Today’s Headlines

  • MTA Issues RFP for MetroCard Replacement (NewsPost)
  • State Lawmakers Want to Enable Police to Scan Drivers’ Phones After Crashes (Gothamist, Post)
  • Post Lionizes Cop Who Blamed Ticket on de Blasio, Now Suspended (PostGothamist, News)
  • Post Lets David Weprin Rant Against Toll Reform
  • Driver Who Killed Mary Cergua on Hylan Boulevard Charged Under Right of Way Law (Post)
  • Suffolk: Curb-Jumping Driver Kills Mom and Dog (Post, WABC); Psycho Targets Red Light Cameras (Post)
  • Riders Alliance: Presidential Candidates Should Make Transit a Priority, Not a Prop (News)
  • Who Would Cover the Cost of Transit Fare Discounts for the Poor? (Slant)
  • Gothamist Delves Into the History of Community Boards
  • The Shelly Silver Machine Is Alive and Well (Voice)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • Alexander Vucelic

    imagine, until the early 1970s it was perfectly normal for children to play ball games in the middle of the street.

  • reasonableexplanation

    http://gothamist.com/2014/03/01/video_the_zen_pleasure_of_hitting_5.php

    Here’s a gothamist article from 2 years ago where 55 greens were hit, and in the comments, one with 125. The speed the guy was going at was 28-30mph

  • ahwr

    Most people don’t average 20 mph when biking around the city, even if you sometimes might at 2am. Most people don’t average 15 mph when biking around the city, even if you sometimes might at 2am. 10mph is much more typical.

  • Joe R.

    People are that out of shape? Or maybe just riding junk piles? Seriously, I have to ride my brakes to go 10 mph. I’ve ridden with lots of people. 15 mph seems to be about an average cruising pace if you’re able to stay in motion.

    Time of day makes a difference but not as big as you might think. On the one hand, traffic and double-parked vehicles slow you down. On the other, you can often draft a large vehicle and cruise at 30+ mph to make up for the slowdowns. Late nights I pretty much need to break my wind all the time.

  • ahwr

    Not everyone wants to get where they’re going a sweaty mess. Or tired. Or even all that out of breath. For some cycling is like an exhilarating thrill ride. For others it’s not much more than a moderate pace walk – I don’t mean your 5mph speed walking. Both styles of riding have their place and can be fun. Google maps travel times are geared towards the latter.

    A huge portion of potential cyclists will never draft large vehicles at 30 mph. Are you kidding me? Do you really think most people would do this?

    Cruising pace != average speed.

  • Joe R.

    For what it’s worth I’m not a sweaty mess averaging 15 mph, other than in the summer when I’ll be a sweaty mess just standing still. I guess equipment has a lot to do with it. 17 mph on my bike is a nice, easy pace. 20+ mph is where you have to start putting some effort into it.

    BTW, you don’t need to be right on someone’s bumper to draft them. I get a nice boost following ~50 feet behind buses. I think a lot more cyclists actually would do stuff like this if they knew about it. I kind of discovered it on my own. It’s still one of cycling’s best kept secrets, other than in racing circles.

  • I have mentioned to you many times that I average about 10 miles per hour for all my riding, including stops for lights. I am typically moving a faster rate than that on a straightaway, and slower than that on an uphill climb. And I am definitely not out of shape, having ridden amounts over the past three full years that have increased from 5800 to 6400 to 6800 miles.

    A riding speed of 10 to 12 miles per hour is one that I consider normal. I don’t notice a difference in the number of people who pass me (while we both are riding, not while they are blowing reds as I am stopped) as compared to the number of people whom I pass.

  • Joe R.

    If you average 10 mph and stop for all red lights, I’d say you have to be cruising at least 15 mph, probably closer to 20 mph. Back when I used to stop at all red lights, I’d have to jackrabbit up to 25 mph just to average 12 or 13 mph. When I cruised at 20 mph, I’d average closer to 10 mph. Given the number of miles you’ve ridden, I’ve little doubt 15 to 20 mph is a fairly easy cruising speed for you.

    As for passing versus being passed, I’ve noted when I go about 15 mph I seem to pass as many people as pass me. When I get into the low 20s, I’m passing just about everyone. The rare times I might be riding 10 or 12 mph, other than uphills, pretty much everyone is passing me.

