PBIC offers new study on countermeasure costs

The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center completed a new study identifying the costs for pedestrian and bicycle safety infrastructure. The paper, "Costs for Pedestrian and Bicycle Infrastructure Improvements: A Resource for Researchers, Engineers, Planners, and the General Public," provides meaningful estimates and cost ranges on 77 pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure projects.

The study is based on the costs from more than 1,700 projects across the nation. That data was used to determine cost estimates and ranges for the types of projects. The report is intended to help researchers, engineers, planners, elected officials and the general public when selecting pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure improvements.

"By making more informed decisions about the costs of pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure treatments, decision-makers will be able to dedicate funds to those treatments secure in the knowledge that these investments are often affordable as well as determine which treatment is the most cost-effective," said Charlie Zegeer, the PBIC's Director and one of the study's authors.

The study was jointly funded by the Federal Highway Administration, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the UNC Highway Safety Research Center.

To view the study, go to http://www.walkinginfo.org/library/details.cfm?id=4876.

The PBIC will supplement the printed report with a webinar in January. Learn more about the webinar at http://www.walkinginfo.org/webinars.


NACTO releases new Urban Street Design Guide

The National Association of City Transportation Officials released its Urban Street Design Guide. The guide is intended to be “A blueprint for designing 21st century streets,” in which city streets serve not only to move traffic, but to provide needed urban public spaces.

The guide, which was released in September 2013, can be purchased from Island Press. Learn more at http://nacto.org/usdg/.


Walk Friendly Communities programs now up to 44 communities

The Walk Friendly Communities program named eight new communities during its sixth round in September 2013.  Asheville, NC, Burlington, VT, Montclair, NJ, and Tallahassee, FL earned Silver-level designations while Atlanta, GA, Bloomington, IN, La Crosse, WI, and Sitka, AK were named Bronze-level communities.

“Receiving this national award is a clear indication that we are a step above the rest,” Tallahassee Mayor John Marks said in a statement. “And, we couldn’t be happier. It is an honor to be recognized for our efforts to create ways for our citizens to move around this beautiful city.”

The Walk Friendly Communities program, which is administered by the PBIC and co-sponsored by FedEx, recognizes communities that have demonstrated a commitment to improving walkability and pedestrian safety. To date, 44 communities have earned Walk Friendly status.

The program is currently accepting applications for its seventh round through the end of December and will begin accepting applications for its eighth round on May 1, 2014. To learn more about the program, go to http://www.walkfriendly.org.


HSRC leading new cycle track research project

The Federal Highway Administration Office of Human Environment's Livability Team recently kicked off a research project focused on the planning and design of cycle tracks. Cycle tracks are bicycle facilities that run alongside a roadway separated from automobile traffic by a physical barrier, such as parked cars, bollards, a landscaped buffer, or a curb. The project is being led by the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center (HSRC), in partnership with Kittelson and Associates, Inc., Sam Schwartz Engineering, and consultants Bob Schneider and Bill Hunter.

A Technical Working Group (TWG) has been formed to actively participate in the study process and met for the first time on November 21, 2013. The TWG includes representatives from cities, State DOTs, and MPOs throughout the US, as well as organizational representatives from the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials, Institute of Transportation Engineers, National Association of City Transportation Officials, and the League of American Bicyclists' Equity Initiative.

This research will include a detailed safety and mode share analysis, while also highlighting cycle track planning and design considerations. The research will benefit FHWA by providing a robust and contemporary assessment of crash data for operational cycle tracks in the US. By evaluating the full range of design options, safety studies, and qualitative input from practitioners, it will also inform the planning, design, and safety outcomes of future cycle tracks. The research project is expected to be completed in Fall 2014.


PBIC and America Walks compile pedestrian yielding laws by state

The PBIC and America Walks completed a comprehensive listing of all pedestrian yield laws in all 50 states. This new resource includes the language of the law, when the law was last amended and whether the state requires motorists to stop or yield to pedestrians.

You can access the listing at: http://www.walkinginfo.org/library/details.cfm?id=4879.


PBIC augments PEDSAFE with pedestrian safety research summary

The PBIC has released a comprehensive review of research on the effects of pedestrian safety countermeasures discussed in PEDSAFE: Pedestrian Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection System.

“Evaluation of Pedestrian-Related Roadway Measures: A Summary of Available Research” offers a review of research performed on the more than 60 countermeasures cited in PEDSAFE. The literature review is intended to serve as a companion to PEDSAFE, which was released in September.

The paper can be viewed at: http://www.walkinginfo.org/library/details.cfm?id=4872.


Featured Case Study: Using Crossing Islands to Improve Pedestrian Safety and Reduce Collisions

Eureka, California

Prepared by Sheila Parrott, City of Eureka Engineering Department

Problem

Improvements were needed to enhance pedestrian safety and reduce collisions at an intersection in Eureka, California.

Background

Myrtle Avenue, Eureka, California

Myrtle Avenue in Eureka, California, is a wide street measuring 70 ft. with three lanes of traffic, two lanes in each direction and one two-way left turn lane and no marked crosswalks. Sixth Street entered Myrtle Avenue at an odd angle, and Myrtle Avenue had a horizontal curve that required motorists to enter traffic quickly and abruptly. Consequently, the intersection of Myrtle and 6th Streets was avoided by pedestrians, cyclists and motorists. Following the realignment of a portion of State Highway 101, which formed part of an adjacent intersection, the nearby intersection of 6th Street and Myrtle Avenue began to exhibit operational deficiencies due to more traffic being rerouted to this intersection. An increase in the number of reported collisions involving bicycles, pedestrians and vehicles at the intersection was noted by City staff, residents, and, ultimately, the local press. As a result, it was deemed the most dangerous intersection in the city.

