I wanted to share two letters I recently recieved that showcase how tricky it is for municipalities to get bike infrastrutcure right without having proper professional guideance.
From Coral Gables resident:
From Coral Gables Resident,
This has been on my mind for a while and I have not known who to write? As a Coral Gables resident I am appalled at the lack of sentiment towards bicyclists and pedestrians in my city. Coral Gables has one of the greatest collage of 2 lane scenic roadways with large grass swale areas perfect for a picturesque setting and great for slowing cut through traffic however, there is little to no regard for pedestrians and bicyclists.
A current project under development by FDOT for 57th Ave between Calle Ocho and Coral Way (2 major destination streets) does not envision bike lanes or full integration of pedestrian sidewalks and crosswalks on both sides. There is ample room to have a 4’ bike lane, and 6’ sidewalk and still have small size trees or palms. This is the border of Coral Gables and the entrance to our city from all E-W cross streets. Also shame on FDOT for not following their own design manual and mandate to accommodate cyclists, much less federal ADA rules regarding pedestrian access, maximum cross slopes, turn around areas for wheelchairs at all intersecting sidewalks, level surfaces over all driveways, etc. Throw rules and regulations to the wind. The fact that portions of this road are historic is no reason for not making a safe mode of transportation for all users. I’m not suggesting removing trees, adding lanes, or otherwise degrading the scenic character. If this logic was true historic building would be totally exempt from ADA, building codes, and life safety. Historic designation means the character should not be changed while bringing the facility up to date.
Many street intersection both in neighborhoods and on thoroughfares do not include basic ADA access from the sidewalk to the roadway and across intersections. It was standard in the past all over Miami-Dade County to curve sidewalks around the blocks never meeting the streets. I guess maybe engineers and planners thought people were like Nascar drivers and only walked in circles around one block??? To make matters worse when these intersections are “improved” it usually means adding a 5’ wide strip of concrete facing 45 degrees towards the intersection forcing the disabled into the intersection and once again forgoing the fact that people do not walk like robots and wheelchairs do not make 45 degree and greater angles with sharp intersections. Why can’t these be tapered or flared to allow easy movement from one direction to another and offer proper alignment with the crosswalks that are non-existent but fictitious.
Please write your Commissioners below, FDOT and Miami-Dade County and demand that your tax dollars upgrade existing infrastructure to allow 2010 standards. Also on this point urge all city’s Public Works Departments, Miami-Dade County and FDOT to adopt the NEW 2009 MUTCD manual of traffic control standards. This is imperative to allow new bicycle sharrows, new signage and ADA requirements to become mandatory for all projects.
Coral Gables Commissioners:
Don Slesnick- mayor firstname.lastname@example.org
Bill Kerdyk, Jr.- email@example.com
Maria Anderson- firstname.lastname@example.org
Chip Whithers- email@example.com
Ralph Cabrera- firstname.lastname@example.org
FDOT District 6:
Gus Pego- email@example.com
Miami-Dade County Bike + Pedestrian Coordinator:
David Henderson- firstname.lastname@example.org
This came to me from TM reader Kurt Kaminer :
Rydel of Miami Bike Scene suggested I forward you the following report I compiled, regarding Coral Gables outrageous bicycle lanes added to their recent Segovia St./Coral Way roundabout project, along with a campaign to have these lanes removed in favor of proper sharrows, and door-zone issues removed – not only on the existing roundabout, but on the new one being constructed a block south at Segovia and Biltmore Way.
A full discussion of the problems associated with the striping is available at Bikeforums.net, at present:
I have also cross-posted the report to the MIAfixed.com discussion boards, in addition to the Emerge Miami Critical Mass Meetup board.
A Flickr group is available at the following link: http://www.flickr.com/groups/coralgablesbikelanes/
I hope this report is of interest.
I like that they are considering bikes in their redesign of Biltmore Way and Segovia, but the type of infrastructure being used, as Kurt points out, is inappropriate. Then, along major arteries, no bike infrastructure exists. Considering that they are willing to spend the money on bikes, they should at least listen to the people who are actually using the infrastructure. Please write or call in if you live in the area. (Or let us know if you dont agree with the letters above!)
PS. I called Coral Gables Public Works in the summer last year about this project and received zero response.
PPS. This project is funded with ARRA stimulus dollars.
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