Calling All Roadway Experts: Fix this Proposed Intersection

Each of us have strengths and weaknesses. For example, I have an almost preternatural ability to spot plagiarism in an 8th Grader’s essay, but have zero visual intelligence when it comes to roadway schematics, drawings, renderings, you name it.

To wit: I stare and stare, but, in looking at the proposed intersection of Bridge Blvd. and Isleta Blvd. as part of the major reconstruction of Bridge from Coors to the Barelas Bridge:

isleta bridge proposed
Proposed intersection of Bridge Blvd. at Isleta Blvd. presented earlier this month at public meeting. With plans only at “60%” of final, still plenty of input possibilities. That’s where you come in.

I see bike lanes, new and widened sidewalks, etc., but I don’t see how to best explain how we can instead do something like:


alta protected intersection
Just one of about 43 different examples of protected intersections in Alta Planning’s “Lessons Learned: The Evolution of the Protected Intersection”

So with the public comment deadline for this phase of the Bridge Boulevard project coming up on May 11th, I’m relying on the kindness of BB strangers to chime in with ideas. I know you roadway schematic/drawing/exhibit board savants are out there. I’ve seen you in action.

What should we do with the Bridge/Isleta intersection?

For those savants who don’t often trek to this part of the world, a huge amount of the travel action (both cars and bikes) is to/from Isleta, moving north onto eastbound Bridge (note the two right-turn lanes) turning southbound onto Isleta from westbound Bridge (note the bike box spread across all lanes, supposedly for this purpose). Presently, cyclists coming up Isleta are often endangered by motorists flying around the corner, pinching bike lane space and endangering everyone/thing in their crazed path to get on Bridge Blvd. eastbound.

In short, anyone who has experienced riding a bike or walking in this intersection knows we need to be better protected in doing so, and this proposed solution doesn’t seem to do enough of that.

But what should we do instead? 

I’ll sit here grading occasionally plagiarized 8th Grade essays while you answer this question. Be sure to show your work in a way us visually inept people will understand. This assignment is due by May 11th, which makes it an excellent “Final Exam” for a Spring Semester of the class known as “Better Burque.”

Your “grade” depends on it, but, far more seriously, what this important intersection looks like in the not-too-distant future may actually depend on it, as well.

3 thoughts on “Calling All Roadway Experts: Fix this Proposed Intersection

  1. Looks like another good candidate for the “Protected Intersection” design.

    The SW and SE corners of the intersection are easy and could have the same treatment as the bottom half of the protected intersection diagram you showed above. The only major difference is that we have on street cycle lanes and not physically protected cycle tracks coming into the intersection. A way to handle this would be to have the cycle lane swing a bit to the right behind a curb just before the intersection then behind the “Corner Safety Island” next to the pedestrian area. Then after the intersection the cyclist would be similarly ramped back onto the street to go onto there merry way.

    Ideally the cycling areas would all be at street level and painted green so everyone knows where the cyclist should be. The pedestrians are on sidewalk level.

    Lets all watch this video again since it walks us through the transition from a standard intersection to the Protected Intersection.

    The north side of the intersection is a bit harder and less conventional. The normal Dutch intersection has the cyclists doing a box type left turn. (brainstorming here) So the cyclists coming from the east and turning south would continue through the intersection, then pull right into a bikebox north of the curb to wait for the light to change again, then cross to the south.

    Cyclists traveling east that needed to turn left into the driveway on the north would continue straight at the SW corner then wait at the SE corner to cross again to the north.

    Of course there would be cycle friendly signaling such as “Leading Pedestrian(bicycle) Interval” treatment.

    That’s a start. Any other ideas out there?


  2. Charlie: Thanks for the ideas and the link, particularly for the lesson for those of us for which this stuff doesn’t come easy. I hope you’re passing these ideas along to, as are others out there. Remember, the public comment deadline is May 11th. If any out there personally know of BernCo staff devoted to this project, it also never hurts to pass your thoughts along to them specifically. – Scot/BB


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