Why isn't Coronado a "bike friendly community"?

Still no white line (sigh) on Glorietta! Why isn't Coronado a more bike friendly community?

My husband and I are back in Coronado again and, like many others, are riding our bikes from the Shores down to Ferry Landing, having lunch and riding back again. We take the bike path until it ends on Glorietta, ride on Glorietta beside the golf course, and then get on the bike path again that runs on the far side of the golf course and under the Coronado Bridge. Multiple other bike riders are out with us, doing exactly the same route (at least those "in the know" are doing this).

However, there's still no bike path marking along side the golf course on Glorietta, despite my first posting about this a year ago.

What I do see is people with very young children on bikes riding on the other side (the side with the houses) of Glorietta, weaving in and out of the parked cars. On these trips I observe there are seldom any cars parked on the golf club side of Glorietta; all the parked vehicles are on the housing side.

It would be a SIMPLE matter to paint a white line, wide enough for two bikes to pass one another, on the golf side of the road.  Not only would this clearly show tourists where it is safe to ride their rented bikes, it would get the bicyclists off the other side of the road. Am not sure what the problem is.

There are good reasons for the City of Coronado to encourage more bike paths:

1. Bike friendly cities are safer: http://www.planetizen.com/node/50020

 2. Bike friendly cities encourage healthy residents with less obesity problems: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bicycle-friendly

 3. Bike friendly cities reduce the usage of cars for short trips, thus reducing traffic congestion (think of Orange Avenue in July!!!) and air pollution.

Interestingly, Coronado is NOT on the list of bike friendly communities in the United States - check the list here:

http://www.bikeleague.org/programs/bicyclefriendlyamerica/#map

http://www.bikeleague.org/programs/bicyclefriendlyamerica/communiti...

http://www.governing.com/news/local/gov-americas-most-bike-friendly...

Coronado is NOT on the list. It isn't just size either; several of the communities on the list are smaller in size than Coronado's population of approximately 25,000.

A few simple things like a white line along the golf-club side of Glorietta might go a long way to helping us get on the national register as one of the most bike friendly communities in the United States.

Wouldn't this be a great goal for Coronado for 2013? Let's get on the list of bike friendly communities in the United States.....and let's start by putting a white line for a bike lane on the golf-club side of Glorietta!

Views: 751

Tags: community

Comment by Dan Orr on July 12, 2012 at 1:44pm

It's a question we ask at every Bicycle Advisory Committee meeting!  We're working on it!  Check the Coronado Bicycle Master Plan on the city's website.


Staff
Comment by Kellee Hearther on July 12, 2012 at 8:37pm

Great post Lorraine.  I like that you don't just complain about something...you offer a solution and many reasons why your solution makes sense.  :)

Comment by Larry Hofstetter on July 14, 2012 at 4:32pm

Lorraine, Thanks for your bicycle input. Coronado's volunteer Bicycle Advisory Committee (BAC) members are pushing the City to improve the bicycle/pestestrian infrastructure and to education and inform. Our next BAC meeting is August 6th at City Hall - please attend, we need your support. Here is a link to the BAC information http://www.coronado.ca.us/department/board.php?fDD=7-197

Also a link to the City's Bicycle Action Line

https://www.coronado.ca.us/egov/apps/action/center.egov?action=form...


Photo Star
Comment by Lorraine Hermann on July 14, 2012 at 5:42pm

Unfortunately, we'll be in Boston by then so can't attend the meeting. Would be happy to help out if there were some other way. We did the same bike route again today and the missing piece of the route would be very much "connecting the dots" between two existing bike paths. It still seems like such a no-brainer to me! 

I also think the bike commission should look into the requirements for obtaining bike friendly community status, as that would be really nice to have. We've got great bike stores (Holland's Bicycles, for example) and lots of places to rent bikes. There are paths marked in multiple places and the bike ride down the Strand is used all the time.

 

Feels to me like Coronado is very much at the 90% level for obtaining bike friendly status. Only a few more things would be needed to push the city into the next tier.

Comment by Melissa Darabian on July 16, 2012 at 11:28am

Lorraine, thank you for putting so much thought and energy into this! 

Comment by carolyn moorhouse on July 16, 2012 at 12:15pm

 I THINK WE ARE FRIENDLY TO BIKERS- I ALWAYS SLOW DOWN AT ANY INTERSECTION- BECAUSE I KNOW THE BIKER WILL GO RIGHT ON THRU THE STOP SIGN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Comment by Jim Rohn on July 16, 2012 at 3:51pm

That is a needed connection between the two dots. Every week when we are there (3 x a year) we ALWAYS go that way and are mystified why one isn't there ... Excellent post and offering of solutions.

Comment by Carmen on July 22, 2012 at 9:28pm

I think it must have something to do with the golf course. I walk that route every day and at least once a week I'm just a few steps short of being hit by a stray golf ball. So far, the odds are in my favor but it's just a matter of time ... If the city puts in a bike lane beside the golf course, someone will - eventually - be hit by a golf ball. Then, the city will have to put up a fence. The fence would be very high and very ugly. Residents who live on Glorietta prefer the occasional ball through the window or dent on their car to an ugly 25 ft. chain link fence. 

