For the past several weeks and probably for several more, there has been and will be extensive street work on Madison Ave. You’ll see a lot of traffic cones, heavy equipment, workers in hard hats, dust and dirt, pipes, re-paved strips, and so on. This is in preparation for the final phase of the Madison Avenue Traffic Calming project – Partridge St. to Lark St. This “below surface work” must be done before the repaving and re-striping of the roadway. It appears that these last phases will be done in this fall with installation of traffic control signals to follow.
Completion will mean 1-1/2 miles of sane motor vehicle traffic with left turn lanes, cross walks, and new traffic control devices and signs. It will also mean that people in cars can go no faster than the car ahead of them – hopefully, the posted 30 mph or less. No more crazy passing on the right or using the parking lane as a through lane.
The continuation of the bicycle lanes from Allen-Partridge to Lark St. will provide people on bicycles with a smooth, safe ride Pine Hills Neighborhood Association to “downtown.”
It remains for people who want better bicycle facilities in the City of Albany (this would mean YOU) to start pushing for continuing the lanes past Manning Blvd. to connect to the current bicycle lanes in Guilderland and then on to Crosse Gates. Accompanying this must be mapping of cross town and downtown routes from Lark St./Delaware Ave. For suggested routes, see the BikeAlbanyMap.
None of this will happen unless there is a big and sustained push from those who want a livable Albany.
So get cracking!
A number of transportation related projects are envisioned for the Western Ave./Washington Ave. corridors. One of these is the hotel proposal for the south side of Crossgates Mall. To ensure that people on bicycles are considered in this plan, the Albany Bicycle Coalition has taken steps to be involved in the review process. Following in is one example of these steps.
May 16, 2017
Mr. Stephen J. Feeney
Chairman – Planning Board
Town of Guilderland
Town Hall, Route 20
PO Box 12084-0339
Guilderland, NY 12084
Dear Mr. Feeney:
On April 26, 2017, representatives of the Albany Bicycle Coalition, Inc. attended the Planning Board meeting regarding the Crossgates Mall Hotel – Lehner Rd. proposal. Our interest in this is predicated on our commitment to making the streets and roads in the area welcoming to people on bicycles and safer for all road users.
We were encouraged that the proposed site plan for the relocated Lehner Road included a bike path. With recent developments in the area, we believe that this project – with the proper guidance and input – can contribute to success in our goals for this notably cycling unfriendly section of Guilderland. In particular, the Westmere Corridor project, the advent of CDPHP Cycle! BikeShare this summer, completion of the Madison Avenue Traffic Calming project and its direct connection to Guilderland via Western Ave, and the growing cultural interest in reducing pollution, road deaths and environmental degradation all suggest a firm commitment by the Town of Guilderland to ensure that this new project is integrated into these other efforts. I would also note that the representative of Crossgates, Michael Shanley, approached us informally outside the meeting to express interest in our being involved in plan’s development. We hope that you will be in a position to encourage this collaboration as the project moves forward.
At the hearing, we inquired about the appropriate forum to raise our concerns and to explore plans by the developer. You suggested that the upcoming site plan review sessions were the proper setting.
Accordingly, please include the following representatives from ABC in the announcement of these sessions: [List of contacts follows]
Albany Bicycle Coalition, Inc.
- IN – City bike
- IN – Step-through frame
- IN – “Twenty (i.e., mph) is plenty”
- OUT – All cars-all the time
- IN – Balance bike
- IN – Everyday rider, transit rider
- IN – “Good morning,” “good afternoon,” “good evening”
- IN – Civilized cycling
- OUT – Vehicular cyclists and John Foster’s unfounded theories.
- IN – No right on red when people walking have the “walk light” in any direction
- OUT – Rolling right on red anywhere
- IN – Fenders
- IN – People on bicycles, people walking, people in cars
- OUT – “Cyclist,” “pedestrian,” “drivers”
- IN – Panniers, baskets
- IN – Chatting, paying attention
- IN – Comfort
- IN – Upright position
- IN – Hats
- OUT – Helmets (but wear one)
- IN – Protected bike lanes
- IN – Supple, wide tires
- IN – [Bicycles] “May use full lane”
- OUT – [Bicycles] “In lane”
Mostly courtesy “Momentum,” Aug-Sep 2013
Resolutions for people on bicycles who want to make cycling safer for all by promoting a positive image of cycling …
- I will – Smile and say “good morning,” “good afternoon,” etc. to everyone I meet while riding.
- I will – Remember that the one certain way to increase safety for people on bicycles is to ride my bicycle as often as I can. All the bicycle lanes, tickets, smart traffic lights, “share the road signs,” blinkie lights, and reflective clothing will do little if not accompanied by MORE PEOPLE riding MORE OFTEN – so that all road users get used to each other being on the street.
- I will – Shop locally at locally owned businesses who hire local people and pay a fair wage.
- I will – Obey the traffic law. I will stop for signs and signals especially when people in cars or on foot can see me, and I will stay off the sidewalks.
- I will – Lube my chain and check my tires (for wear and correct air pressure).
- I will – Check that my brakes work (lever is a thumb’s distance or more from the handle bars when full “on”) and the pads contact the wheel rim braking surface.
- I will – Be deferential to all pedestrians no matter how crazily they act
- I will – Speak out on behalf of people on bicycles in a polite and non-confrontational manner.
- I will – Signal my stops, scan and signal my turns, and make eye contact with people in cars and on foot.
- I will – Speak out and write in on issues facing cycling. I will keep up to date on developments that affect safe use of the streets by people on bicycles.
- I will – Support my local bike rescue and bicycle shops. I will buy on the internet only when my bicycle shop does not stock or cannot order what I need.
- I will – Wave and smile to those in cars who are bothered by my presence on a bicycle on my streets (no “one finger waves,” s.v.p.)
- I will – Be Kind.
Since I have lived a car-free lifestyle for the past six months, not of my own choice rather out of necessity, I have become very familiar with the alternate transportation system of getting from here to there that Albany has to offer. If you want to live a greener, and I hate this phrase, more carbon neutral life here are some of your options: