The ongoing saga that is our campaign to reduce the speed on Miami’s busiest pedestrian street, Brickell Avenue, brought us to a Public Meeting hosted by FDOT last night. I wrote about its implication for bicyclists and everyone else on TransitMiami.com; read the post here.
In sum, here is what we are doing at the Coalition to respond as of this afternoon.
SHARE THE ROAD: We continue to ask FDOT to add installation of Ride Right/Drive Right signs to their project. In addition, we think they should put temporary ‘Share the Road’ signs up on street barricades, too. We put in a formal request and will keep you updated.
MEDIA: We’ve spoken to The Miami Herald and hope to see coverage soon.
SPEED LIMIT: It will be reduced to 25MPH for the duration of the project. Our coalition of partners asking to reduce it permanently to 25MPH includes such diverse parties as Mayor Regalado, the Brickell Area Association and the University of Miami BikeSafe Program representative (also a Brickell resident).
Shared Use Lane Markings/ SHARROWS: We aim to reduce the speed first but this remains a priority.
CROSSWALKS: We are thrilled that FDOT is letting the DDA put in more but the FDOT needs to educate themselves on possibly raising these crosswalks so that they are even more effective. We should not have to do this but so we are. Read more here.
It seems that as long as Brickell Avenue is known as Highway US-1, there will always be a conflict between those who want a safe, clean street for people who walk, bicycle and/or drive and those who feel compelled to the single rote reply: “We can’t, that’s not up to standard.” I can’t understand why they are so adverse to thinking outside their box, of reaching out to their colleagues within the US for the data they need to support better street design. This is an almost daily party of my job with the Bike Coalition. Still, their mission statement reminds us that You are the Boss of FDOT. Write to them, call them and demand that they stay true to their mission to ”provide a safe transportation system that ensures the mobility of people and goods, enhances economic prosperity and preserves the quality of our environment and communities.
The New MiamiDDA designed and funded Brickell Avenue crosswalks
” Then write to them and call them again. FDOT is a behemoth, but the people within the system are people, too. And sometimes, even they have to cross the street.
- For additional questions or if you have comments you would like on the record (support better signs than Share the Road and an effective speed limit!), please contact Heather Leslie at 305.499.2391 or Heather.Leslie@dot.state.fl.us.
BIG SHOUT OUT to all the Bike Coalition members and friends who came out last night. If you weren’t there, please call Heather at the number above and let her know you are just another bicyclist who cares for safety on Brickell Avenue.
The South Florida Bike Coalition has officially partnered with Team zMotion and Zimmerman Advertising to bring their Ride Right/Drive Right campaign to every screen, posterboard and speaker in the region. So, what’s this campaign all about?
Ride Right/Drive Right promotes safe, civil use of the road by all drivers, whether they travel by bicycle or car. Currently, it focuses on educating people on ‘the 3foot law‘ and cyclists’ rights to the road. SFBC members and people who bicycle, well, everywhere, know that a safe, legal passing distance between cars and bicycles makes for a better trip for all road users. It’s a simple, common sense practice that almost all motorists do follow. However, those who break this law all too often cause collisions and that is one of the most critical things this campaign is trying to prevent.
Thanks to a grant from zMotion, much of SFBC’s work in May will be directed to partnering with local tv and radio stations, health centers, driver’s education classes and municipal governments to bring zMotion’s Ride Right/Drive Right campaign to your eyes and ears. You can watch and share the PSA HERE. If you know someone who might be able to get these Public Service Advertisements on the air, please contact us at 305.982.7343 or SFBikeCoalition@yahoo.com. Thank you!
The Ride Right/Drive Right Campaign is among SFBC’s top priorities. Fundamentally, it’s about educating both cyclists and motorists to make our roads safer for everyone. The campaign was created by our friends at Zimmerman Advertising and HERE you can watch the PSA that we are working on getting into local schools, driver’s education courses, public access stations and public televisions across the region.
We are happy to have many partners in this effort, among them the Boca Raton Bicycle Club. We’d like to thank them for reaching out to Eric Stern, Administrator of all Drivers Education programs at the School District of Palm Beach County. The BRBC’s Safety Officer, Lew Lepene, is working hand in hand with the School District to develop additional print materials “to complement the videos and to evaluate the learning of the students.”
Are you a member of a local bicycle club? How important is safety to your group? Do you ride safely and legally? We’d love to hear your thoughts. Please leave a comment below or email us directly at SFBikeCoalition at yahoo dot com.