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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
This first post will be reserved for latest information about upcoming and current bicycle and pedestrian related projects.



Las Olas Blvd Complete Streets
Location: E Las Olas Blvd between Andrews Ave and 15th Ave (~1 mile)
Timeline: December 2014 - June 2015
Key points: Trolley bus stops, on-street parking, expanded sidewalks, bike lanes, street trees and traffic calming measures.

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Flagler Greenway [U/C]
Location: Flagler Village/Downtown along east side FEC tracks. (~1 mile)
Timeline: Phase I complete. Phase II under construction. Completion August 2012
Key points: Reduction in some auto lanes, addition of multipurpose path.

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SW 4th Ave Greenway
Location: SW 4th Ave between Broward Blvd and SW 34th St (Snyder Park) (~3 miles)
Timeline: November 2014 - November 2015
Key points: Multipurpose path.

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Broward Bicycle Sharing [U/C]
Location: Fort Lauderdale (downtown + beach), Pompano Beach, & Hollywood
Timeline: Opening December 14th, 2011, expanding through 2016
Key points: Starting at Pompano Beach, Hollywood, Fort Lauderdale Beach and Downtown with 20-25 stations with 250 bicycles

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New River Greenway [U/C]
Location: SR 84 between Markham Park and Secret Woods Park, Ft Lauderdale (~11.5 miles)
Timeline: Under construction
Key points: Multipurpose path.

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A1A/North Ocean Boulevard Improvements Project [U/C]
Location: A1A between Oakland Park Blvd & Flamingo Ave, Fort Lauderdale (~1 mile)
Timeline: February 2012 - February 2013
Key points:
* Upgrading pedestrian signals to include countdown timers
* Reducing the number of lanes from six to four lanes by restriping the roadway while adding bicycle lanes
* Upgrading curb ramps to meet Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) standards
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Ft. Lauderdale/Broward Open Streets Plans Route
October 13, 2010 in Day In the Life


SFBC Director Kathryn Moore and fellow Broward Open Streets Committee Team Member Bil Goetz sat down with Fort Lauderdale Police to plan the route of what we hope will be a March 2011 ‘ciclovia’ in Downtown Ft. Lauderdale. We watched this great video from Los Angeles’ inaugural “CicLAvia” event last Sunday and then traveled through different corridors to see what we thought would work best (be most fun for people while not limiting too much access to various destinations by motor/emergency vehicles and not requiring an excessive amount of resources in terms of police, staff, public works, cones, barricades, signs, etc.)

We know that South Florida can have the same success that Los Angeles experienced. Their event took two years of planning (including talking to us about our lessons learned from Bike Miami Days and other advocates from all over the Americas) and over $240,000 – but an estimated 70,000 -100,000 people got to explore their city in a new way because of the dedicated work of inspired volunteers.

There are lots of tweaks and extensions yet to consider in planning Broward’s route but here is a general idea of the streets we are discussing right now – connecting Downtown Ft. Lauderdale and the Riverfront with Holiday Park, Wilton Manors and possibly the beachfront from Las Olas to Birch Park…

*Huizenga Park to Esplanade Park via the RiverWalk
*Esplanade Park to East Las Olas via SE 2nd Street
*East Las Olas to 12th or 15th Avenue and then north to Holiday Park
*From Holiday Park up into Wilton Manors through a residential corridor
*Extending the route down the eastbound/south half of Las Olas Boulevard to AIA and then up the east side of AIA until Birch Park/Sunrise Boulevard.

The mission of the South Florida Bike Coalition is to increase and improve bicycling by fostering collaboration among all of us. If you would like to get more involved in formalizing this (or another) route, please let us know. Alternatively, you can come to any (or tonight’s) meeting of the Broward Metropolitan Planning Organization to get involved with the Broward Open Streets Group/Team/Committee (We should have a name! Ideas?)

Thanks for following what we are doing and for any support you can give to this campaign to make Broward Open Streets happen!
http://sfbikecoalition.wordpress.com/2010/10/13/ft-lauderdalebroward-open-streets-plans-route/
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Broward approves one of first mass bike-sharing programs in U.S.
By Brittany Wallman October 26, 2010 01:07 PM


Broward County will be one of the first places in America to add a mass bicycle sharing system to its public transportation network.

County commissioners voted unanimously Tuesday to sign a contract with a company called B-cycle. In about six months, the bikes and bike racks are expected to appear in Pompano Beach, Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood, with the hopes of expanding the system later.

The county will pay $311,000 to bring the program here -- money Broward got from the state Department of Transportation.

