HASSO HERING

A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

Ideas to make biking safer: Take the survey

Written September 13th, 2021 by Hasso Hering

This intersection — Pacific, Airport Road and Albany Avenue — is a challenge for people on bikes and on foot.

A local government agency is giving people a chance to say which projects they would support in order to make it easier or safer to get around in the Albany area by bicycle or on foot.

This comes in the form of an online survey sponsored by the Albany Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, which serves to coordinate transportation projects. Its territory includes Jefferson, Millersburg and Tangent along with Albany.

The MPO is working to put together a bicycle and pedestrian plan for the greater Albany area.

Last spring it sponsored a survey, also online, that asked people who drive everywhere why they don’t take a bike more often.

Fifty-four percent of the 246 people who answered that question cited a lack of bike lanes or off-road paths and the like. Forty-nine percent had safety concerns about roads and intersections.

Thirty-four percent said driving is more convenient and faster.

Respondents also got a chance to list improvements they would like to to see. Now many of these suggestions have been compiled, and the new survey asks people which they would support.

The ideas range from intercity paths between the communities in the MPO to local additions to the walking and cycling facilities in different parts of Albany.

The survey can be accessed here. The MPO says the results will be considered as one of several factors that go into the final plan.

But don’t wait too long if you want to take part, says Catherine Rohan, assistant transportation planner for the MPO, because the survey will close Sept. 29.

Among the ideas listed are a multi-use path between Jefferson and Millersburg, separated bike lanes on Old Salem Road and Salem Avenue, five-foot shoulders on Century Drive, separated or buffered bike lanes on parts of Geary Street and Queen and 34th Avenues, similar improvements along Waverly Drive, and in South Albany and Tangent, a multiuse path on McFarland Road and Looney Lane.

In Albany, the streets mentioned already have bike lanes for the most part, but evidently they don’t feel safe enough to everyone. (hh)





8 responses to “Ideas to make biking safer: Take the survey”

  1. Don says:

    Not agencies but bikers should be required to have led lights front and back and wear clothes with some color. They do not realize how invisible they are when the background setting is a batch of trees and they have on dark clothes with no lights.

    • Francois DeLacroix says:

      This comment is spot on. Bicyclists seem to believe that everyone is always watching for them. They think because they have a “right” to use the right of way that they are “owed” some deference regardless of how much they abuse or how many traffic laws they violate. As someone who rode a motorcycle for years (nobody sees them either) I would advise bicyclists not to take their presence on busy roads for granted. Bikes do not belong on the sides of narrow roads where cars are allowed 30-40 mph speeds. There is little room for error.

  2. Jake Jaques JJ Johnny Hartman says:

    In regards to the survey this article linked to: a simple question:

    Why does the survey have to ask about:
    one’s age
    one’s gender
    one’s income
    one’s race

    These questions have no bearing on the issue at stake. It’s about bicycles, for god’s sake. All these questions do is divide and categorize people, reinforcing stereotypes held by the very people who “design” these surveys. Knowing a person’s gender does nothing to promote safe bicycling in Albany.

  3. John Klock says:

    Thanks for posting this. Important on many fronts. Congestion, making Albany a livable city, climate change. Many of your readers do not realize how loud and scary riding in Albany can be. Biking is a right of citizens and it is slowly eroded away with more and more traffic. On North Albany, road I feel sorry for the old folks walking from the Bonaventure Senior Living Center on Hickory Street. Even though they wait patiently for the crosswalk to turn green, there are so many disrespectful cars and trucks that are in such a hurry that they can’t even wait till an elderly person crosses the street.

    • Abe Cee says:

      You make it sound like biking and walking are a right of citizenship but driving a car is not. Why is the option of driving always deemed less desirable than others?

  4. Bill Kapaun says:

    I’d be happy just to see them sweep the bike lanes on Pacific between Airport Rd & Madison.

  5. Emily says:

    Maybe paint the bike lanes green like they do in Portland.

  6. M. Richner says:

    Where are all these bicyclists yearning for more and better bike lanes? I rarely, very rarely, see them in and around Albany.

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