Solution

As a result of the safety concerns, an intersection improvement project was initiated in cooperation with the California Department of Transportation and the bicycling community to address deficiencies, reduce conflicts, and enhance safety for motorists, pedestrians and cyclists at the intersection. A series of temporary traffic controls, including signage, barricades, and traffic cones, were used to test the prohibition of through vehicle traffic prior to construction. The temporary traffic controls were installed in December 2007 and remained in place until construction began in August 2008. During that time period, no collisions were reported at the intersection.

Myrtle Avenue, Eureka, California

Following the temporary measures, the City of Eureka installed a median island with a pedestrian/bicycle refuge and crosswalk that prohibits vehicular southbound left turns and through movements across Myrtle Avenue. By preventing through vehicle traffic across Myrtle Avenue, the City hoped to better accommodate and encourage bicycle traffic. Two additional islands on each side of Myrtle Avenue at 6th Street channel vehicles into their respective lanes and provide refuge for pedestrians. Additional street lighting and pedestrian-activated LED signs were added for increased pedestrian visibility. A new school facility and multi-family housing on 6th Street brought more pedestrians.

Results

The project at 6th Street and Myrtle Avenue addresses operational deficiencies, reduces conflicts and enhances safety for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians. While the intersection of 6th Street and Myrtle Avenue had the highest collision rate of all city intersections in 2007, no pedestrian, bicycle or vehicle collisions have been reported at this intersection since the project was completed in 2009. A new school facility, business and multi-family housing on 6th Street added new foot traffic and activity, without increasing crashes.

More Information

For more information, go to: www.pedbikesafe.org.


Announcements

New webinar on increasing bicycling for daily travel

"How to Increase Cycling for Daily Travel: Lessons from Cities Around the Globe," by John Pucher offers valuable statistics and other information to make the case for bicycling. The webinar was produced for ITE and Active Living Research.

For more information, go to: http://www.bicyclinginfo.org/library/details.cfm?id=4875.

UC Berkeley offers free traffic, pedestrian, and bicycle safety assistance for California Communities

UC Berkeley Institute of Transportation Studies offers free technical assistance services for California communities, cities, and counties.

To inquire or apply, please email pedsafety@techtransfer.berkeley.edu. More information on this technical assistance program for local communities in California can be found at http://www.techtransfer.berkeley.edu/services/.

Bike League names new Bike-Friendly businesses and universities

The League of American Bicyclists has announced 91 new Bike-Friendly Businesses and 17 new Bike-Friendly Universities.

To see the list of businesses, go to: http://bikeleague.org/sites/lab.huang.radicaldesigns.org/files/BFB_fall13_masterlist_0.pdf.

And for the universities, go to: http://bikeleague.org/sites/lab.huang.radicaldesigns.org/files/bfu_masterlist_fall2013.pdf.

Record number of schools participates in Walk to School Day

More than 4,400 schools across the U.S., District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico registered Walk to School Day events with the National Center for Safe Routes to School. Walk to School Day was held Oct. 9, 2013. To learn more about planning a Walk to School Day event, go to http://walkbiketoschool.org/.


Pedestrian and Bicycle Issues in the News

The following is a brief compilation of pedestrian- and bicycle-related news stories from around the world. Web links to the following news stories are time sensitive, so some stories might not be accessible after the initial publication date without required registration.

Benton Officers Design, Build Bike Safety Village
Oct. 30, 2013
Arkansas Matters

Officials meet with Kenmore residents about pedestrian safety, get up-close view of dangers
Nov. 1, 2013
Bothell Reporter

Bike safety requires a little patience and a lot of attention
Nov. 1, 2013
Florida Today

Bicyclist wants to make Yuma more bicycle friendly, safe
Nov. 3, 2013
Yuma Sun

Solana Beach Bike Safety Rodeo event to be held for kids and parents
Nov. 4, 2013
Del Mar Times

No Riders Killed in First 5 Months of New York City Bike-Share Program
Nov. 4, 2013
The New York Times

Cycling summit addresses safety, freedom of the road
Nov. 16, 2013
The Spectrum

City Council debates crosswalk ordinance
Nov. 19, 2013
The Michigan Daily

New crosswalks look to enhance pedestrian safety
Nov. 20, 2013
Fox 9 News

Council Oks bike plan, hoping to address safety
Nov. 20, 2013
The Bakersfield Californian

DOT developing 30-year bike, pedestrian trail plan
Nov. 22, 2013
Spencer Daily Reporter

Pedestrian Safety Campaign Launches in Montgomery County
Nov. 22, 2013
CBS DC

St. Louis County is poised to approve measure for bike- and pedestrian-friendly roads
Nov. 23, 2013
St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Residents learn of sidewalk-bike plan
Nov. 24, 2013
Greenville Online

New effort to put SF resources into pedestrian safety
Nov. 25, 2013
SF Examiner

Extend EHT bike/pedestrian path
Nov.25, 2013
Press of Atlantic City

More bike boxes in the works for area intersections
Nov. 25, 2013
Tallahassee


Upcoming Events

Transportation Research Board 93rd annual meeting (Jan. 12-16, 2014)
http://www.trb.org/AnnualMeeting2014/annualmeeting2014.aspx

New Partners for Smart Growth Conference (Feb. 13-15, 2014)
http://newpartners.org/

Active Living Research annual conference (March 9-12, 2014)
http://activelivingresearch.org/annual-conference-2014

American Planning Association National Planning Conference (April 26-30)
http://www.planning.org/conference/

WTS International annual conference (May 14-16, 2014)
https://www.wtsinternational.org/networking/annual-conference/


Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center

730 Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd
Campus Box 3430
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3430
Phone: 1.888.823.3977
Fax: 919.962.8710
www.walkinginfo.org
www.bicyclinginfo.org