Comment by Jim Rohn on July 23, 2012 at 7:46am

never thought of that possible reason ... 


Photo Star
Comment by Lorraine Hermann on July 23, 2012 at 10:27am

The argument that creating a bike lane on the golf-club side of Glorietta might lead to someone getting hit with a golf ball, which would lead to the city being sued, which would lead to a high fence along the golf course, hadn't occurred to me. There is already a high fence along the Coronado Bridge side of the golf course, presumably because random golf balls could hit cars on the bridge (?) - did that ever happen and was that the reason for the fence?

However, the "threat of a fence" argument breaks down into multiple parts and the only relevant parts to the argument are those related to the creation of a white-line bike lane along the golf-club side of Glorietta.

Suppose the lane IS created. Then:

EXISTING BIKE RIDERS

1 (a). Bike riders that ride on the housing side of Glorietta will shift to the other side of the road - so they are closer to the golf course by some number of feet.  Their probability of getting hit goes up, yes, maybe a bit? Plus if they do get it, the ball's force will be stronger since they're some feet closer to the ball.

1 (b). On the other hand, moving the existing bikers to a labelled bike lane reduces their probability of being hit by a car on the other side of the street - either a moving car (as the bike riders weave in and out of traffic) or by someone opening a door to a parked car and hitting a rider who happens to be riding by.

My guess is 1(b) -- getting hit by a car --  is a stronger and more likely risk than 1(a) - getting hit by a ball. That is, bikers (especially children and I see children riding in and out of the cars all the time) are more likely to be hit by a car on the housing side of Glorietta than by a random ball on the golf side of Glorietta, and the damage is likely to be much greater from a car than a ball.

NEW BIKE RIDERS

2 (a). There will be more bike riders who keep on riding past the end of the bike trail (at either end) once the "dots are connected" and a bike path is created.  So their probability of getting hit goes up, true. And, more people might be encouraged to get out and ride their bikes if there was a clear bike path from the Shores all the way down around to Ferry Landing so their probability of getting hit by a random golf ball goes up some percentage also.

2 (b). On the other hand, more bikers from the Shores/Hotel Del using a defined bike path all along Glorietta would create more business for Ferry Landing as people ride there for lunch or for the Tuesday market - or even bike to the Golf Course itself for lunch or dinner. It would  also be a safer (non-car) way for people staying at Ferry Landing to get to the Hotel Del and the beach, etc.  Plus the health benefits (from exercise, reduced gasoline emissions and reduced traffic congestion) of getting people out of cars and off Orange Avenue. In fact, one could imagine people from the Coronado Cays biking all the way around to Ferry Landing and back since we already have a "rails to trails" bike path all along Silver Strand.

Comparing 2(a) and 2(b), again 2(b) looks stronger to me; that is, the likely benefits from the white line along Glorietta -- for new bike riders -- outweigh the likely costs.

RESPONSE TO GETTING HIT BY A BALL

3 (a).  Presumably, whoever got hit by a golf ball could sue. I assume that the city would be responsible (but I'm not a lawyer). The argument also requires that a response to the lawsuit would be to erect an unsightly and high fence, which is another big "if".

3 (b). Someone getting hit by a car on the other side of Glorietta could also sue, but would more likely sue the car owner than the city, (Still, maybe they could argue that the absence of a bike lane was indirectly responsible for the accident, and therefore the city was indirectly responsble for negligence in not "connecting the dots".) On balance, the financial costs (lawsuit, insurance) are more likely to fall on the car owner.

From the city's point of view, 3(a) is therefore likely more costly than 3(b).

However, the fence response is a probability that has to be calculated by multiplying together (1) the increased probability of being hit by a ball (from existing and new bikers) multiplied by (2) the probability of a hit being sufficient to lead to a lawsuit multiplied by (3) the probability that the city or golf club responds by building a fence.

I agree that the probability of a fence being built in response to someone being hit by a golf ball is non-zero, but it doesn't strike me as very high.

This probability has to be weighed against (1) the probability and costs of a bike accident involving a car on the housing side of Glorietta, and (2) the health and business income benefits from creating a bike lane that runs all the way along Silver Strand to Ferry Landing.

My conclusion is that the "fence threat" is overwhelming outweighed by the benefits (in terms of car accidents avoided and positive health and income benefits) of "connecting the dots".

Thinking ahead, suppose there were a white line "connecting the dots" between the two existing bike paths, how long in terms of miles would the total bike path be? Doesn't the bike path along the Strand go all the way south around the bay to a wildlife preserve? Think what the total length of the bike trail would be if you connected the dots and made one long trail all the way around to Ferry Landing. The city could advertise the total length of the bike trail as one of the attractions of Coronado.

I'm sure that there are requirements to be named one of the USA's "bike friendly communities" and I suspect that the total -- unbroken -- length of a bike trail might be one of the conditions.

It would be wonderful if Coronado were added to the list of bike friendly communities in the United States. It would be great advertisement for the city (not as big a boom as being named the #1 family beach in the USA by Dr. Beach, of course, but still a boom for tourism) and a true recognition of the high quality of life in this beautiful city.

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