Monday, 30 September 2013

Kagraner Platz

Kagraner Platz has been totally rebuilt over the summer of RadJahr in VeloCity 2013.  The tram tracks were relayed and the whole street resurfaced.  Of course the planners have not forgotten cyclists in this no expense spared redesign.  Yet again Vienna cycle planning best practice in action:

This bus driver is not expected to tolerate the danger of driving along Habsburgergasse or Mariahilferstrasse but this 50kmph squeeze the cyclist into the doorzone with your long bendy bus is Best Practice?

There is zero logic here and this death by design has to stop. No one with any sense what so ever would cycle along this road, it is just another example of modal share cleansing.

Friday, 20 September 2013

Junction Design

As part of the Ring VO Radfahren in der Stadt there was a very interesting lecture from Michael Meschik on cycle infrastructure design.  His lecture can be seen and heard in full here:

A lot of very good reasonable points are made in this lecture but I was very disappointed to see the following slide.

This is text book Vehicular Cycling Sect Radwege are Dangerous Bullshit.  It results in the conclusion that cyclists need to be integrated into the motor traffic at junctions so that they can be seen.  This idea is part of the Dutch Strategy for Access Road junctions but in Vienna the VC Sect constantly use this to corrupt planning discussions about Through Roads where this strategy is totally inappropriate and irresponsible.

Austrian design guides and junction implementations often abandon cyclists or use them as human traffic calming devices.  This induces conflict and is very unpleasant for all road users.  Cyclists develop various creative strategies to cope that normally involve illegal use of pedestrian crossings, conflict with pedestrians and unpredictable movements and blocking positioning that annoy car drivers.

Junctions are accident spots so the Dutch use a wide range of designs to reduce conflict and or motor traffic speed depending on traffic volumes. This is complicated but Paul James has done some excellent drawings and explanations. Click the pictures for an explanation.

Mark Wagenbuur's brilliant video explains the basics of some of these types of junction.

This all looks a bit confusing and difficult to understand but the use of Sharks Teeth and other details make these junctions clear and intuitive for all road users.  I believe the clarity of purpose and resulting predictability of movements together with the clear rights of way create a better low conflict Road Culture.  I might be wrong but I am sure it is not intelligent to state that Dutch Junction design is all wrong and only works because the car drivers and cyclists are some how different.

So the big question is how do we get politicians, planners and cycle activists to get over their prejudices about separation and get them to spend the time to understand why the Dutch have been so successful with their cycle traffic planning, rather than brushing it off as a culture thing?

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

2nd Bike Infrastrucute Workshop

On Wednesday (tomorrow) this week there will be a bike infrastructure workshop that is open to anyone that is interested.  If you have time please come along on Wednesday afternoon and take part.  There are more details here:

This is linked to the Mobility Week and the foundation of the RADbotschaft!

This sounds like a very promising initiate that has potential to get some Dutch competence into the planning of the cycle infrastructure in Austria.  At this stage it is very hard to say how this will develop but I really really hope this is the start of the end of this blog.