ride's picture

Cyclists dismount - NOT


This sign was seen along the airport pathway at a point where it crosses a service road. Cyclists are supposed to dismount and walk across the roadway? Some Parks employee probably thinks this is providing a measure of safety for cyclists, but is in fact endangering cyclists. Bicycles are considered to be vehicles in Alberta, and their operators are subject to all the rights of other other vehicles operators, and all the responsibilities. So, instructing cyclists to stop at this intersection is fair ball. But asking them to dismount in order to cross the intersection violates provincial law, and encourages motorists to think of bicycles and their operators as inferior targets of discrimination. In this regard, Parks is not only violating provincial law, but encouraging dangerous and wrong-headed thinking by motorists. If this sign is valid, then I guess we can soon expect to see signs at intersections in town that say the following: "Motorists disembark; push vehicle across intersection". NOT!

Forums: 

jkraus's picture

dismounting cyclists

There is the same sign on 11th or 12th Ave SW crossing 11th St SW - and another one by the marina at the Glenmore Reservoir. The City of Calgary ignores international traffic signs in order to favour vehicles at the expense of the weaker members of the traffic chain [pedestrians and cyclists]. Calgary is also the only city I am aware of that disallows crossing streets at selected so-called "crosswalks" [for non-North-Americans: intersection between two streets. In the rest of the world, it is legal to cross a street anywhere, that is, also away from so-called crosswalks. Hence, there, a word like "crosswalk" does not exist]. Several of these "Use next crosswalk" signs (supported by blocking guardrails) are frequently in a row, so that (a) the message conveyed on each sign is not true because (b)one has to cumulatively run up several blocks in order to legally cross the road. However, who, in a society, which needs an SUV to move their ever expanding buttocks to the letterbox at the end of the block is going to do that? Go figure!

Bottom line: the approach of the city towards pedestrians, cyclists, and vehiclists is inconsistent. The city possibly tries to please the rural attitude of much of the population [an alarmingly large part of which needs plump desert-war vehicles to master the "urban jungle"] or tries to manage the need to travel far owing to the urban sprawl.

I wonder how much the fine for "not dismounting" is. My only ever ticket was $60 for ignoring the sign "Do not jaywalk"...I simply did not know what that meant...and it had rather sounded like a recommendation to me anyway.

Jurgen Kraus

mikewarren's picture

"traffic control device"

I think these fall under a general "failure to follow a traffic-control-device" (aka "sign"). So it doesn't matter what the sign says or if there are other, blanket laws -- you can get a ticket for not following the sign.

Now, if there just *didn't happen to be* the "cyclists dismount" sign on the post, you're correct that there's (AFAIK) not any blanket thing about this in the pathways bylaw (nor, of course, the Alberta Traffic Act which basically pretends bike-paths aren't a thing).

ivan's picture

I guess you are prerfection

In Alberta a cycle that is not being walked is considered a vehicle when an accident investigation is done. I think you are fooling your self about your arguenents. 

You man not have to dismount but you should come to complete stop. 

Did you know that the Calgary International Airport is it own juristiciton and only has to follow Federal regulation. It does not sound like it. So it is their road/path and if it becomes too much of problem they can can close access to all and quite honestly do not even have to listen to your objections. 

So if there is road constuction and detour for motorist I have a feeling that you just ride through because of your holier than thou that drive attitude. 

Also I bet you did not know that according to City Bylaw those white bollesters with the red horizontal stripes denote the end of a pathway and the start of sidewalk. The law also says you as a cyclsit are to stop before preceeding to cross the side walk, you do not have to dismount but you do have stop. When whas the last time you did this?

Not sure where you got your info on crosswalks but when you come off a path on to a "highway" (any city street under the traffic act) you have to stop. If there is stop sign for the traffic on the highway you have wait for it to be safe as that stop sign means they have to stop for traffic already on the highway and you are on the sidewalk (not on the highway). It is viewed the same as entering a street(highway) from an alley or parking lot.  

 

If you are one of those people that ride up to the pedestian crosswalk light and hit the button and just cross because traffic now has to stop for you, well guess what they do not have to stop as you are not a pedestrian (yes even if you have a foot on the ground you are not pedestrian if you are on your bike)  Althought there is nothing illegal about activating the light you do not have any rights to enter the road if it unsafe. Just like a stop sign or alley or a parking lot. In fact those vehicle that stop for you are guilty of impeding traffic. 

I treat bicycles like vehicles I expect them to follow the rules or the road. So if you are entering  from a pathway I expect you to stop and make sure it safe you to proceed. I expect you to stop at stop signs, and red lights. I expect you ride on the correct side of the road, I expect you not to impeed traffic. But for some reason I think this would be expecting a lot from you. 

Please think about this the next time you fly off a pathway at intersecttion particularly those with the dedicated right hand turns as I am expecting you to stop before entering and I would hate to meet you there as I do not believe it would be a good thing. 

 

PS, You may not like the "Cyclist Must Dismount" signs but if they are in black lettering on white they are enforceable under both City Bylaws and the Traffic Safety Act. 

CPat's picture

"...I treat bicycles like

"...I treat bicycles like vehicles... I expect you not to impeed traffic. ..."

 

So if bicycles are vehicles, don't they have the same right of the road as any other user and the onus is on other users, like motorists, to pass only when safe?  Please take a Urban Cycling Skills Course with Bike Calgary next spring.

 

Your tone is really offputting.  I especially like the bullying attitude and slippery slope argument you use to rationalize hitting someone with your vehicle in a channelized right hand turn.

ivan's picture

NO justification required, consequences suck

If you fail to stop when you drive out of parking lot and get hit who is at fault. Same rule applies.  If you stop and proceed when safe as the law dictates we we shall never meet. If you stop and get off the bike and are now an obvious pedestrian I will stop and again we shall never meet but follow the laws and use the environemtal advantage as a justification to not follow the rules an laws well I suspect you shall meet some vehicile on your journeys as you can not leave it up the motorist to guess what rules you will or will not follow. 

As  vehicle and comming off the channelized right turn you are not on the highway you can not enter till safe. Yes there is "pecdertian crosswalk " but you are not a pedestrion till both feet are on the same side of the bike. and it is not and pathway extension unless marked as such.   Here is fact that you will hate because it is not your advantage. That is even if there was a yield sign or stop sign there  you still have to wait till ist is safe. Those signs apply to those that are on the highway you have not entered yet and must wait till it is safe to do so. (luckily most Calgary motorist have been trained to behave the way you want)

 

The fact that you consider that hitting some one who basically  "run a stop sign" is not justified is somewhat correct but when some is looking to the left to merge and you feel that you have the right of way and ride in front or them is just plain stupidity and unlawfull.  If I come out a parking lot in the middle of the block and hit a vehicle or cyclist by your logic I am in the right. If that happened to you I think you would have a differnt view. IF you are stoping then there will never be a problem. But somehow you seemed to have read a differnt set or rules or are by divine right been given lattitude to interpet them differnt and there in lies the big problem. 

There is no argument to be had with someone whoes radiclal views are such that they out weight and justify any and all thier actions. I do say all motorist are correct. I do say that when you follow a diffent set of rules than all others you have to expect consequences. IF you think that you on your bicycle are imune from consequeces I feel for you loved ones. 

I also get pissed at drivers that drive in the bike lanes. Oh and by the way they are singel file and you can not pass the slow cyclist either not can you cross the solid white line, 1 with out signalling, 2. leaving the road  but then you would never do that because they are cyclist and follow the same rules as you. 

I also do not like motorist that run red lights, fail to signal either. but if they are car pooling is that enough environmental reduction for them get in your rule book?

Think about the big picturne and not your justifed little world and everything will fine if you can not do that and feel that you do not need to stop where required I suspect that some day we will meet. Not by choice but by the laws of physics which always apply and are never over written by environmentl stewardship. I follow the rules and if you are on ther "highway" (andy city street) and not a pathway (not covered by traffic act)  I expect any body on that highway cyclist or motorist to follow the same rules is that such a hard concept for you?

 

As for "bullying" it is a  term I see used alot by Millenials and toddlers who are not getting their way. Just because it is not they way you want it to be does not make it wrong. 

Crivak's picture

I've been riding year round

I've been riding year round for 4+ years now and have seen my fair share of cyclists disobeying traffic laws but I have never seen anyone cut off a car coming off a pathway system.  See how anecdotal data is not useful? I agree with CPat on this one. Please take a Urban Cycling Skills Course with Bike Calgary next spring. The pathway "stop" thing is new too, so not relevant when this post was made in 2006. 

edit; on a slightly unrelated note, do you know how one could help expand the reach of these urban cycling courses? 

 

BeerBellyBachelorBicycleBoy's picture

"Motorists disembark; push vehicle across intersection"

Absolutely right! A cyclist has to disembark and walk his bike across? This is somewhat ridiculous. It demonstrates clearly a bias towards the value of owning a car. WHILE: A car creates more CO2 and burns much needed Oxygen. Cycling is more healthy and reduces the spiraling costs of healthcare on a continent where hearth disease is the number one killer.

I would suggest that the cars stops. The driver and passenger run at least one loop around their car (clockwise), then get back in and drive trough the intersection after all pedestrians and cyclists are gone (Pushing the car trough the intersection would be dangerous on slopes).
How ridiculous does that sound? Almost as ridiculous as that traffic sign looks. Almost, but not quite. But then it was probably designed by a car-driver and not a cyclist.

jkraus's picture

Car drivers and cyclists

Vehicle [I try to avoid the term car, as many vehicles in this province are monstrous] drivers and cyclists are not necessarily mutually exclusive. Example: watch all the monster trucks at Edworthy park that host commuter bikes for downtown workers.

ivan's picture

Justification to avoid the rules.

 Beerbelly while you may not like the cyclist disembark signs I suspect it comes from cyclist refusing to stop. In case you have never thought about it once you are off you bike (booth feet on the same side cycle) you are pedestian and now mororist have to stop for you. 

Here is a little clarifcation. If you are on a pathway you are not on a "highway" it governed by the City of Calgary Bylaws. This means if you are on a pathway and disobey a sign it can be enforced. The Traffic Act and the Rules of the Road are not enfocable on a pathway because it is not a "Highway" but under the Municipal Goverment Act the City of Calgary has complete authority to create and enforce any Bylaw they wish. A Highway under the Traffic act applies to any area "normally available to vehicles" so the drive though at Tim Hortons is fair game,as is your driveway if it is not gated but not City Pathways. 

The same that applies for those cyclist that put a foot down and say they are pedestrian. Does a motorcycle rider become a pedestrian when they are stoped with thier feet on the ground? Can I stick my foot out my car door (a somewhat dangerous thing to do) and now be considered a pedestrian? I suspect not. 

The saving the enviroment arguement is absolultley hillarious to me. Yes you do not consume fuel on a daily basis. Good for you. But there is energy consumed to mine and trasport and manufacture you bike. Sorry to break it to you the same goes for your tires. So yes you are cutting your carbon footprint but that does not give you the right to disobey lawful signs. 

2wheeler's picture

statute of limitations for internet reply?

Just a little more than a decade late to the game Ivan... but no worries. We all appreciate your keen understanding of the law, the creative juxtapositions, and your peculiar ways express them!  You've been away for so long, what brings you back?

 

Does anyone know where the sarcasm emoji is?

DarrenB's picture

Emojis?

Unfortunately, this forum software is even older than the posts Ivan has responded to. So certainly no sarcasm emojis.

Wink

DarrenB's picture

Please stop

Ivan, please stop with your broad generalizations and personal attacks. They are unwarranted and unwanted here. If  you can't engage in respectful conversation, I can't imagine how you will be compelling in your arguments to other users, at the very least.

ivan's picture

near misses that should have never happened,

I commute through downtown and out on to east bound Memorial and ext a the zoo over pass, Well the ciy is working on the pathway and has one lane closed and has 8 ft high construciton fence on the south side of a single narrow lane and guard rail and hill on the north side. The sidewalk and path way is closes so only one single lane of east bound traffic can go through. Well several times I have been driving into the sun and on this east bound ramp and met cyclist west bound on it. It is like tring to avoid a bull in a cattle shute. I do not understand what motivated people to feel that violating the law in this way to put them selves in almose iminment danger is acceptable by any standard. 

I missed the date on the one,I gues just was befuddled by the logic of the poster. If everybody plays by the same rules alot of this would not be an issue but it now a case of pot calling the kettle black. I am just tired of having my vehicle kicked, hit and spit on because I diid not behave they way the cyclist "believes"  I should have. Which if I had would have put me in violation of the law. So far the city has not put any resources toward enforcement of cyclist on the new infrastructure so it freefrall for those cyclist that are training motorist to behave the way they want. CPS has no way to enforce and road rage incidents by them more agressive cyclist so it is matter of time before thing get worse  rather than better. It is currently a bunch of bullies hitting vehilces that do not what they want( which is a chargeable offence under the Traffic Safety Act but in Canada we are not allowed to protect our property and police either do not have resources or can not be bothered to protect my property for me so I am unsure how even deal with those aggressive cyclist that seem invent there own rules and laws and then enforce them on peoples vehicles.

