AS&R has sent a letter to the Berkeley City Council, Transportation Commission, and Transportation Division providing input on Berkeley’s draft Bike Plan. Chief among this input is asking that the plan include connections on Berkeley’s side to all the cycling routes proposed in Albany’s Active Transportation Plan (ATP). Most of these connections were already proposed in the version of the Berkeley Bike Plan available for the October 20th Transportation Commission meeting, but a couple were missing.
Below this input, AS&R suggested the organizing vision for improving the bike boulevards of seeking to make cycling west (downhill), and north and south (cross slope) faster than motorists can travel on the adjacent arterials during peak traffic periods. This is required in order to motivate a substantial percentage of people to switch to biking for some of their trips.
In accord with this, AS&R asked that the Berkeley plan optimize the bike boulevards for cycling by replacing diagonal diverters with more friendly semi diverters or other motorist barriers, eliminating stop signs, and improving crossings of motorist arterials other than with the rectangular rapid flashing beacons (RRFBs) in the current plan. Paraphasing Transportation Division staff, RRFBs are planned because they are cheap, even though they may be fatal because they do not actually give people biking the legal right of way to cross when activated.
AS&R also asked Berkeley to define a rapid cycling network in addition to the low-stress network it has defined, as was done in Albany’s ATP. It suggested that route signage should be uniform within each network rather than along each route type as this would facilitate people connecting across all route types with a specific network, which is their desire.
Finally, AS&R asked that the plan be named something other than “Bike Plan” as that is a misnomer with regard to its goal of getting more people biking.