I'll post my previous story about this program on the jump, and you'll read more about it in tomorrow's Sun Sentinel.

Anyone with a credit card who is 18 or older can rent one of the bikes, for the day, the week or the month.

Miami Beach is launching a bike-sharing system in just a few weeks. They'll be the first in Florida to do so. That would make Fort Lauderdale the second, when this gets off the ground in 2011.

Commissioner Kristin Jacobs, just back from Portland, Oregon, where they are considering bike-sharing as well, said Broward needs to shift focus to bike riders and pedestrians, making them safe on the roadways.

"This is our first baby step,'' Jacobs said. " ... We have a long way to go.''


Broward looks at system where bicycles are picked up, dropped off at racks
Date: Sunday, May 16, 2010
Edition: Broward Metro Section: Local Page: 1B
Byline: By Brittany Wallman Sun Sentinel

Broward County hopes to become one of the first communities in America to roll out a massive bike-sharing system, setting up bikes along the beaches and downtowns for easy rental by residents and tourists.

The bike "libraries" have been popular for years in Europe - in Paris, particularly - but only now are catching on in the United States.

A major bike-sharing program will launch in July in Miami Beach. Denver introduced its system in April. Washington, D.C., has a relatively new bike-sharing program. Systems launch this year in Boston and Minneapolis.

"Bike sharing is definitely in its infancy in the United States," said Bob Burns, president of B-cycle, the company selected to possibly launch a system here. "Really, Broward County is very progressive. They're on the vanguard."

Broward County commissioners will vote this summer on a contract with B-cycle, if negotiations are successful. About 200 bikes would be in place six months later, Burns said. The system would grow to about 500 bikes over five years, according to B-cycle's proposal.

B-cycle would pay for the bikes and system, recouping its investment by selling ads on the bikes, bike baskets and kiosks. Burns said he believes that the system could be sustainable in a place like Broward, with so many tourists.

Here's how it works:

Tourists and residents alike can use the bicycles. They would be locked at bike racks placed along the beach or the downtowns of Broward's beachfront cities, probably starting with Fort Lauderdale and expanding to Hollywood, Pompano Beach, Hillsboro Beach and Deerfield Beach. A bike rider can sign up for a membership in advance, proposed at $45 a year. It would also be available for the week ($25), the day ($5) or the hour (50 cents for the first half hour, then $3 for each half hour after).

Without a membership, a customer can swipe a debit card and borrow a bike for any amount of time.

When the rider is done, the bike is dropped off and locked at another rack.

Here's how the company describes its system: "B-cycle is a next-gen bike-sharing system. In layman's terms: B-cycles are magic bikes that are there when you want one and gone when you don't. Just swipe your card, grab a bike, and get to where you're going."

The bikes have chips embedded in them in case they're lost or stolen. And riders can look online to find their mileage, the number of calories they burned and how much gasoline they saved by taking a bike.

"There's enough elements of fun built into their system that I think it's going to work," said County Commissioner Kristin Jacobs, who pushed for the system.

Yes, it's hot here. Yes, it rains a lot. But Jacobs said she thinks people in South Florida have "adapted" and would ride the bikes anyway, just like people in Germany put snow chains on their bicycles during the winter.

"It's about getting a few people off the road," Jacobs said.

Broward is not the safest place for bicycle riders, as accident statistics show. Riders are encouraged to wear a helmet; members who sign up get a coupon for a cheap one.

"We have a different context than Europe does, with our bikeability, which is very different," said Paul DeMaio of MetroBike LLC, a bike-sharing consultancy in Washington, D.C. DeMaio writes a bike-sharing blog, tracking the issue nationally.

"It's changing in the U.S.," DeMaio said. "Cities all across the U.S., big and small, are taking huge strides toward becoming more bike friendly."

The cost per bicycle, for startup, operating and maintenance, can reach $8,500, according to B-cycle's proposal to the county.

That would pay for a lot of bicycles, which could be just given away. But DeMaio said the point is to create a simple system that would allow drivers to ditch a car.

"It's all about making it easy. If you make it easy, people will use it," he said. "Right now, for the most part, driving is easy, and that's why people do it."​
http://weblogs.sun-sentinel.com/new...og/2010/10/broward_approves_one_of_first.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Las Olas leaders, city commissioner to discuss street improvements
By Scott Wyman December 6, 2010 09:30 AM


Improvement to Las Olas Boulevard will be discussed next week during a workshop between area civic leaders and the city commissioner who represents the area.