 

As for sarcassm I hope I do not have to get out a channelized turn and say I told you so but that is where the current state of behvaiour is going get some poor soul.  As for the law stuff I have read the whole act, and rules of the road have you? I also am occasionally apply it and it written in plain english so anyone that reads it can understand so I am stupified by the interpretions that I read on here. Just saying.

 

winterrider's picture

If you have multiple

If you have multiple independent people on bicycles that feel the need to hit, spit and kick your car, I find it hard to beleive that this is all due to raging cyclists.
You're almost certainly driving in a way that they feel intentionally put their lives in danger. 

I've got you pegged in my head as a bully behind the wheel as I can't imagine how you could multiple times be inspiring such extreme behaviour any other way.

Stop trying to intimidate people with your car and you'll be fine.

yycfoldingcycle's picture

Definition of dismount

A few years ago I read the definition of walking a bicycle (re: ctrain stations) was being beside the bike and not pedaling. So one foot on the pedal and pushing with the other foot fits. Have done this in front of cops through crosswalks and had no complaints.
Drivers get very impatient if you walk across but more will tolerate letting people bike across because its faster. Becareful though of right turn drivers who won't stop for anyone.

Tags: 

ivan's picture

Definition

That may be good for the pathways but not for the Traffic Act. So on street you are still  a vehicle and vehicles do not have to stop. But your are welcome to give that reason in court. I have seen 14 cars go through a red light in front of cop with no problems so does that mean it is acceptable to now run a red light. Think a little. If I turned right and had a collision and you were doing the one foot thing just like a motorcycle has to do when it stops. Well I am pretty sure you are in the wrong and would have to pay for the damages to my vehicle. I know it sucks and it is not way you think it "should" be but it is the reality. I hope it does not happen but way cycleits come acroos dedicated right hand turn lanes with out stoppin I am trully surprised it does not happen more. 

pleszczynski's picture

Crossing

The whole argument should boil down to safety. Arguments on the environmental, financial, health, etc benefits are welcome elsewhere, but why would they have any bearing on the specifics of a crosswalk?

 

The whole idea around dismounting for a crosswalk is this: When a motor vehicle approaches a crosswalk, they have to scan the entirety of the crosswalk, as well as the immediate area of the sidewalk intersecting the crosswalk on either side, in order to make a decision of whether it is truly empty and safe to drive through, or if they must come to a stop.

The idea of a cyclist dismounting is simply that the speed of a cyclist will suddenly match closely to that of an average pedestrian. This makes us predictable. If there is any word of the utmost importance when it comes to traffic of all types, I would argue that it is predictability.

 

With that in mind, consider that when many cyclists can make sudden and sharp turns at high speeds, be able to deaccelerate and accelerate much quicker than pedestrians, and are often blowing stop signs, red lights, going on crosswalks, etc, this creates a pattern of unpredictability.

I think it's clear, and i think it's fair, to say that variable and high speed crossing at a crosswalk (Controlled or uncontrolled) can be dangerous.

 

 

However i'd also like to point out that from every source i've seen, biking across a crosswalk in Calgary is not illegal, however you forfeit any right of way/insurance claim by doing so.

 

Lastly, what has never been made clear to me, is any argument for why it's so important that Bikes be allowed to bend rules of crosswalks, stop signs, red lights, as they please.

 

Today I absolutely saw a white male cyclist with a child in a carrier (Rear seatpost/rack mounted, not a trailer of any kind), stop at a red bike light, northbound on 5th st SW at 10th Ave SW, wait a few seconds, look both ways, and then blow the light blatantly when he (presumably) saw no car traffic from either direction.

What makes this man's decision OK? Why is it that when we don't hide behind an Insurance paper, license plate, driver's license and $25k of aluminum, we decide that we're better than the law?

I love cycling, for commuting, for road biking, for CX, etc. I want more pathways, i want more users, i want more facilities.