    If you want to play around with numbers here’s a good power-speed calculator: http://www.kreuzotter.de/english/espeed.htm

    100 watts is about what your average rider can put out. That gets you about 13 mph on a mountain bike with fat tires, 15 or 16 mph on a racing bike, depending upon riding position. I’m sure you can put out way more than 100 watts for a long period. When I ride half the miles you do I can manage 200 watts for about an hour.

  • reasonableexplanation

    2-3x a week. I do my cardio outside however (I enjoy running). I get that you’re trying to say that biking fast is good cardio, but that’s your lifestyle, and if it fits you; that’s great! Biking as transport and biking as exercise can be combined for some… but honestly, about 3 out of 4 times I need to travel somewhere I can’t, or don’t want to arrive there sweaty. I figure it’s the same for most.

  • Joe R.

    I can’t speak for Alexander but I know whenever I get on a bike I’m in a rush. 😉 It just turns out that way even on days where I start out saying I’m taking it easy today.

    It’s not difficult to combine biking for both exercise and transport if you work within biking distance. Go easy on the way to work so you don’t arrive sweaty. Save the cardio for the trip home, then jump in the shower when you get there. I work at home so it’s moot to me. I bike pretty much solely for exercise, but I’d do a lot more errand biking if safe bike parking were available.

  • ahwr

    The rare times I might be riding 10 or 12 mph, other than uphills, pretty much everyone is passing me.

    Except all the people also going 10-12.

  • ahwr

    I’d do a lot more errand biking if safe bike parking were available.

    Get a junk bike and a good lock and stop worrying about it. Bike theft is a vastly overblown problem.

  • Miles Bader

    People are that out of shape? Or maybe just riding junk piles?

    Yes to both, but also simply that once biking becomes widespread amongst the general public, rather than people who are into bikes, many people simply don’t care to go that fast.

    They dawdle. They’re out of shape. They ride a heavy, badly maintained, bike, that cost them $100 new. They have a bunch of junk stuck on the back, and are carrying two kids, their friend, and the dog. They’re 100 years old and can’t walk well (bikes are an awesome tool to extend the range of the elderly).

    Seriously, I have to ride my brakes to go 10 mph

    Surely you’ve realized by now that you’re exceptional….?

  • Joe R.

    I think I’m only exceptional in that I actually bother to keep my bike somewhat maintained. The reason I have such a disconnect between what people say are typical riding speeds versus what I actually do in practice is the fact I was the class weakling. I was the person who never got picked when the other kids played ball, the one who usually came in close to last in any race, the one who was out sick quite a bit. Given all that, the fact something like 17 mph is a fairly easy pace for me at age 53 makes me surprised your average rider isn’t doing more like 22 mph. And incidentally back in the 1980s I remember some other cyclists calling 22 mph a “flat commuter pace”. Anyway, I thought all this worth a mention so you might see where I’m coming from. Either the rest of the world got really out of shape from the time I was a kid, or I magically overcame my childhood deficiencies.

  • Alexander Vucelic

    biking slow is good cardio 75% of Max. you should also account for the time the 2-3x times a week of exercise, necessary because you drove to park slope 🙂 🙂

    riding the bike definitely less time than driving even in your niche example

  • Alexander Vucelic

    hence They are the biggest advocates of disarming the citizenry

  • ahwr

    Magically by spending a few decades riding? That would probably do it.

  • AnoNYC

    Considering that large numbers of people are usually traveling in the same direction, during peak hours, I would have to disagree. The most common trip in NYC is Manhattan bound during the day, and a car will not beat the subway from the places where most people live. A trip from the neighborhoods around the Grand Concourse, Washington Heights, Jackson Heights, etc to Manhattan south of Harlem, you can’t/won’t beat the subway due to traffic. Most people in NYC live near subways in those kind of mentioned neighborhoods.

    For trips that rely on buses, yes, personal automobiles are typically faster.

  • AnoNYC

    How is it possible to drive from Ocean Pkwy to 5th Ave during the day in 15-20 minutes? Flying car? The reverse would not be a common trip in NYC during the day considering that Park Slope is not a major job center.