City Commissioner Romney Rogers has planned a workshop for Dec. 14 to discuss downtown safety, parking and landscaping. About 50 merchants, nearby property owners and leaders of the Beverly Heights, Colee Hammock and downtown Fort Lauderdale civic association groups are invited.

Safety has been a concern since two pedestrians were hit by cars and killed in March. Police officers have cracked down on traffic violations and handed out hundreds of tickets to drivers and walkers.

Store owners have made suggestions including raised crosswalks and caution signs announcing that drivers must stop for pedestrians at crosswalks. The city commissioners have also discussed lowering the speed limit and installing red-light cameras at Las Olas intersections.

The city is offering free parking in the shopping district again this the holiday season. The program started with the Christmas on Las Olas festival last week and will run through the end of January.
http://weblogs.sun-sentinel.com/new...g/2010/12/las_olas_leaders_city_commissi.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I-595 bike path makes it tough to cross streets
New River Greenway lacks crosswalks where trail intersects north-south streets at I-595

By Michael Turnbell, Sun Sentinel
10:22 p.m. EST, December 27, 2010


The new greenway along the north side of the canal next to Interstate 595 has some major kinks.

Namely, the six- to eight-lane, divided north-south streets that cyclists, rollerbladers and pedestrians have to cross in order to use it.

The problem is there are no crosswalks where the trail intersects Southwest 136th Avenue, Flamingo Road, Hiatus Road, Nob Hill Road and Pine Island Road.

Instead, you have to walk, skate or ride your bike over the North New River Canal to the crosswalk and traffic signal at State Road 84.

Ever since the first phase of the $5.9 million greenway was completed in August between Southwest 136th Avenue and University Drive, complaints have poured in to state and Broward County officials.

Essentially they boil down to this: How are we supposed to cross the street? And why didn't you build an overpass?

Broward County consistently ranks near the top of lists of the most dangerous places to walk or ride a bike, and officials hope to create a way people can safely move about the county on a network of trails. Some say the New River Greenway misses the mark.

"The whole thing is a waste, perhaps except for people that want to use it as a sidewalk for their children that live between any of the cross streets," said Mike Miller, an avid cyclist.

"It seems ludicrous that the users have to travel from the nice, wide path to the street light at State Road 84, wait for the light, taking their life into their own hands with the right turn on red light running vehicles, then travel back up to the continuation of the nice, wide path," said Karen Davis-Powers, who lives near Hiatus Road and I-595 in Plantation.

Glenn Deibert had some nice things to say about the new greenway before lodging the same complaints as others.

"It's a smoother ride because it's concrete. It's wider so you don't have to worry about oncoming cyclists or passing people," he said. "But it is a pain getting across the intersections. I've been blown at, given the finger, you name it."

Officials at Broward County, which own and maintain the greenway, are considering ways to make it easier to cross the streets without building pedestrian bridges, such as installing mid-block pedestrian signals. They will begin discussions in January with officials with the Florida Department of Transportation.

But pedestrian signals might be a problem for two reasons, said Laila Haddad, a DOT spokeswoman for the I-595 project.

One, it would be close to the existing traffic signals at S.R. 84.

Two, traffic engineers prefer crosswalks that allow people to cross the street in one movement, without stopping in the median. The alignment of the north-south cross streets won't allow that, Haddad said. In some cases, there are guardrails or barrier walls that would have to be removed to allow people to cross the street.

The New River Greenway was relocated to the north side of the canal that runs along I-595 to accommodate the westbound lanes of I-595 and S.R. 84, which are moving next to the canal bank as the expressway is widened.

The new 12-foot wide concrete path replaced an asphalt trail that ran along the south side of the canal.

I-595 contractors are working on the portion of the greenway from State Road 7 to the Secret Woods Nature Preserve off S.R. 84 in Dania Beach and should be finished this month. Construction of the portion from Davie Road to S.R. 7 will start later.

From University Drive to Davie Road, the trail will use existing sidewalks and a new sidewalk built along the south side of eastbound S.R. 84. Broward County will soon build relocate the westernmost stretch of the greenway to the north side of the canal from 136th Avenue to Markham Park in Sunrise.

Officials considered overpasses to carry the trail over cross streets, but decided against them because of the cost and challenges in making them accessible for people with disabilities.

The overpasses would have to be up to 200 feet long, extending well beyond the intersections, to rise high enough over the cross streets for traffic to pass underneath. They would have required circular ramps with the proper slope or stairs.