However i'm shocked at how little regard we have for our own and other's safety, and how we're quick to use arguments of convenience over those of safety when addressing big issues. I'd be laughed out of a city council meeting if I took any of the above as an argument why cyclists should be able to cross crosswalks without stopping.

-Feeling Frustrated, sorry about the rant

 

 

 

DarrenB's picture

People are people

I am certainly not defending cyclists who disobey the rules of the road, but let's not pick on just the cyclists either, please: ALL types of people who use roads include those who disobey the law. Every day I see motorists who fail to stop at red lights or stop signs, and every day I see pedestrians who disobey the "don't walk" signal at lighted intersections and cross against the light anyways. Yeah, some cyclists break the rules, but lots don't. Why is it that cyclists are held to the higher standard of the law (by other cyclists, no less)? People are people - there are always going to be cyclists who break the law, just like motorists and pedestrians who are often just accepted as normal. Let's not be too hard on ourselves.

SuperSlow's picture

\what makes it ok?

Your words "The whole argument should boil down to safety."

 

So what makes it ok? It was safe for himself and anyone else involved. Had a police officer seen him he would have gotten a ticket, the same as any other vehicle who do this or similar things all day, every day sometimes with deadly consquences. Had this person misjudged this light and put himselfs in harms way he would have been responsible for all damages (which would likely have been minor except for himself). 

pleszczynski's picture

Not safe

By taking part in traffic and intersections, we implicitly consent to the law of and guidelines surrounding traffic and intersections.

The law has told us running red lights is illegal because it is not safe.

 

Had he misjuged, he would put himself, the child on his bike, and potentially the vehicle and/or surrounding pedestrians and cyclists at risk, should a motor vehicle choose to swerve to avoid him - which most would do.

 

This is not minor, this is not safe, this is not OK.

 

Probably my more contentious point is that i think this line of thought is similar to the line of thought when cyclists run stops, reds, cycle through crosswalks etc.

I'm not above the law, and neither should any cyclist be. If you have an issue with the law, i suggest taking it up with City Council, get a petition going, email your local counsellor. But until that point in time, don't expect sympathy from me when running reds.

 

 

SuperSlow's picture

Black and White

Nothing bad has ever come out of black and white thinking...

It is 100% safe to run red lights at certain times (or at least as safe as going on a green, someone may still hit you). The law says that running red lights is illegal but it doesn't say why. And had that person been hit, I would still be sympathetic. Accidents always happen, and sympathy for a human life is almost always something I will have. Had the person just lost their job, or was in economic dire straits, I would even feel sympathy for getting ticket for doing something that amounts to nothing more than jaywalking. 

Be safe first, follow the rules second. The rules/laws will not always ensure your and others safety. Think pathway or road speed limits.

 

 

Next's picture

Exactelt SuperSlow,

Exactelt SuperSlow,

radiculous , out of touch regulations are corrected by riders everyday on my way to work.

black and white thinking - well said.

imagine no car in sight up to 1 km and I suppose to press that button?  

Also dont forget location of those buttons, you have to enter muddy puddles to press that button, come very close to trafic/button located facing street!!!/ how convinient it is?  I am sure lots of riders do not press , because simply they dont want to ride into mud .

 

ivan's picture

SuperSlow great self description

SuperSlow all I can say is WTF.  Do you do that in car when driving?  Do you have driver license? You are the reason motorist in Calgary have a hard time respecting Cyclists. I guess the rules apply to everybody but you. I would not sell  you life insurance.

birchy's picture

IMO just about everyone has

IMO just about everyone has the ability to come to a crosswalk/stop sign/red light, whatever it may be, and choose for themselves whether it's SAFE to proceed or not.  Stopping for the sake of stopping has nothing to do with safety.

I had this conversation with a CTrain cop one day as he was writing me and another gentleman tickets for jaywalking when we were attempting to run across and catch a train.  I told him "I can understand the ticket if I was staring down at my smartphone completely oblivious to the world around me, and walked across.  But I didn't do that.. I walked up to the edge..  made a deliberate look in both directions, saw that nothing was coming, and made the conscious decision to walk across."  He came back with "if you come to a red light in your car at 2am and there is noone around, is it legal to drive through?"  No, it's not legal, but it's definitely not UNSAFE.  I was taught when I was a CHILD to "look both ways before crossing the street".  As an adult.. I've retained that ability.  To me it's akin to photo radar setting up in a construction zone on Crowchild trail at 10 o'clock at night when there's not a soul around, taking pictures of people safely driving down the road at 80kph.

