Bike Lanes III

Went to the on-bike education class hosted by SVBC and the City of Mountain View and taught by John Ciccarelli, a very able LCI (League Cycling Instructor) and transportation planner. It was so worthwhile. I had taken a similar class a few years ago when I was just starting out with street bicycling, and that was very helpful, but it was good to have a brush-up and pick up some pointers that I had missed before or forgotten. I urge anyone who can to take this type of class. From what I have observed out there, many people could benefit.

So back to the bike lanes in Campbell. I ride up Winchester in south Campbell fairly often. There are some puzzling aspects to the bike lanes. Going north, the bike lane starts under the San Tomas Expressway/Camden overpass, just before the cars come down the ramp from Camden and merge onto Winchester. But where the merge occurs, the bike lane suddenly takes a vacation. I haven't been sure the best way to negotiate that, even though I know I have the right of way, as cars come down the ramp pretty fast. What I learned from John is that I should take the lane in the right hand through lane. But I still think it would be better if the bike lane were striped all the way through.

After going through the intersection at the bottom of the ramp, the bike lane reappears again. But here, cars are allowed to park in the bike lane, all the way to Campbell Avenue, a distance of over one mile. So the bike lane here doesn't mean much. By the time you are out of the door zone, you are in the car lane. My guess is that they wanted to increase parking for the Winchester light rail station, and it was at the expense of bicyclists.

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