  • ahwr

    The most common trip in NYC is Manhattan bound during the day,

    https://www.nymtc.org/project/surveys/survey2010_2011RTHS.html

    96.3% of auto trips that start in NYC outside of Manhattan are to somewhere other than Manhattan. 80.3% were intracounty.

    For work trips (all modes) that start in NYC outside of Manhattan 79.2% went somewhere other than Manhattan. 58.1% were intracounty. For nonwork trips 95.2% are to somewhere other than Manhattan, 88.4% are intracounty.

    Very few trips are to Manhattan.

  • AnoNYC

    That data isn’t exactly disproving what I said.

    The link you provided describes the commuting patterns across the entire metropolitan area, The Manhattan CBD still has the largest single concentration of jobs, cultural destinations, schools, hospitals, etc of any single location.

    A hell of a lot more people are traveling into Manhattan south of Harlem on any given day than are traveling into say Flushing, Jamaica, downtown Newark, downtown White Plains, etc.

    In fact, the population of Manhattan approximately doubles during the day, mostly in the CBD. What other single location attracts over a million people?

    Basically, Manhattan is going to have the most incoming traffic in comparison to any other area. It is also an island and only accessible by bridge and tunnel via automobile.

  • ahwr

    The link you provided describes the commuting patterns across the entire metropolitan area,

    It was a general travel survey, not just a commuter survey. And they have data breakdowns to the county level. The numbers I gave above were based on origins in NYC outside of Manhattan. For auto trips starting anywhere in the study region the proportion not going to Manhattan increases to 99.1%. For work trips by any mode 92.6% don’t go to Manhattan. For non work trips by any mode 98.5% don’t go to Manhattan.

    A hell of a lot more people are traveling into Manhattan south of Harlem on any given day than are traveling into say Flushing, Jamaica, downtown Newark, downtown White Plains, etc.

    The Manhattan CBD is by far the largest destination in the region. My point is that as a destination it represents a tiny share of travel. Transit is much less effective in a many-many system with diffused origins and destinations than when one or both are concentrated, like the Manhattan CBD. Saying that transit is faster than driving to Manhattan is a weak rebuttal to @flakker:disqus and @reasonableexplanations:disqus saying that autos often offer a speed advantage over transit, you’re picking the ideal case for transit, not the typical one.

  • reasonableexplanation

    Like I said, I don’t do cardio at the gym. I could run to park slope too you know, but again, getting there sweaty is not part of my MO.

    “riding the bike definitely less time than driving even in your niche example”

    Less time? Niche? Intra-boro travel along well served rail and bike infrastructure is not niche. I’m not using staten island as an example dude.

    To reiterate:

    Via car; 15-20min consistently.
    Via bike: 35min consistently.

  • reasonableexplanation

    Easy:
    https://www.google.com/maps/dir/40.6057767,-73.9612001/40.6672691,-73.9875957/@40.6367223,-74.026307,13z/data=!3m1!4b1!4m2!4m1!3e0

    Google estimates 16-20min (at 9am this morning). Ocean parkway has green waves during some parts of the day (and so does 8th ave); at which point I handily beat the 16min expectation. The only time I go over the 20min expectation is when there’s an accident or some other anomaly.

  • Alexander Vucelic

    add some Portion of Gym time to the Drive. 🙂

    also If you are getting sweaty Riding a bike, then you Might consider Riding the bike more often 🙂

  • reasonableexplanation

    You’re not making any sense.

  • AnoNYC

    Thought you meant 5th Ave in Manhattan. That trip I can see happening.

  • AnoNYC

    Correct on stats. But in regards to NYC, most trips are very short. I think although mass transportation may not be as competitive as a private auto in regards to travel to time to destination, a bicycle sure might.

    You know I recently bought an eBike (I now think I own every mode of surface transit: bike, ebike, moto, car, metrocard) and i’m blown away how fast it can get me around during the day, especially for trips less than 5 miles. Bought it to avoid excess sweating during the summer. My daily commute is about 8 miles, so a bit longer than most. Definitely the fastest mode for getting to the core of the city, even with a top speed of 18.5 MPH unassisted.