Too many people these days are quick to play the "it's the law" card without thinking about the intent of the law.  Writing tickets for the sake of writing tickets is a major pet peeve of mine.. especially when you see how much actual crime goes unnoticed/unpunished.  Just look at the number of stolen bike reports on here - vs the amount of people that actually get them back, as one small example.  

PS - I never run red lights on my bicycle.. strictly because of the perception of those who may see me do it. When I see another person do it, I always do a big ol' headshake, especially if there's another vehile sitting around me.  I'm a bit more lax at stop signs/intersections.. I tend to do the Idaho stop.

bclark's picture

Crossings

The following is what I've learned about crossings and cyclist obligations when using them.  I've tried to reference some regulations and bylaws that City staff have brought to my attention in these regards.  I can't promise accuracy...

In general, biking through a crosswalk is not prohibited under provinical traffic regulations, however, as people have pointed out when biking through a crosswalk, you do not have right-of-way and, as such, motorists have no obligation to yield to you, at least according to information provided to Bike Calgary through one of the organization's volunteers a number of years ago (http://www.bikecalgary.org/comment/39620#comment-39620).  Specific to the reply from Alberta Transportation "local road authorities may have a bylaw that prohibits cyclists from riding a bicycle in a crosswalk", there are a number of pathways in Calgary with signage indicating "cyclists must dismount to cross roadway", but this is not ubiquitous.

There's a couple things to consider as well as some relatively recent bylaw changes that play into this.  First off, riding through a crosswalk that connects two sidewalk segments.  Normally bicycles are not allowed on sidewalks, except under certain conditions.  As such, there really is no reason that one should be riding through a crosswalk connecting sidewalks.  Hold-on though, in Calgary, we have a lot of multiuse pathways that intersect roadways either relatively clearly as a pathway (think of the pathway along 32nd Avenue on the north side of the University) or not so clearly as some combination pathway, traffic island and sidewalk (think the intersection of Crowchild Trail and 24th Avenue NW).  What about these situations?  People are permitted to ride on pathways and they are permitted to ride on roadways, so does it not stand to reason that they may have an expectation of being able to ride from a pathway onto a roadway to either cross the roadway, or join onto it as part of their journey?

In 2015 the City attempted to clarify how bicycles can enter a roadway from a pathway via a bylaw change...

"20M96 41(8): A person riding a bicycle that is about to enter onto a roadway or sidewalk from a pathway must, unless the intersection is marked with a yield sign, stop the bicycle before entering the roadway or sidewalk."

I was told this was aimed at reflecting Section 91(2) of the Provincial Use of Highways and Rules of the Road Regulation, specifically;

"AR304/2002 91(2): A pedestrian shall not proceed onto a roadway or proceed along a roadway into the path of any vehicle that is so close that it is impractical for the driver of the vehicle to yield the right of way."

In order to better facilite bicycle mobility, particularly around the cycle track network, and (IMO) indirectly aknowledging that when people choose to cycle, they have an expectation of being able to travel by that mode from the start of their journey to it's end, the provision for designating a crossing as multi-use was also added;

"20M96 41.1(1) The Traffic Engineer may designate crosswalks upon which a person may ride a bicycle to cross the roadway. 

(2) Where the Traffic Engineer has designated a crosswalk pursuant to subsection (1), any crosswalk so designated shall be known as a “multi-use crossing”. The Traffic Engineer shall indicate the multi-use crossing by the placement of such traffic control devices as the Traffic Engineer deems necessary. 

(3) A person operating a vehicle on a roadway must yield the right of way to: (a) a pedestrian; and (b) a person riding a bicycle; who is crossing the roadway within a multi-use crossing. 

(4) When crossing a roadway within a multi-use crossing: (a) a pedestrian; or (b) a person riding a bicycle; has the same rights and obligations of a pedestrian using a crosswalk"

The example I was pointed to, of a multi-use crossing, is the crossing of 9th Avenue along MacLeod Trail, i.e. the multi-use designated portion of the cycle track south of the Municipal Building (see http://www.bikecalgary.org/new-pathway-intersection-markings-part-2 for a picture).

