I decided I'd make a post, or maybe even a series of the street construction project instead. It seemed to me this project was not really as good for the cyclists as it first seemed. Here's a video on youtube so you can see it yourself.
The new houses being built is the excuse for moving the bikeway. The bikeway used to be next to the street. The boring, straight, long street has no protection from the wind, and is even a slight uphill. With the new high houses I think the wind tunnel would be even worse. By moving the bikeway closer to the houses, they can plant some trees to calm down the wind. And the bikeway is not so boring when you've got the chance of being run over by cars coming behind the corner of the building:
|A look from the right. Can't see the cars until you're almost on the crossing.|
- New route is not a straight line, not so boring
- Protection from wind
- New surface, no potholes
- On the side of the street the bikeway was covered by the yield signs on the sidestreets. Cyclists had priority over cars on the sidestreets and over cars wanting to turn to the sidestreets. By moving the bikeway 20 meters off the intersection, the street-bikeway crossing is a stand-alone crossing on which bikes must yield to traffic. Cyclist on one of the busiest routes must yield to cars going to and coming from the parking lots of the buildings!
- The old bikeway crossing was pretty smooth, now there is and extra hump in the center of the crossing.
- Limited visibility, with no speed humps for the cars. Why not build a raised crossing?
A vehicle exiting a roundabout is turning, and must yield to traffic going straight. Cars have to yield to bikes! And the other direction is covered by the yield sign. Cyclists have not lost priority after all.
Now, the raised crossing would still make sense. I'll have to see if I can find out if they're going to build it or not. The crossing has asphalt now, and I think they would have to cut it open to install a raised crossing. That would suggest they're not going to build it. On the other hand, they need all sorts of heavy equipment and lots of gravel and cement and stuff when they're building. So it might make sense to do the humps after the buildings are finished.
Is it going to be better than before? We'll find out when it's finished.
Edit: I got a reply from a city planner, and he said there's no plans for a raised crossing at the moment as it should be fine as it is. The traffic circle will be built next year if they have the money to do it, and it will improve the intersection experience.