Bad Striping Job Leaves Comanche NE Dangerous and SEBLed

Good story from KRQE’s Marissa Lucero on the treacherously dangerous restriping on Comanche NE, here shown with fascinatingly hovering silhouetted cyclist approaching San Pedro eastbound:

comanche and san pedro

In addition to pointing out the just plain inaccurate striping done on driving/left-turn lanes along the stretch, the piece also interviews cyclists (that doesn’t always happen) and gets into the issue of Suddenly Ending Bike Lanes (SEBL), a long-term Better Burque obsession.

Kudos to KRQE for visually illustrating what it’s like for cyclists to face SEBLs, required safety hovering included (although one really needs more than hovering height than shown above to clear the roofs on SUVs and big trucks), all of which brings up a proposed solution for this and many other SEBLs around town:

Get rid of the right/right-turn lane

A check of MRCOG traffic counts for this stretch of Comanche shows Average Weekday Traffic (AWDT) to be right at 9,500, well under what should be the minimum threshold for a “road diet” (i.e., lane reduction). Applying a threshold of, say, 12,000 AWDT (a figure lower than currently in place elsewhere, e.g., Seattle) would remove excess driving lanes at many SEBL sites around town.

Also interesting to note here is that the cyclical repaving job on Comanche fell under the 2015 Complete Streets Ordinance (as all do all jobs that now come up when due for repaving), and thus went before a review committee (full disclosure: I sat on this committee this year). That committee was told it could not consider road diets in its recommendations, thus leaving our toothless committee to leave Comanche/San Pedro in its SEBL state.

Something to think about as the City considers renewal/update to the 2015 Complete Streets Ordinance. Something to think about rather hard.





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