Now that we've talked about bikes, e-bikes and e-scooters, it's time to talk about where all those things (plus skateboards, boosted boards, etc.) can go.…
That's streets, paths and sidewalks. Currently, different and confusing rules for those because they are based on land use.
Allowed: Human-powered (bikes, skateboards, rollerblades) and e-bikes
Not allowed: E-powered scooters, hoverboards, etc.

Multi-use paths
Allowed: Bikes, skateboards, rollerblades, e-bikes
Not allowed: E-scooters, hoverboards, etc.
Streets/bike lanes
Allowed: Bikes, e-bikes, e-scooters
Not allowed: Skateboards, rollerblades, one-wheels, etc.
Note: I think when the staff notes reference hoverboards, they mean the electric one-wheel things that you see occassionally, usually by dudes in full pads and motorcross helmets.
At least in my neighborhood.
Staff recommending allowing everything everywhere

Would maintain dismount zones in high-volume ped areas (Pearl Street Mall, Uni Hill, Boulder Junction) and would analyze intersections that could lead to collisions (per Boulder PD request) and mitigate those
I should clarify that staff is "exploring" allowing everything everywhere. Not a formal recommendation yet, since council isn't making a decision tonight.
Did you know: The current speed limit in crosswalks is 8 mph
Some good slides in the presentation from public feedback (Be Heard Boulder) on allowing human- and electric-powered vehicles on sidewalks and multi-use paths.

Biggest concern is how fast they go.
Though less concern on multi-use paths than on sidewalks.
Even less concern over allowing skateboards, one-wheels, etc. on streets.
"Which wheels go where?" was the name of that survey. ~250 responses.
Crash data, 2015-2019
Total severe crashes ranging from 40 to 61 annually

Total severe bike crashes ranging from 16 to 27 annually

Total severe crashes involving a bike was between 27% and 49% of all severe annual crashes
Total severe crashes, bike vs. bike on a multi-use path was between 0% and 14% of severe annual bike crashes, and between 0% and 5% of total severe annual crashes

There were no severe bike vs. bike crashes on a sidewalk
There were no severe bike vs. pedestrian crashes on a multi-use path

There were no severe bike vs. pedestrian crashes on a sidewalk
Total severe crashes involving a vehicle vs. bike entering a crosswalk from a multi-use path was between 13% and 19% of severe annual bike crashes, and between 3% and 8% of total severe annual crashes
Total severe crashes involving a vehicle vs. bike entering a crosswalk from a sidewalk was between 5% and 11% of severe annual bike crashes, and between 2% and 5% of total severe annual crashes
TAB supports allowing human- and e-powered vehicles everywhere. Important to be less restrictive to shift away from single-occupancy vehicle trips.
We may hear from them later.
"I've observed various flavors of electric devices on multi-use paths," Weaver says. Wants to know how fast the electric unicycles go, bc he's seen people really zipping on those in full pads and helmet.

Kemp: "I know that exact daredevil you're talking about right now."
Wait, this is just one guy?
Kemp says those are typically capped at 20mph but they can be modified to go faster.
Weaver: How does Boulder PD communicate speed limits on sidewalks and multi-use paths?
Kemp: There's a 15 mph speed limit on multi-use paths. We could do a better job of posting that. Typically, we get all that information out through social media.
"We have to go full court press to really get the word out there" if we change the rules. Educate people on the limits, audibly saying "On your left" when passing, putting up signs.
Bill Cowern, former interim transportation director, jumping in. "I imagine we would probably need to treat our sidewalks much the way we do our residential streets ... and post speed limits" on places where we know people are speeding.
Sidewalk speed limit signs. Are those a thing?
Wallach: The BeHeard Boulder survey.... are you considering that statistically valid?

"It struck me on a thin read on which to make judgements as to community receptivity."
No, Kemp says, it's a questionnaire. But it did generate a lot of responses compared to many BeHeard surveys. "It does help us understand what the concerns are."

Wallach: Do you have plans for something more systematic?
Yes, Kemp says. We're planning that.
Friend: It's great we're making dismount zones more clear, but there aren't multi-use paths everywhere downtown, or bike lanes on every street. We're asking people to ride their bikes on the street.
Her q: How did we decide where dismount zones were?
Kemp: It's where there is high pedestrian volume. We realize some of the streets downtown don't have a low-stress option, and that's something we need to work on.
Friend wants to know what TAB said.
Hutchinson: We mainly talked about how difficult it is to know where the dismount zones are.
Friend: Why is 15 mph our speed limit on multi-use paths?
There's an international standard for e-bikes of 20 mph, she says. Have we thought to match our multi-use path limit to that, since e-bikes are becoming such a thing?
While acknowledging that might not be a "super popular" suggestion.
Cowern: I can't tell you the origin on the 15 mph speed limit. It's been in city code "for quite some time. I can tell you we have not talked about increasing it."
Cowern: Just bc an e-bike can go 20 mph doesn't mean we want them to go 20 mph on a system with a lot of pedestrians. It's probably best they do that on the road. We get "a fair number of complaints" from ppl walking on the paths about bikes going too fast.
Can people really tell the difference between 15 and 20 mph of a passing bike? I cannot but I suck at those things.

