A couple Fridays ago, Joe Linton attempted to make sense of a couple documents we’d put up on the web summarizing bikeway mileage the City has implemented since Mayor Villaraigosa took office. Now that we’ve had some time to thoroughly evaluate Joe’s work, its time to respond.
First of all, I’d like to thank Joe for taking the time to look through the spreadsheets we’d posted. He definitely found some errors that have helped us flag a few crucial issues in our reporting that were in need of some correcting.
To solve these issues, we’ve done a few things: 1) We’ve separated out bike lane mileage implemented from July 2005 to June 2010 from bikeway mileage implemented last fiscal year (the two spreadsheets we posted previously had overlapping information, we now have two new spreadsheets that we’ll also explain), 2) We’ve clarified in our accounting the difference between a new bike lane project and a bike lane redesign (more on this shortly), and 3) We’ve clarified the difference between a project having its design complete and its installation complete. Additionally, we’ve also corrected a few mileage errors that Joe helped flag. Before we get to the results, some explanation on how and why our spreadsheets were off is due.
How can we have miscounted? When we were asked to compile how many new bikeways have been implemented since July 2005, we began with a spreadsheet of design projects that our bikeway engineering group has worked on. But the spreadsheet we posted wasn’t the best spreadsheet to use to track actual bike lane mileage for a few reasons:
- Project design mileage can be very different from actual bike lane miles installed because design work must often go beyond the intersection limits of a bike lane project. (The approach to a bike lane from the side of an intersection without a bike lane will often require some reconfiguration to help the transition to a bike lane corridor happen safely.) So we’ve remeasured and corrected all the projects that were effected by this difference.
- A bike lane project, in nearly all cases, is installed only some months after a bike lane project has been signed off as a design, and is only complete when all signs and striping have been field checked and verified as correct (some time after you first see thermoplastic lines on the street).
- Some design projects remain in the queue longer for any number of reasons. These have been removed from the updated spreadsheets.
- And lastly, some projects replaced existing striping with a more modern design (such as those on Anaheim St. that Joe pointed out). These have been moved to a separate column. These are important projects, but shouldn’t be included with the new bikeway mileage totals.
The revised results?
16.42 15.88 miles of new bike lanes were installed from July 2005 through June 2010 while 6.22 11.09 miles of bike lanes were redesigned and brought up to a modern standard. Last fiscal year (July 2010 through June 2011), 29.57 miles of new bikeways and bikeway treatments were installed (19.09 miles of bike lanes and 2.46 miles of bike path; 8.02 miles of streets received sharrows).