The investigators seem to be unaware that the bike lane behind them in the staged photo is substandard width. One would think that the stencil that doesn’t fit would be a sufficient clue.

Evaluation of On-Street Bicycle Facilities Added to Existing Roadways
is a monograph by the Center for Transportation Research at The University of Texas at Austin. It reports on research entitled Operational and Safety Impacts When Retrofitting Bicycle Lanes. That project was performed in cooperation with the Texas Department of Transportation and the Federal Highway Administration.

Critique of Evaluation of On-Street Bicycle Facilities Added to Existing Roadways explains why this “research” is more accurately described as junk science.

9 Responses to “Bicycle Facilities Added”

  1. Bike/Ped Professional Says:

    Ha, I’m glad to see someone pointing out this bogus “study”. I also immediately noticed the irony of choosing a location which depicts an improperly designed lane to tout the virtues of same.

    Another irony is that they point out that bikes ride closer to the travel lane (when in a striped bike lane) and cars driver closer to the bike lane edge stripe which results in decreased passing space in an overtaking maneuver. And they say this is a good thing since it reduces encroachments into adjacent lanes (over reaction they call it). I didn’t notice if they looked at whether this holds true for commercial vehicles (read trucks) as well.

  2. Wayne Pein Says:

    Sometimes it takes a little insight to realize many bicycling “research” studies are bogus, while for others it’s abundantly clear that they aren’t worth the paper/electrons they are written on!


  3. Tim Says:

    I love your comment about cyclist experience. They mention it but don’t explore the implications. That one jumped off the page when I read the report and I spent time anticipating their discussion. I was disappointed.

    CTR is also doing a study on some experients with bike boxes and painted bike lanes in Austin. Since I’m an alternate member of the Austin BAC, I look forward to reading their research. Now with a skeptical eye.

  4. — But I don’t line the use of the word “encroach”. It assumes a rigid allocation of space which fits with the researchers’ premises, but is unrealistic and often unsafe. In any other context involving overtaking, it would be called “merging into the adjacent lane.” If it requires crossing a dashed lin,e it is perfectly normal and legal. If it requires crossing a double yellow line, then there is a legal concern, but on the other hand, Maine has recently made a partial merge across a double yellow line to overtake bicyclists legal, and it happens routinely here in Massachusetts as well without any particular problems that I have noticed. I just went out for a bicycle club ride today and was overtaken this way dozens of times — no problem…comments on this?

    • Wayne Pein Says:

      I agree that “encroach” can have multiple interpretations. How is it that if a motorist partially crosses a line, dotted or solid, to pass a bicyclist is it often called an “encroach” into the adjacent lane, but passing wholly or partially within the lane is not thought of as encroaching onto the bicyclist’s lane?

  5. Brian D. Potter Says:

    This is a standard width bike lane in Austin. Worst “Bicycle Friendly City” I’ve ever ridden in. Thank you for keeping these folks honest…

  6. […] as less “encroachment” into the other lane. IOW, they don’t move over! Here are 2 examples: Bicycle Facilities Added and Red […]

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