Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bicycle Traffic Signals in Copenhagen

A paradigm shift is necessary in the United States for traffic signals to effectively serve bicycles. Copenhagen serves as a model for us, yet it will require substantial changes in cyclist behavior in addition to the robust redesign of signalized intersections to accomplish a more sustainable model for moving the industry forward.
This particular example of a cyclist is at a location where the left turn demand is fairly light, but the cyclist in the picture exits the cycletrack on the right and knows to wait for the pedestrian crossing on the perpendicular movement in order to make the left turn. There is no special left turn indication for this movement at this location (largely because it seems like a low volume movement). It would be very nice to have traffic volumes and safety data for these intersections.

The GPS enabled camera that I am using geolocates my pictures in the ballpark.

The smaller four inch heads seems sufficient for the needs of slower moving vehicles (bicycles). The blue bicycle with white stencil seem to be clear and matches the blue pavement markings that the Danes are so used to seeing delineating where bikes are present. That is probably not a coincidence.

I tried to connect with an engineer from Copenhagen that was identified as part of the AASHTO European scanning tour, but did not hear anything back when I sent emails to the staff in Malmo or the staff in Copenhagen. It could be that my email was spammed or that our system blocked their message in return. Isn't it unfortunate that our email systems would keep us from communicating with one another.

The vendor of the signals that I have seen prominently on some of the signals is Swarco. They are based out of Austria and we have been trying to purchase a signal head from them for the past three months. Unfortunately, we're only asking for a half dozen or so, thus it has been hard to actually procure the equipment that we desire to initiate that paradigm shift. If we dud use the blue light special on top of the red, yellow, green display, should we use green on top instead of blue since FHWA required us to use green on the pavement (probably not a good idea because of the potential for confusion.
Posted by Picasa

No comments: