01 October 2016

Another Cyclist killed on Ramon Road

I note with dismay that another cyclist on Ramon Road has died after being hit by a motorist. The Desert Sun reports, "At 4:48 a.m., officers responded to East Ramon Road west of Paseo Dorotea, where a semi truck traveling eastbound had hit a bicyclist. Upon further investigation, authorities found that the bicyclist, traveling northbound, had attempted to cross the eastbound lanes of Ramon Road when the truck crashed into the cyclist[, who] died at the scene."

Our Coachella Valley cities and transportation planners have to answer us: why is it that only six east-west corridors are available to all traffic, especially endangering pursuers of active transportation (cycling, running, walking, and low-speed electric vehicles)? —Subliminally at least, all vehicle operators recognize those few east-west corridors:
  • West Coachella Valley
    In the west valley are, from south to north, East Palm Canyon-Highway 111, Mesquite-Dinah Shore, Ramon, and Vista Chino below Interstate 10; Varner and Dillon north of the interstate.

    NONE of these corridors have markings that suggest a "safer" riding position for bikes and other active use. ALL of these corridors allow relatively high speeds, and motorists typically surpass the speed limits without Police enforcement.

  • Central Coachella Valley
    In the central valley are more east-west corridors—and heavier, more speed-obsessed traffic: Highway 111, Fred Waring, Country Club, three streets that merge in the east (Frank Sinatra, Gerald Ford, and Dinah Shore), and Ramon below Interstate 10; both Varner and Dillon serve east-west traffic north of the interstate.

    Many of these corridors are marked with bike lanes, some with NEV markings too. ALL of these corridors allow relatively high speeds, and motorists typically surpass the speed limits with little Police enforcement.

  • East Coachella Valley
    In the east valley are the fewest east-west corridors: Airport Boulevard, Avenue 52, Avenue 50, Avenue 48-Dillon, and Highway 111 (if one dares alternate conveyance on a Business Interstate 10)

    I use these corridors little enough to make generalizations, and I welcome comments from my readers about bike lane markings and speed enforcement.

For 15 years (or more), studies of separated corridors for east-west active transport have been made and been ignored. As CV Link nears its first construction in Cathedral City, we still have years to await completion of any significant, contiguous alternate to the motorist-focused corridors. That completion will benefit us all: cyclists, pedestrians, and low-speed electric vehicles will have a safer, dedicated path; motorists will be relieved of the frustration of caring for the low-speed and more vulnerable members of the traffic pattern.

For more reasons behind my support of CV Link, read http://bike-commute.blogspot.c...

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