The overpasses themselves would have created problems for people trying to access the trail from the cross streets, said Mark Horowitz, Broward County's bicycling and pedestrian coordinator.

"If you were on one side of the street and wanted to get to the trail on the other side, you would have to go the opposite direction about 150 feet, then back up 150 feet just to get back to where you were. Then you could cross the street," Horowitz said. " We didn't think people would end up doing that."

The South Florida Water Management District also insisted that any overpasses be built as close to the property line between the canal and homeowners as possible.

"That essentially meant putting 15 to 20-foot high bridges in people's back yards. We didn't think that was going to be very well received," Horowitz said.
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/broward/fl-595-bike-path-20101225,0,3474482.story
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I guess I'll stick this here...

Boom in rickshaws on horizon in Fort Lauderdale
City looks at improving safety standards

By Scott Wyman, Sun Sentinel
5:14 p.m. EST, February 7, 2011


FORT LAUDERDALE —
The number of rickshaws that offer rides downtown and along the beach could more than triple.

A fleet of 20 of the tricycle cabs currently operate in the city, but businesses have applied to add as many as 50 more. Police administrators are concerned about traffic safety, and city officials are scrambling to improve safety regulations as a result.

The companies say the rides are increasingly popular among tourists as a way to see the area and get around without hailing a taxi or renting a car. They're asking to start service as early as 7 a.m. and run as late as 4 a.m. seven days a week.

"Our guys are good-will ambassadors for Fort Lauderdale," said Jay Alexander, owner of Ocean View Rickshaw, "People get off our bikes with a smile on their face, and so many say it's the best thing they've done in Fort Lauderdale."

Ocean View, the city's sole existing rickshaw firm, has applied to add 30 cabs to its 20-vehicle fleet, while Orient Express Rickshaws wants to launch service in Fort Lauderdale with up to 20 cabs.

When the applications arrived on their agenda last week, city commissioners were stunned to learn that the safety standards had not been updated since the late 1980s, not even after a serious accident on New Year's Day 2008. They've delayed a decision on the applications for at least a month while new rules are written.

The city doesn't require safety features such as lights, turn signals, rearview mirrors and seat belts. The current barebones requirements say operators must have a driver's license and can't impede traffic. Companies must carry liability insurance of $100,000 per accident.

The city is now discussing whether to require as much as $1 million in insurance coverage. Other potential requirements are safety features like seat belts, annual inspections of the pedicabs and the posting of rate and ownership information in the vehicle.

Fort Lauderdale's Police Department, in a memo given to city commissioners, said more rickshaws will increase competition with cars for road space and should be barred from congested streets.

One suggestion is to limit the number of additional cabs to 12, bringing the total on the street to 32 rather than the 70 sought by the industry.

Julie Perry said the city must do more to ensure safety, particularly considering what happened to her three years ago.

She and her friend, Susan Finnerty, had decided to top off their celebrations of the start of 2008 with a rickshaw ride from the beach up Las Olas Boulevard. The pedicab was crossing Las Olas' bridge when a car slammed into the rear and sped off.

Perry suffered a skull fracture and a broken clavicle. Finnerty injured her knee.

The rickshaw company had no insurance coverage, and the city revoked its license to operate a couple months later. The hit-and-run driver has never been caught.

Perry, now a public relations executive in Indianapolis, said she spent 10 months out of work and still has not fully recovered. She undergoes regular therapy for facial paralysis. Perry said she ran up more than $30,000 in debt since she had to pay her own medical bills.

"You would have thought once the accident happened and was brought to the city's attention that more action would have been taken," she said. "When you see a pedicab, you think 'How charming.' But they can be downright dangerous. The streets in Fort Lauderdale are so crowded that the city really needs to take precautions."

Rickshaw owners have told city officials that they support raising safety standards to mirror what is followed in other metro areas.

Orlando adopted its first safety rules about three years ago when the number of pedicabs boomed downtown. New York City implemented stronger regulations two years ago after a driver and two passengers were seriously injured in an accident.

Ocean View's safety standards exceed the city's, said Weaver, who has pedicab operations around the country. He said his firm has had no accidents in Fort Lauderdale in which people have been injured.

He requires drivers to undergo training, equips his vehicles with lights, reflectors and seat belts, and requires drivers to have passengers walk across the Las Olas bridge as a precaution. He said Fort Lauderdale's insurance requirements are far below what his company — and most others — carry.

