W 32nd & E33rd Avenue Project needs your input.

30th Ave Exiting30th Proposed

(Phase I's 30th Ave existing on left, Proposed on right)

Anchorage's most promising bike equitable projects is near the final design of its first of four phases, with Phase I being planned for construction in 2021. The overall project is scoped to create an east-west low-stress route through the Midtown area from Spenard Road to the Seward Highway. The route moves along avenues with historically less driver-pedestrian/bike collisions and through the main intersections that are signalized. The aim is to offer a continuous connection that most adult riders will feel is convenient and comfortable enough to bike through Midtown. Basically, an urban bike route designed in a way that people who don't consider themselves "fearless cyclists" will feel is an option.

This style of transportation design has proven time and time again to be the biggest return on investment a city can make. For Anchorage, it's a first and an incremental project towards a fundamental shift. This shift will challenge our city's designers to move away from prioritizing vehicle speeds on every road in order to greatly benefit the many community members interested in the freedom to accessing Midtown by bike.

Highlights from Phase I include:

-Upgrades to W. 30th Ave (19-feet of space for walking and rolling, 20-feet of space for driving)

-A pathway on North Star Ln (8-feet for walking and rolling, 20-feet for driving).

-A new 10-foot pathway connection to Arctic Blvd.

-Arctic Blvd Pedestrian crossing improvements at 32nd.

-Striping with interim painted bike lanes on W. 32nd Ave between Arctic Blvd and C St.

 

(The project's phasing will be done in four parts starting on the west end and moving east) 

 

This is where you come in:

The Bike Anchorage Advocacy Committee have been closely following the projects' development and have submitted comments and recommendations in an effort to ensure the most effective and bike user friendly design is proposed.  The committee has delivered markups to the planset and requests using our decades of combined Anchorage commute biking experience, nationally recognized low-stress design guidance, and the lessons learned from cities with more mature urban biking infrastructure. Please take a moment to see what our team came up with and click on our link below to submit what you think the project needs. Feel free to use our recommendations if you agree with them. You can help our city officials understand your needs and concerns as a person interested in a safer, cleaner, and fiscally responsible Anchorage for all!   

 

Bike Anchorage Advocacy Committee's direct requests

1. Where no physical separation is offered to cyclists (30th Ave: Spenard Rd to N. Star St):

  • Keep the 30th Ave at 20mph and do not increase vehicle speeds to 25mph as currently proposed.
  • Help slow traffic down by narrowing vehicle lanes from 10 to 9-feet where bike lanes are located. (See image 1)
  • Add speed bumps or employ other traffic calming tools to induce slower speeds and discourage reoccurring through vehicle traffic along the entirety of 30th Ave. (See image 2)
  • Add a transportation mode “permeability filter” to the north end of N. Star St to allow only non-motorized and emergency vehicle access. (See image 2)
  • Add stricter “no parking” signage with fine amounts shown to deter bike lane parking. Consider adding parking enforcement agreements to contracts. (See image 2)
  • Add “bikes may use full lane” signage on 30th and 32nd at all locations where bike lanes end, and at the beginning of mixed-use unstriped roadways. Consider sharrows. (See image 2) 

2. Arctic Blvd Crossing:

  • Add Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacon (RRFB) to the crossing. (See image 4)
  • Make the pathways intersection with Arctic Blvd have a wider opening and larger curves so people on bikes can easily navigate the narrow 4-foot sidewalk. (See image 4)
  • Use a 10-foot cargo bike as the "design vehicle" for pathway curves and approaches.
  • Between the pathway and crossing, make the sidewalk wider there so bike and peds can cross each other. (See image 4)
  • Add additional width to crosswalk with green bike lane paint crossing bars. (See image 4)

3. Comments for all project phases:

  • Add continuous (raised) sidewalks and bike lanes at all commercial approaches. This will increase safety by physically indicating the right-of-way to pedestrians and bikes. Making people on bikes go up and down grades and bumps will greatly degrade user experience. 
  • Traffic signalization timing at A and C streets: 
    • Ensure an average speed cyclist does not have to stop at both signals due to vehicle speed prioritized phase timing.
    • Propose traffic loops in a way that allows for an easy retrofit of “bike box” staging areas.
  • Install bike detection loops and bike specific signals at signalized intersections, or install facilities now to allow for cost efficient retrofits.
  • Add bike-lane accessible queuing buttons if no bike detection will be offered. 
  • Use a 10-foot cargo bike as the design vehicle for all curves and curb return radii on bike path approaches, roundabout pathways, and islands.
  • Add more wayfinding signage at the main approaches and turns of the bikeway to indicate the route to approaching (north/southbound) non-motorized traffic.

