Walkable Sacramento #7: barriers

There are two major kinds of barriers to walking in the city, natural barriers such as the two rivers, and constructed barriers such as the freeways. Fixing either kind will be quite expensive. I am in favor of pedestrian and bicyclist bridges, perhaps with transit if appropriate, but not motor vehicles. Though a small increase in the number of road crossings is needed, most of these are outside the city in the county.

Policies:

  • Construct safe pedestrian and bicyclist over-crossings of freeways, and rail lines without street-level crossings, at an interval of no less than one-quarter mile, to improve circulation. Work with Caltrans, railroads, and the legislature to ensure that the expense is shared and not the sole responsibility of city taxpayers. Complete within ten years. 
  • Consider safe pedestrian and bicyclist crossings of the rivers (Sacramento and American) at an interval of no less than one-half mile, to improve circulation. Complete within 15 years.
R Street bike bridge over I-5

Yet another criminal

I was assaulted by a vehicle driver today on J Street. Assault includes intent to harm with a deadly weapon, which is a motor vehicle, and does not require actual battery. Having learned my lesson from the last incident, I got the license number and vehicle description right. I did not get enough of a driver ID to press charges, but it will at least go on their record.

The details:
3VFM067 CA
White Toyota 4-runner, not new
White male young
J St eastbound at 10th St
Occurred about 6:25pm, 2012-05-29

A white Toyota 4-runner driven by a young white male attempted to intimidate me off the roadway by using his vehicle as a weapon. The driver gunned their engine at me for a block, and then passed within 3 inches, I felt the mirror touch my arm. I was traveling in the rightmost lane at about 20 mph. There is no bike lane in this area, and the lane is not wide enough to share. The other two eastbound travel lanes were open, at a time of light traffic, so the driver could have easily passed but chose to intimidate me. I caught up to the person and asked why he would use his vehicle to kill another person, and he flipped me off. Another vehicle immediately following did the same thing, passing too closely, so I suspect the two drivers were traveling together.

Incident 12-146316
Responding officer R. Cabrera, Sacramento Police Department

Bikes on RT Light Rail

Bikes and light rail are a natural complement to each other. Light rail covers the longer distances quickly, while bikes get you from your origin and to your destination, directly or via connecting bus service. I’ll post about buses later.

Bikes can be taken on all Sacramento RT Light Rail trains, without time restrictions. However, there is insufficient capacity on light rail for bicyclists, for two reasons:
1. The restriction on the number of bicycles per car of four does not reflect the current demand for bicycle space. This is a relict of a time when few bicyclists used light rail, and must be modified.
2. Passengers without bicycles occupy the end spots of the cars, seemingly in preference, precluding use by bicyclists. These bicyclists then cram their bikes into other spaces and inconvenience other passengers.

Continue reading “Bikes on RT Light Rail”