"When you look back at the accident on the bridge, we need better safety standards," said Commissioner Bruce Roberts, the city's former police chief. "The pedicabs do create ambiance for tourists and offer transportation choices, but there is a life-safety issue here too."
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/br...aws-rules-lauderdale-20110207,0,6130268.story
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Rodstrom says he'll back safety improvements on Las Olas
By Scott Wyman February 24, 2011 09:00 AM


Broward County Commissioner John Rodstrom says he is willing to back the city of Fort Lauderdale’s effort to improve crosswalks and reduce the speed limit on Las Olas Boulevard.

City officials and area merchants are pushing the ideas as ways to increase safety in the busy and historic shopping district. But the city needs county approval because the county has control over the road.

Merchants have complained about numerous near accidents between pedestrians and motorists. Two pedestrians were hit by cars and killed last year along the street, and the city has stepped up traffic enforcement – issuing twice as many tickets last year as in 2009.

City commissioners last week said they would ask the county about dropping the speed limit from 35 mph and allowing fluorescent green pedestrian crosswalk signs mid-block similar to signs along State Road A1A on the beach. They also want reflective tape to illuminate the crosswalks.

County staff has told the city that with such pedestrian markings goes against its standards.

Rodstrom said the city has not formally asked him to take up the issue, but saw the steps as reasonable.

“It’s pretty chaotic,” Rodstrom said. “People are darting out all over, and it’s an obstacle course.”
http://weblogs.sun-sentinel.com/new...g/2011/02/rodstrom_says_hell_back_safety.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
More rickshaws coming to Fort Lauderdale
Commissioners permitting 20 more cabs on city streets

By Scott Wyman, Sun Sentinel
9:22 p.m. EST, March 2, 2011


FORT LAUDERDALE

The number of rickshaws in the city will soon double.

City commissioners agreed Tuesday to allow 20 more of the tricycle cabs, but also increased safety regulations for the first time in 30 years. A fleet of 20 cabs currently operate in the city, and companies wanted as many as 50 more.

Under the tougher regulations, companies must carry $1 million in liability insurance. Drivers cannot use cell phones while they have passengers, and alcohol is not allowed in the cab. Cabs must be equipped with a bell or horn as well as headlights and taillights.

Ocean View, the city's sole existing rickshaw firm, has applied to add 30 cabs to its 20-vehicle fleet, while Orient Express Rickshaws wants to launch service in Fort Lauderdale with up to 20 cabs. Each received 10 new permits under the commission's decision.

When the applications arrived on their agenda this month, city commissioners were stunned to learn that the safety standards had not been updated since the late 1980s, not even after a serious accident on New Year's Day 2008. They delayed a decision on the applications until this week while the new rules were written.

The city didn't require safety features such as lights, turn signals, rearview mirrors and seat belts. The current barebones requirements say operators must have a driver's license and can't impede traffic. Companies must carry liability insurance of $100,000 per accident.

Fort Lauderdale's Police Department questioned extra cabs, saying they could create increased competition with cars for road space. The department cited a 2008 accident in which two people were seriously injured while taking a rickshaw ride on Las Olas Boulevard.
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/br...ws-lauderdale-number-20110302,0,3087983.story
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
East Las Olas Boulevard speed limit lowered to 25 mph
By Linda Trischitta, Sun Sentinel
4:48 p.m. EDT, April 21, 2011


FORT LAUDERDALE—
City officials hope that traffic will move more slowly and more safely along a dozen of the most popular blocks of East Las Olas Boulevard now that the speed limit is reduced from 30 mph to 25 mph.

Drivers are being given six weeks to get used to the change. At the end of May, tickets will be issued for motorists who do not obey the new speed limit in effect between South Andrews Avenue and Southeast 15th Avenue that was lowered April 15, Fort Lauderdale spokeswoman Petula Burks said.

"It's now a permanent change," Burks said. "The city requested it to make sure our drivers and pedestrians operate congenially and that motorists slow down for pedestrians and bicyclists."

In 2010, two pedestrians were killed along the strip. Merchants have complained of frequent near misses between humans and vehicles.

"We're in the midst of a pedestrian safety campaign and want to remind folks of the rules," Burks said. Tips from the city for motorists include: Drive slowly in crosswalks, be prepared to stop at them if people are crossing, and be aware of jaywalkers.

The city advises pedestrians to use sidewalks, cross only at crosswalks, and obey flashing signs. Also, walkers should stop and look twice in both directions before moving in front of traffic. They should be aware of cars that are turning at red lights, and make eye contact with drivers before crossing in front of them.
http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/br...-las-olas-speed-limit-20110421,0,847290.story
 
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