Is This Street Wide Enough?

I have posted a video of a group of avid recreational cyclists riding on Hampshire Street in Cambridge, in the middle of the day.

Ah, once again, bostonbiker.org won’t let me embed a video, but you may view it in glorious full-screen high definition at the link below:

Is This Two-Lane Street Wide Enough? from John Allen on Vimeo.

The cyclists in this video are riding on a stretch of Hampshire Street which was the subject of a study of the effect of various lane stripings on cyclist behavior, a study which I have reviewed. The study concluded that bike lane striping led bicyclists to ride safely, farther from parked cars. My review showed that statement to be inaccurate, due to misrepresentation of bicyclists’ distance from the parked cars. Another reviewer, Wayne Pein, has reached the same conclusion.

My video shows behavior consistent with the study once the numbers have been corrected, all the more distressingly because most of the cyclists in the video are middle-aged or older and have years of experience. For the most part, however, that experience has been in rural areas and outer suburbs rather than in the city.

My video also bears on the proposed reconstruction of Beacon street, in Somerville. Beacon street is the extension of Hampshire street, and has the same profile and character. An earlier post on this blog offers my comments on Beacon street.

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