Though I don't necessarily think all aspects of this are a step forward in terms of enabling bicycle mobility and, in fact, I think it could heighten the potential for a bicycle-bicycle collision where cyclists are required to stop (not just yield), it does (and the remainder of the paragraph is my interpretation) at least clarify that I can ride through a crosswalk.  It would also seem to clarify that, at a multi-use crossing, I'd even have right-of-way, though, as with rules around pedestrians approaching a crosswalk, I should take care not to proceed unless all approaching drivers have the opportunity to yield right-of-way.

Here's one other thing to think about, and I have yet to really get clarity on this one.  A lot of pathways are crossed by driveways (including parking lot entrances) and alleys.  The above bylaw changes are not really clear on who has right-of-way at such locations, cyclists on the pathway or motorists crossing it.  The bylaw is also not clear on whether cyclists must stop as one might interpret the road as crossing the pathway, not the pathway as entering the roadway.

RichieRich's picture

Red Light running

As per above discussions it's clear that some people run red lights - sometimes resulting in close calls (or worse) and other times when there is nary another living soul in sight.  I have certainly come to some intersections and waited..and waited... through several light changes (except the one that gave me right to pass) until an actual vehicle causes the lights to change in my favor, or I choose some other way to proceed.  The lack of light change is probably because the sensors do not register my presence.  What is the expectation for handling this situation?   How do you handle the situation?

ivan's picture

Red Light Running

RichieRch,

I never thought of this situation and knowing a bit about these types of intersections I will try to give you some tips. If you know the intersection lights are set to to change when when there is vehicle present look for a couple of things. 

1. Look up to the lights facing you if there is pole with camera type thing on it and there is no vehicle (ie be safe) approach the stop line in the middle of the road again if safe if there if vehicle there then the light will be tripped to allow movement in your direction. Thes system use cameras to sense movement to trigger your traffic direction green light. 

2. If you look and see a large square crack sealed patterns at the intersection you have to have metal go over them to get the system to trigger your green light. I am not sure if there is enough metal in the average bike to trigger it. If you ride an alloy type bike, Aluminum or Magneseium frame I doubt the system will trigger it (the loops work on Ferrous metal). Your only alternative then is to hit the crosswalk light  on the pole if there is one to trigger the green light sequence. 

If the lights are automated, only set to change when triggered there should be pedestrian button for them to force the trigger. IF not I would bring it to the Citys attention. 

RichieRich's picture

Ooooold threat reborn

Ivan - interesting that this thread, born in 2006, has come back to life your interesting replies to 12yr old posts.  Certainly infrastructure has changed since the thread was started and also general attitudes too with both drivers and riders.  mostly.  

To answer - yes I am aware of the various light-trigger mechanisms used randomly and with varying degrees of success within YYC.  Some intersections have never been upgraded and I can still sit there a long time without any light changes until a vehicle comes along. Some location sensors have actually been upgraded, but not all locations.

A prime example is the light heading north out of Dalhousie LRT station on Dalhousie Drive.  Pathetically slow, thankfully vehicles do come along but there have been quite a few occasions over the last 10 years that I've given up waiting and found my way across.  Also keep in mind that when cycling on the road it's a real PIA to now scoot over to the pedestrian button - reasons include crossing turning lanes, snow/ice manouvering when rutted with laden bike (panniers), interfering with pedestrians, etc...

CPat's picture

Some intersections have

Some intersections have markings indicating where a sensor for bikes is such as 21 St NW at Kensington.  Basically a paint sripe with a small bike stencil-visible on google maps.

Others you can see the cut lines for the sensor.  It is more likely to pick you up if you are near the edge (the cut line).  If it still doesn't work, maybe you don't have enough metal in your wheels and laying the bike down over the sensor cutline will work.

Still can't then you get out of your car, and row it across the river (pedestrian button and walk/ride).

Last option if there's no pedestrian button (often in NE), I agree with Birchy above, the road is not designed for cyclists and therefore you need to be safely creative and make it work for you.  i.e. What is the intent of the intersection?  Wait for a break in traffic and just cross, or cross like you would at an unmarked intersection and start edging out slowly making eye contact until vehicles stop.  If traffic speeds are too fast to do this safely (and anyways next time if the intersection just doesn't work) use a different route.  A couple minutes isn't worth your life.  And as Darren says, let's not pick on cyclists.  Has anyone here ever done a U-turn in a vehicle?