of the most dangerous corridors in the city core, making progress against the goal to become one of the best cities for cycling in America.

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Jersey City Experiments with its first Protected Bike Lane

The Bergen Avenue protected bikeway is a temporary facility, implemented with removable materials to demonstrate to Jersey City residents and businesses how protected bike lanes could be implemented in Jersey City. The protected lane is Jersey City's first and is 75% wider than other lanes in Jersey City so that people cycling can travel side-by-side. The lane also welcomes people using scooters, skateboards, and rollerblades.

The 6-block, .4-mile project links Journal Square and McGinley Square and was built to last over the duration of JCAST 2018, the city's three-day, citywide arts festival. Not an isolated project, the demonstration project is part of the engagement process for the Let's Ride JC Bicycle Master Plan, an effort being lead by Street Plans with support from Arterial, Equitable Cities, Streetfilms, and many community groups and city departments who desire safer streets.

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Barcelona’s Superblocks: Change the Grid, Change Your Neighborhood

Two years ago, Barcelona announced it would transform chunks of its street grid to prioritize people over cars. The method: superblocks.

When American planners think of superblocks, they probably think of big parcels that disrupt the pedestrian network and discourage walking. Barcelona's superblocks are different. They only limit motor vehicle movement, which makes walking and biking easier and opens up streets for people to gather.

On Barcelona's superblocks, local access for motor vehicles is still permitted, but through traffic is not. The streets are designed to make drivers feel like they are visitors, with narrow rights-of-way for cars. Almost all car traffic is local residents or people with personal business on the block.

Without dangerous car traffic overrunning the streets, generating noise and pollution, superblocks are full of life. Children can play and explore. Seniors and people with limited mobility can relax and socialize. People -- including young kids -- can feel safe and confident riding bikes.

I visited Barcelona in June, when some of the initial, temporary superblock treatments were being made permanent in a nine-square-block section of the street grid with a lot of public housing in the Poblenou neighborhood. The drone of cars was gone, and you could hear sounds you normally can't in the center of a city. Street life ebbed and flowed through the course of the day and the week.

Barcelona has not installed many superblocks yet. In fact, until recently Poblenou was the only one. A second superblock officially opened in Sant Antoni just days before my arrival, a project tied to the redesign of a public market.

More superblocks are on the way, according to Barcelona officials, with roughly a dozen others in the pipeline. It will be exciting to see this experiment continue to transform Barcelona and show the rest of the world what cities can do when they tame car traffic and put people first.

StreetFilms
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9th Annual Bike JC Ward Tour Draws Nearly 3,000 Riders!

Well over 2,000 people came out on World Bike Day for Jersey City's ninth annual Ward Tour, a 16-mile ride that visits all six wards in the city, according to ride organizer Bike JC.

Big things are afoot in Jersey City. As Mayor Steven Fulop (who rode the whole way) told the crowd, work is now underway on a bike master plan, known as Let's Ride JC, that aims to extend a network of safe, comfortable bikeways throughout the city.

At the finish line, riders got to see a pop-up protected bike lane made out of paint and a few small plants. It's the type of demo project that the Street Plans Collaborative, which is leading development of the bike plans, aims to show a lot more people in the months ahead.

All in all, everyone had a great time riding on the streets of Jersey City and imagining a city that's better for bicycling.

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Transform Your City With Tactical Urbanism

Tired of waiting for local governments to fix dangerous conditions, in many cities everyday citizens are practicing DIY traffic-calming to make streets safer for walking and biking. Some are forming “Departments of Transformation” to show others how to implement low-cost interventions, like traffic cones, to slow drivers down.

Often these installations are quickly removed by local DOTs, but in other cases, cities are embracing what’s come to be known as “tactical urbanism.” Some cities are making citizen-generated improvements permanent, while others are encouraging the movement by sanctioning, and even sponsoring, tactical urbanism projects.

Watch as we check in with people who are making this happen around the world!

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Riverside, CA Tries Out Pedestrian Scramble Intersections

Go Human is a community outreach and advertising campaign with the goals of reducing traffic collisions in Southern California and encouraging people to walk and bike more. Developed by the Southern California Association of Governments, Go Human implements open streets and pop up events throughout the Southern California region.

Recently in Riverside, CA, the Go Human campaign employed Street Plans & Alta Planning to help install temporary tactical urban installations at two intersections and develop and implement a 3-week pilot for a pedestrian scramble on Mission Inn Avenue and Market Street, considered to be the gateway to the city of Riverside. These efforts are a fun way to help educate and inform city residents while gathering feedback both visual (from city engineers) and written (from users) at kiosks set up by Go Human.  The quick feedback in our Streetfilm shows people seem to love the idea!

