Pasadena is in the process of updating its Bicycle Master Plan. I went to BMP Public Workshop #4 last night at City Hall where “they” unveiled their plans so far. It looks like some pretty good ideas. Mostly what you would expect: more bike lanes and routes and signage and such.
Most exciting was what they are calling Emphasized Bikeways or Bike Blvds. which basically can use any number of traffic calming tools with an eye toward Complete Streets design: 4 lanes into 2, bike lanes or sharrows, bulb-outs at intersections, roundabouts, and occasional sections passable only to bikes and peds (I’m not sure of the name for those.)
Also, really cool was the idea of Green Lanes. These are actually painted lanes in traffic that are shared between autos and bikes but they make it very clear that bikes belong. These are in use in Portland, OR and Long Beach, CA. Long Beach, by the way, is making rapid advancements toward becoming the most bike friendly city in the country – I’ve got to get down there and check it out sometime.
There are separate plans that encompass the Rose Bowl Loop and proposed bike paths in Hahamongna Park but those areas look promising, too.
It was mostly a bicycle crowd at the meeting but as usual with these types of public meetings there were some people there that seemed to just want to be curmudgeonly – mainly a few carists that are terrified that they’ll be losing their right to the road. Which, by the way, they won’t. In fact, most, if not all, of these changes will make it a nicer place to drive, too.
Although, there was a great comment from an Art Center College of Design person who basically said, Look lady, you gotta realize the age of the car is over. What were designing these days (a lot of future car design is done at Art Center) are very small cars and in 25 years we won’t be using the car the way we are today – it will be so much more focused on transit and human power and complete streets/communities so we might as well get with the program here in Pasadena right from the start and be a forerunner for the country.
Things are looking good for an even more bike friendly Pasadena in the near future.