White Knuckles in the Bike Lane

Man, just 10 seconds of that video is all it takes to send me into a panic fit.  Let's hope the city moves forward with SF Bike Coalition's Connecting the City project soon, because their plan seems far more sensible than the mess we have now.

Comments (44)

those center lanes won’t work. bike coalition don’t know.

and keep your eight year old outta the street.

First. 4:30 am posting. wow.

The youtube title is too suggestive of the continuing cars vs. bikes fight.

But the better framing is here, how can the traffic lanes be divided and striped to be more efficient.

EDIT safer and efficient

I think the traffic could learn the traffic rules better.
Also the narrowing of Valencia I don’t think helped.

Radical idea… make valencia and mission one way streets in opposite directions. Mind blown.

No thanks, the city can keep Oak and Fell where they are now.

Major doubts about wanting the streets changed to one way streets, . But if there was a one way on different streets, my pairing would be Mission and South Van Ness.

Leave Valencia out of it.

Not a radical idea, a tried and worn out idea. One-way streets are not livable, lead to speeding.

It only leads to speeding if cars are allowed to speed. A stop sign at each intersection solves that problem.

Radical? How about center bi-directional separated bike lanes, then woonerf the remaining lanes on Valencia. Bikes are now the fastest moving things on the street, no one drives on it except to make deliveries or drop offs, etc.

Over on Mission, make the center two lanes transit-only, install some BRT, get rid of parking where needed around the BRT stops.

That’s radical. And hopefully reality at some point.

Putting the bike lanes in the middle means we’re effectively adding the “no stopping” stopping lane back to the middle of Valencia.

If the goal is to prevent cars from entering the bike lane, a curb and/or grade separation seems like the only effective solution.

Yup. Anyone with any sense recognizes that physically separated bike lanes are the only really safe and effective option.

If the bikes are in the middle, it’s insane, making right and left turns both dangerous. If it’s between the parking lane and the sidewalk, you just get doored from the other side and have to veer around pedestrians leaving their cars. So how would a separated bike line work? I think I’d prefer stunt-rolling over the hood of any car that cuts me off, just for “raising awareness”.

I’d personally like to see how the center lane plays out before writing it off. Left turns seem like they would become less dangerous, and you can easily merge into traffic to take a right. The real issue here seems like cars that need to take a left potentially blocking the lane to turn.

Regardless, it’ll strikes me as significantly less likely for a driver to “not see” a cyclist whom they pass on their left than the cyclist that blends into the noise of the curb.

Has this been tried in other cities?

How about an example in a City that functions? Joking, kinda

They have a similar setup in the East Village. I’ve ridden it… it works.

The only major difference with theirs is a green median seperates the two bike lanes, giving cyclists space to wait for turns without blocking the bike lanes.

the would probably remove left turns on any street that had this bike lane to ease traffic.

Exactly! If you were to make a left or right turn from a center bike lane there is a good chance you’re going to have to stop first. Where do the bicycles stop and wait until there is a gap in traffic without blocking the bikes behind them? Clusterfuck!

The Bike Coalition wants to turn city cycling into one big lazy promenade so everyone can hold hands and ride together. It’s not feasible and it’s not efficient.

I agree with Brillo!

Get rid of the parking, QED.

I don’t know that second car, the one that looks like a refrigerator box on wheels, seemed fine- it signaled, and then moved over. I’ve experienced way worse than that and not made a video about it. Cars are always going to enter bike lanes, hit pedestrians, hit each other, hit buildings… you can’t paint (or legislate) your way around that. We just all need to be more defensive and aware.

Actually you can paint and legislate around that. That’s the point of local government, to set parameters that make us safer, instead of giving up.

Though I agree, the video’s whiny. I’m sure cyclists could upload more compelling grievances.

I had to check the license plate to make sure that wasn’t my camo green Scion xb!

These are pretty tame. Just like cars, bikes occasionally will have to change their speed when someone changes lanes in front of them.

Safest thing would be to get rid of that lane and put the bikes in with the cars so no one has to do any unnecessary merging.

Mao Zedong opined that “the only real defense is active defense”

Step 1. Copy content directly from the San Francisco subreddit
Step 2. Neglect to credit the original author
Step 3. Repeat
Step 4. Profit?!?


It is a public video on youtube, which they link to.

Uhhhh, you know there’s a lot more to the internet than Reddit, right? I happened to see this on Facebook, and it’s generally poor practice to link to someone’s FB page for a whole litany of reasons.

