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-   -   Biking advice - the part of my route that's trouble (http://bikeportland.org/forum/showthread.php?t=1542)

Buckwad 01-18-2008 02:15 PM

Biking advice - the part of my route that's trouble
I cycle-commute from 60th & Steele to the Lloyd district and use the stretch of Steele from 41st - 60th every day and I've had some problems with auto traffic on this stretch, despite it being a bike-route. The bike-route sign is there in on the SE corner of the intersection of Steele and 41st, facing west. Not sure if this is designated as a 'bike boulevard'?

http://maps.google.com/?ie=UTF8&ll=45.487967,-122.619867&spn=0.009492,0.018497&z=16&om=0&layer=c &cbll=45.48469,-122.62056&cbp=1,447.207346231285,,0,-4.397279889501754

It seems like people in cars are using Steele (30mph, residential, low traffic, wider street) as a way to get between 39th and 52nd, and as a way to avoid Holgate (school zones, probably the worst potholes of any 'boulevard' in Portland) and Woodstock (25mph, school zones, lots of pedestrians) during rush-hour. I can understand this as a sometimes driver myself. My problem is that this road falls in the too narrow but too wide category. The road is too narrow for a bike lane and on-street parking (by my guesstimate at least). The road is too wide in that people in cars try to squeeze by to pass on my left if I don't take the full lane (I ride about 2 ft left of the 'door zone'), rather than using the oncoming lane for passing (it's a dashed yellow line the whole way). There's sporadic on-street parking here, so I try and keep to the right only if there's a one-block-plus section clear of parked cars, and then signal when I merge back out into the main lane.

Anyone have thoughts about this? Should I just be pushing further left in the lane to force cars into passing in the oncoming lane when I have a parked car to my right? I've tried this to mixed response from drivers... Or is there some kind of issue with the street markings that are making this ambiguous for car drivers? I was planning to send this comment to the City and ask if there were plans to add some street marking for cyclists.. A Sharrow at least, if not a bike lane (Gladstone has one, and I think it's as wide?

fetishridr 01-18-2008 02:35 PM

have you tried any streets that arent bike blvd's?
oftentimes the normal residential streets have less overall traffic, and the same number of stops. i find the 41st street North south route to be really crowded. try crossing west of 39th, then proceeding north on the next bike blvd over. otherwise, take more of the lane. This street sounds like it could use some traffic calming.

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