I can, however, tell when someone is going too fast, as anyone in my neighborhood can tell you. I'm THAT bitch.
Kemp: We do need some bike slow zones.
Friend: Makes sense to me.
Friend: Did TAB look at the e-bikes / paths speed mismatch?
Hutchinson: Not specifically.
Young: Would the dismount zone match other restrictions in this area, like the smoke-free zone on the Pearl Street Mall? (At least, I think that's what she asked)
Kemp doesn't know, but calls it a "great question" and vows to look into it.
Young: Is there a "yield hierarchy" of who yields to whom?
Kemp: If you're using a device, you're supposed to yield to pedestrians or someone in a wheelchair. Idk that we've spelled it out in detail, but we could look at that.
Kemp: "Anybody should yield to slower-moving people on the multi-use path."
Swetlik attempts to lead the meeting and Yates is like, Nah, I'mma do what I want.
Omg, Yates bringing up boating.
"Rich, white people reference" should be a space on city council BINGO
Yates has a four-part hierarchy for transportation.
Peds first
Human-powered devices second
Powered devices "where the control is well established" like e-bikes come next
"Lowest priority" for Yates is powered devices "with little track record" for safety and control
Brockett breaking Swetlik's rules, too. What a rebel.
Brockett: We need to expand options for various mobility devices "but we need to be careful about safety."

Also "not 100% sure" the suggested dismount boundaries are what we want to use. "We don't have a good low-stress bicycle network" throughout downtown.
Let's change the dismount zones to reflect that, Brockett says, where pedestrian volumes aren't that high. Why is Boulder Junction even included? There's not a lot of ppl walking around there.
Nobody respecting Swetlik's attempts at organization. Weaver giving his two cents and then peace-ing out "for personal reasons."
Weaver likes using the general improvement district bounds for dismount zones bc it will be easier to put up signs.
Likes human-powered devices on sidewalks but not electric devices there, just multi-use paths
Doesn't want to change speed limit on paths
It's already enough to "scare" pedestrians, Weaver says.
Bro, I have PTSD and even I don't scare that easily.

Plus, remember the data? No serious crashes between bikes and peds on multi-use paths in the last 5 years.
Weaver: Electric-powered devices should stick to the bike lane, he says.
Dang, didn't need that "he says"
Sorry, my doggos are distracting me.
With their adorableness.
Have you ever seen a sadder looking sack of pup? She is full of ennui.
Anyway, back to the meeting. Young also doesn't want to raise the speed limit on paths. It's too much of a speed differential between pedestrians and bikes, she says.
And she agrees with Yates' hierarchy.
Friend: I wish we had the data on a 15 mph vs 20 mph speed limit and not just go with our gut on that.
Also wants to refine the dismount zones. "The goal is that you need to slow the bikes down when you are dealing with heavy pedestrian traffic wherever you are."
Do we need these "rigid" restrictions or do we need education? she asks.
Nagle likes where Friend is going. We may need to adjust as we go.

One of the things I always hear is bikes not signaling, etc., she says. Does... does she not ever use the paths herself?
Or maybe she's just sharing the feedback she gets. Meh.
Wallach: "I have a grave concern about putting electric powered vehicles on sidewalks, generally. ... Some of these pedestrians are going to be children or the elderly or other people who are not as nimble in getting out of the way of a ... careening ... electric apparatus."
"Some of them should probably be restricted to residential streets and bike lanes. ... Sidewalks are something of a bridge too far for me."
Joseph: "I have seen a few of those electric bikes. And it's pretty scary. And I was startled."
Not sure about allowing e-bikes on the multi-use paths.

Reminder: They already are and have been since 2004.
Joseph: "I think again it's how do we use our streets. We tend to prioritize cars. ... I would prefer all these vehicles to be on bike lanes. ... We don't have the space or the street management. That's where we should start first."
Bc if we don't have space for peds and bikes, we are going to have conflicts between peds and bikes, Joseph says.
Yates is getting all physics-y to refute Friend's bringing up of the 20 mph. "Incremental changes in speed limits have a more than linear effect when there's impact or collision."

20 mph is not 1/3 worse than 15 mph; it's almost double, he says.
Friend: "I feel like we're quibbling over leftovers. ... Cars get all the space. What would be best is if we were creating protected bike lanes downtown. ... We're moving in a good direction but it's not expansive thinking."
Swetlik: I agree this is fixing with a band-aid what the major transportation issues in the city are. But it needs to be addressed.
Reminder: The transportation budget was cut 29.5% in 2021 from 2020 levels. (And none of ya'll showed up to speak to that at the budget hearings.)
Swetlik suggests partnering with CU to make sure they are educating students when they move to town. Maybe a 10-question test or similar.

"Just so everybody knows the rules when they get here."
He's summarizing now: Maybe work a bit more on dismount zones, use a hierarchy to prioritize peds and slower-moving vehicles, some concern about e-powered vehicles on sidewalks.
That's it for this one and for tonight. 8:30 p.m. finish. What the what!

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