Besides, that subreddit is complete garbage. Unless you like looking at the same tired photos of fog and tired memes about parking, you’d have to have brain damage to read it regularly.

Bike lanes in the center of the street seem problematic to me. Many drivers don’t look at their right mirror/blind spot when they turn right. But, ZERO drivers look at their left mirror or at their left blind spot when turning left. Setting it up that way seems like you are expecting a lot of behavior change from drivers who can’t even figure out how to deal with bike lanes on the right. It might work if you make it no left turn everywhere?

I like the idea of making Valencia and Mission one way, but do it with only 1 vehicle lane. The rest of the street becomes sidewalk and bike lane and parklets.

I like the idea of making Valencia and Mission one way, but do it with only 1 vehicle lane. The rest of the street becomes sidewalk and bike lane and parklets.

That sounds great to me, but it would never fly. Mission has two lanes going each way and Valencia has one, so you’re talking about removing a total of 4 car lanes. Neighbors would no doubt complain that this configuration would push more cars onto South Van Ness and Guerrero.

Ya, no doubt that would almost never happen. A man can dream can’t he?

Isn’t there enough space to have two lanes for cars and one lane for sidewalk/bikes? There are currently three lanes on Valencia, if you count the middle turning lane.

I think this is a great idea. Bike traffic could be in both directions in a segregated (physically) lane.

• Most road users don’t know the proper way for a car to make a right turn when there’s a bike lane. Part 1 is a turn signal 100 feet before merging into the bike lane. Part 2 is only to merge when it’s safe to do so. (If executed properly, bikes may pass on the left at this point.) Part 3 involves another turn signal for the actual right turn.

I have never see #1 done on the streets of San Francisco. #3 happens about half the time (bike lane or no bike lane). Most motorists attempt #2, but as this video shows, far too many do not,

I ride a motorcycle and drive a car. On a motorcycle it’s a lot easier to deal with cars driving like total shitheads than a bike because you can get in and out spots a lot quicker. When I am in a car and I’m driving down valencia, it’s nearly impossible to make a right turn ever because cyclists have that precious momentum they don’t want to give up so I’ll never get a yield from them under any circumstances. On the wiggle in the morning I just assume that no cyclist will ever stop for a stop sign and that it’s always a two way stop and that I have to yield for all cyclists. This is really fucking annoying.

“so I’ll never get a yield from them under any circumstances”

Yep, which by law is how it should be. You are crossing a lane of traffic. As a motorist it is your obligation to yield to the cyclist(s) in the lane and then merge for your turn.

Do you cut across three lanes of traffic on the freeway because everyone to your right is obligated to yield? No, well maybe you do because you can “get in and out of spots a lot quicker”.

I don’t give a shit about momentum, but I do care about my safety on a bike. Your flawed perspective on yielding is translates directly into the barging seen in the video.Your inability to wait as obliged by law is your problem not the cyclist’s and his/her “precious momentum”.

Going out on a limb, but I would be willing to bet you are also one of those types who drives their motorcycle down a bike lane as well, right?

TL;DR: You come across as an entitled aggressively driving twit who expects to wait for no one by forcing others to yield to you.

You are not speaking for most. This is a be careful what you ask for trap. Do we really want the police stopping bicycles for every traffic infraction. I don’t think so. We should be open to adjusting the lines and rules in ways that make travel safer, more ecological and efficient.

I want that. I also want cars stopped for every traffic infraction. And motorcycles. And even pedestrians.

“On the wiggle in the morning I just assume that no cyclist will ever stop for a stop sign and that it’s always a two way stop and that I have to yield for all cyclists. This is really fucking annoying.” So I’m entitled because I want bikes to stop at stop signs like they’re suppose to?

I don’t take a right turn with bikes behind me, at all. Like I said, I drive defensively enough to just assume that cyclists will ride JUST as retarded as the cars that turn into them in the bike lane.

I’ve had both of my mirrors taken out by cycles who were lane splitting at all costs and close lining them selves on my parked car. To which I responded very peacefully and understandingly.

You come across as a typical entitled piece of shit and I’m positive you are one.

parked car - While I was in it, at a stop light.

J: Yup. You are absolutely correct.

I am just bored and throwing out alternative ideas. I think center bike lanes might work if left turning is removed, the center lane is physical barrier, and parallel parking is replaced with 45 degree parking on one side of the street (no parking on the other side) to reduce time drivers are stuck behind other drivers trying to parallel park.