Wednesday, October 18, 2023

DelDOT's Ignorance of AASHTO Bicycle Facility Guidance

The typical DelDOT "shared use" curb cut, in clear violation of AASHTO guidance

2012 AASHTO Guide for the Development of Bicycle Facilities (pdf)

5.3.5 Other Intersection Treatments: Curb Ramps and Aprons
The opening of a shared use path at the roadway should be at least the same width as the shared use path itself. If a curb ramp is provided, the ramp should be the full width of the path, not including any side flares if utilized. The approach should provide a smooth and accessible transition between the path and the roadway.
AASHTO No-No: Sidewalks as "Bikeways", signed as such

DelDOT's Pavement & Rehabilitation section routinely installs as little as 4' wide ramps and island cut-throughs on bi-directional shared-use pathway (SUP) facilities. According to AASHTO guidance, this practice relegates these facilities to sidewalks. Perhaps nobody even notices this, after all, "why build good bike facilities, when nobody rides because of the lack of good facilities?" ~Barry Childress (Chair, Baltimore Spokes).

According to unnamed experts in the field, DelDOT's ignorance of AASHTO makes them responsible in the advent of an accident or crash. Further, the installation of signs indicating these are bikeways, when in fact bicycle equity and safety is gravely compromised should be an embarrassment to the Department. It also indicates just how involved the various advocacy orgs (DE Bicycle Council, DE Greenways, Bike DE, etc) are in "connecting everyone with a bicycle-friendly transportation network".

All of the $44M in RAISE funds granted to DE are going into two high profile projects that will fix none of the problems with Delaware's current bicycling infrastructure. Most of what we see now is in a state of disconnect and ruin, and will stay that way thanks to the above parties. Instead of developing design guidance for SUP width and alignment through stroad intersections, for example, and turning the countless "goat paths" in New Castle County into AASHTO-compliant pathways, every dollar goes to benefit a tiny minority.

The installation of grossly inadequate "multi-modal" infrastructure continues unabated in Delaware, and will guarantee that we remain a whopping ~0.02% bicycling modeshare. The State will continue as most dangerous in the U.S. for bicyclists and 2nd most deadly behind Florida. Oil-based transportation is the #1 source of AGW emissions, as our "leaders" in govt agencies and non-profits (most of whom never actually bike, or even walk apparently) make the decisions that seal this fate. Shame on all of them.

10' wide is reduced to 5' on the Linden Hill shared use pathway at Skyline Drive in Pike Creek

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.