Over the years, also known as the Barnes Dance and Diagonal Crosswalks, the NYC Council recently passed legislation that would require having the NYC Dept. of Transportation bring 25 such treatments to high-crash, dangerous intersections in the city.  This is great news.

But let me add this: although Pedestrian Scrambles are an effective implementation in very complicated, high volume places, Leading Pedestrian Intervals (LPIs) - where pedestrians get a 5 to 7 second head start on traffic - are also extremely effective and can be done with a flip of the switch.  NYC DOT has installed many of these in my neighborhood in the past few years.

All in all, the more tools to slow cars and tame the streets, the better.

 

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The Rise of Open Streets: 8 Years of Ciclovia Videos on Streetfilms

A few weeks ago we posted our newest video "The Rise of Open Streets,"  a joint production with The Street Plans Collaborative and the Alliance for Biking & Walking.  We're excited to announce that sometime in March there will be a collection of our open streets films available on DVD for communities to use in public showings and presentations. If you need to get your community psyched that should do it.  But if you can't wait, you can always download ANY of our films FREE now directly via Vimeo by using the download button on individual posts.

Streetfilms journey in to the world of ciclovias all began during the Summer of 2007, when Ethan Kent from the Project for Public Spaces wrote an article about his experience riding the ciclovia on a trip. That got me super curious. So a few months later Gil Penalosa, now the Executive Director of 8-80 Cities, gave us a mammoth tour of - well of everything - which led to a series of great Streetfilms from Bogota.  Until last month, Ciclovia was the most popular Streetfilm of all time!

But there have been many more since. Our greatest contributor/freelancer John Hamilton has done phenomenal coverage over the years.  He's done videos in San Jose, San Francisco, Berkeley, and this latest one (above) from Oakland. He shoots the majority of his footage while rollerblading.  Sometimes it gets me jealous how good it looks.

I've been very fortunate to travel the world and experience many in my work with Streetfilms. I think my favorite - and that is really like saying "What is your favorite pizza?", because there is SO much good pizza - was my 2011 trip to Guadalajara.  The energy on the streets was amazing, nearly undescribable.  And I got to see things I hadn't seen in many other open streets events. For example, kids getting free haircuts!

If you'd like to watch more, please do. Here's an easy link to bring them up. And good luck if you are trying to make an event happen in your city!

StreetFilms
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The Rise of Open Streets

Streetfilms has been documenting the open streets movement for over seven years, beginning with our landmark film in 2007 on Bogota's Ciclovia, currently the most viewed Streetfilm of all time.

The next year, Mike Lydon of The Street Plans Collaborative decided to get an open streets event going in Miami, which led to his research for The Open Streets Project, a joint project with the Alliance for Biking & Walking.

Miami wasn't alone. In 2008, there were new open streets events in more than a dozen cities, including San Francisco, Portland and New York. All told, open streets events have increased tenfold since 2006.

"The Rise of Open Streets" examines the open streets movement from myriad perspectives -- how it began, how events are run, how they shape people's perceptions of their streets, and how creating car-free space, even temporarily, benefits people's lives. And it looks not only at big cities like Los Angeles, but smaller ones like Fargo, Berkeley, and Lexington.

We've interviewed some of the most important people in the movement, including former NYC DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan and former Chicago DOT Commissioner Gabe Klein, as well as former Bogota Parks Commissioner Gil Penalosa and Enrique Jacoby, from the Pan American Health Organization.

We were proud to partner with The Street Plans Collaborative and the Alliance for Biking & Walking to produce this film, which we hope will encourage even more open streets events throughout the world. Funding for "The Rise of Open Streets" was graciously provided by the Fund for the Environment & Urban Life.

StreetFilms
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MBA: Traffic Calming

What’s the most effective way to make city streets safer? As Chicago Alderman Mary Ann Smith told Streetfilms, “Signs don’t do the job, even having police officers on the corner does not do the job.” To prevent traffic injuries and deaths, you need to change how the street functions and make it feel slower for drivers. You need traffic calming.

Traffic calming takes many forms and can describe any measure taken to reduce traffic speeds, improve safety, and make using the street a better overall experience. The most effective traffic calming measures are those that influence drivers to “behave in a civilized manner,” as Smith put it.

Changes like curb extensions, neck-downs, and bike lanes are all traffic calmers that save lives by sending the signal for drivers to slow down. In this Streetfilm we highlight some exemplary traffic calming projects from cities across the country.

Streetfilms would like to thank The Fund for the Environment & Urban Life for making this series possible.