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Sharing the Road on Raymond Avenue

This time, I neglected to give my “We’re taking the lane!” signal, whereupon the driver behind us assumed we would all fit into the roundabout / traffic circle at Vassar’s Main Gate:

Raymond Ave - passing into Main Gate roundabout - rear camera - 2019-03-28
Raymond Ave – passing into Main Gate roundabout – rear camera – 2019-03-28

Raymond Avenue’s original “standards compliant” design has undergone some revision during the last few years:

Raymond Ave - passing into Main Gate roundabout - helmet 1 - 2019-03-28
Raymond Ave – passing into Main Gate roundabout – helmet 1 – 2019-03-28

The brace of black bollards centered on the median at the “pedestrian refuge” now replace the original quartet of illuminated, albeit non-reflective black, bollards, after errant drivers successively destroyed them.

There’s apparently no standard governing the placement or depth of drain grates along the right edge of the lane, nor the amount of gravel and trash allowed to accumulate to the right of the fog line:

Raymond Ave - passing into Main Gate roundabout - helmet 2 - 2019-03-28
Raymond Ave – passing into Main Gate roundabout – helmet 2 – 2019-03-28

Mary is just barely clearing the grate, I’m moving leftward to ensure I’m the first one to get hit. Fortunately, common sense broke out:

Raymond Ave - passing into Main Gate roundabout - helmet 3 - 2019-03-28
Raymond Ave – passing into Main Gate roundabout – helmet 3 – 2019-03-28

We got through the traffic circle without further contention and continued on our way.

Getting squeezed into a traffic circle happens often enough to show whatever NYS DOT uses as a “design standard” doesn’t include pedestrian or bicyclist safety as measurable quantities.

As we all know, anything you don’t measure doesn’t happen.

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    • #2 by Ed on 2019-04-07 - 09:25

      Looks utterly pleasant to me!

      Heck, I’d settle for paving that good …

  1. #3 by david on 2019-04-07 - 15:19

    I don’t understand why you’d ever bike on the shoulder to begin with. You don’t have to “take” the lane if you’re already in it where you should have been all along… shoulders are unsafe, period.

    • #4 by Ed on 2019-04-07 - 17:58

      On Raymond, there’s basically no shoulder at all: the curb is foot to the right of the fog line, so that’s where all the junk collects. We’re basically riding just left of the fog line, except where deteriorated pavement forces us leftward, and overtaking traffic generally climbs the median to get around us.

      Elsewhere on our usual routes, the shoulders are generally OK, so there’s no improvement gained by taking the lane. We have no qualms about doing so as needed, though!

      The overall state of the roads / shoulders rules out trikes, because there’s no way to keep all three wheel tracks out of the rubble and potholes.

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