Bike Anchorage Advocacy Committee's planset markups

(Image 1)

 

(Image 2)

 

(Image 3)

 

(Image 4)

 

Resources

 

 


It's here!

Do you remember the fundraiser we did on July 17th to purchase a second tool station for Kincaid Park? Well, we are very happy to announce that thanks to everyone who donated and the Anchorage Parks and Rec department the tool station is ready to be used, and you can find it at the Jodhpur Parking lot next to the Kiosk. 

The tool station has a pump, two tire levers, Allen wrenches (2.5, 3, 4, 5, 6, and 8mm), box wrenches sizes 8, 9, 10, 11, 15, and 32mm, and least but not last Phillips and flat head screwdrivers.

We are currently working on fixing the pump heads of the tool stations of Kincaid Chalet, and the Abbott Loop Community Park. If you notice an issue with any of the other tool stations in town, you can report it here. 

If want to know where the other tool stations are located, click here. 

Enjoy the trails! 

 

 


Dowling Road/Seward Highway Interchange Reconstruction

The Dowling roundabouts have been identified as a major safety concern for Anchorage bicyclists. In a survey administered by Vision Zero in 2016, the Dowling/Seward Interchange was the second-most-commonly identified intersection where respondents were concerned about bicycle/pedestrian safety (following Northern Lights & New Seward).

Both the Anchorage Bicycle Plan (2010) and the Anchorage Pedestrian Plan (2007) also identify the interchange as an area where non-motorized facilities need improvement. Dowling is one of only a few places where any traffic can cross the New Seward Highway in South Anchorage, so ensuring safety and usability for all types of traffic is crucial.

- The Dowling/Seward Interchange Draft Design Study Report (May 2019) does not propose substantive changes to how non-motorized users will travel through the roundabouts

- We also note that there are no dedicated bicycle facilities planned as part of this project. Instead, bicyclists are expected to share pedestrian facilities, which decreases usability and safety both for bicyclists and pedestrians.

 With wider lanes motorists tend increase their speeds. 

Our requests

Given that bicyclists will be expected to share pedestrian facilities to travel through the roundabouts, and barring any major changes to the planned roundabout design, we request the following design elements to improve usability and safety for bicyclists:

  1.     Ensure that all crosswalk refuge islands are at least 12 ft wide to allow longer bicycles (tandems, recumbent trikes, bikes pulling trailers) to fit in the refuge area. Otherwise, those islands will be unusable or hazardous traps for a portion of the cycling traffic.
  2.     Consider installing concrete curbs between the motorized travel lanes rather than simply painting buffers; this will help reduce motorized traffic speeds at crosswalks, which is crucial for improving safety for non-motorized users in roundabouts.

  3.     Install Rectangular Rapid Flashing Beacons (RRFBs) at every crosswalk. The current plan to install RRFBs only at the north-south crossings neglects to assist non-motorized traffic crossing east-west to travel along Dowling. Most non-motorized traffic travels along Dowling, rather than along the frontage roads, and thus will be using the east-west crossings. The Draft Design Study Report acknowledges that driver yielding behavior is known to be poor at all exits of the roundabout, indicating the need for improved crossing safety in all directions.

  4.     Assuming the RRFBs will be manually triggered, please ensure that the angles of approach between the crosswalk ramps and the buttons allow for the wider-turning radius of longer bicycles, as well as ensuring access for riders of recumbent bicycles who cannot step up on a curb to access the button.

  5.     Paint the crosswalks with zebra stripes, which improve motorists’ awareness of the presence of a crosswalk, rather than two parallel lines as indicated in the project graphics.

  6.     Install Pedestrian Crossing warning signs prior to each crosswalk (not only at the crosswalk as currently planned) to alert motorists in advance.

  7.  Prior to and after the roundabouts on both Dowling and the frontage roads, provide ramps for bicyclists to move between the road and the sidewalk/path. Some bicyclists may prefer to use the crosswalks in the roundabouts but would otherwise be biking on the road, especially given that there are painted bike lanes on Dowling just two blocks west of the interchange. Allowing bicyclists a safe, clear, and timely way to exit the road will be crucial for the safety of all traffic.

Comment period: 

September 21, 2020, through October 23, 2020, and closes at 5:00 PM AKST.

 

 


Other resources

Read an Article about Roundabouts and Non-motorized users Here. 

 

 

 

 


Check the treat Stations Map for Take a Bike Ride Day

What do the colors mean?
Yellow - stations available from 11:00 AM to 01:00 PM
Blue - stations available from 04:00 to 06:00 PM
Pink - stations with gifts for riders, both will be available on both schedules. I
If you click on the pin, you can see details like the exact address and the host name.

We'll see you on September 22nd!


Take a Bike Ride Day

Many things have changed this year due to COVID-19, and our beloved "Bike to Work Day" is not the exception.

As its name says, the event focuses on counting, encouraging, and rewarding all of those biking from their homes to their workplaces; treat stations are located all around the city, and cyclists can stop by and have a snack, participants can also get a commemorative shirt. 

Anchorage Bike to Work Day is a local celebration of the national event initiated in 1965 by the League of American Bicyclists. Each May, Bike to Work Day is a celebration of community and health.
Rider participation has increased 260% since 2007; and in 2017 a total of 4,189 riders were counted. Thank you to our dedicated volunteer counters, snack/treat station hosts and partners!


A large number of people are still working from home, that's why this year we've changed the name to "Take a Bike Ride Day", meaning that we will be celebrating all of those riding a bike around the city.
Take a Bike Ride Day will take place on September 22nd in conjunction with World Car-Free Day!

You can register individually and ride solo, or register the members of your household and/or family and encourage them to ride with you on this day. 

Treat stations will be available from 11:00 AM - 01:00 PM and 04:00 PM - 06:00 PM with pre-packaged food and beverages, a map with the location of the treat stations will be available soon!

We ask everyone to follow all physical distancing and face-covering requirements, we also encourage everyone to wear a helmet, if you don't have one you can get one for free by completing this online bike course. 

Mark your calendar, and register!

   

 


League Cycling Instructor Seminar

We are excited to announce that we will be hosting a League Cycling Instructor Seminar in Anchorage.


But wait, what is it a League Cycling Instructor?
League Cycling Instructors are ambassadors for better biking through education, the seminar is a certification for experienced cyclists that primarily focuses on training them on how best to teach bicycling education. By the end of the seminar, they will have a strong working knowledge of bikes, bike maintenance, experience riding in high traffic scenarios, and bicycling infrastructure. The seminar is not only about learning how to ride safely, it's about teaching others to do so. 

LCI can teach Smart Cycling Classes to children, as well as adults, they help people feel more secure about getting on a bike and teach them to ride safely and legally. To get more information about becoming a League Cycling Instructor, click here

In case you've never heard before about The League of American Bicyclists, we invite you to visit this page to know everything about them!



Are you interested in attending the Seminar?
Here is what you need to know:

1. The registration fee for the seminar is $500, registration closes September 12th, don't miss it! If you are interested in registering send an email to dev@bikeanchorage.org
(you will need to become a member of The League of American bicyclists, and pay for a one-year membership $40.00 in order to register)

2. In order to obtain the certification, you need to successfully complete a Smart Cycling Class at least 3 weeks before the event and attend the 3-day seminar. 
(Most of the Smart Cycling Class can be done virtually)

3. You will need to practice social distancing, and wear a mask during the whole duration of the seminar. 



 

 

We have scholarships for people who are interested in taking the seminar and identify as WTF-GNC or BIPOC, to apply for a scholarship fill out this form and send an email detailing your cycling experience to dev@bikeanchorage.org (The scholarship covers the registration fee only) .

*Women, Trans*, Femme, Gender Non-Conforming, or Black, Indigenous and People of Color.