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Streets of Kent

 
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jabailo



Joined: 20 Mar 2006
Posts: 1273
Location: Kent (East Hill), WA

PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2007 5:23 pm    Post subject: Streets of Kent Reply with quote

This year having gotten back on my bicycle and even commuting to work (6 miles, but 3 miles of very steep hill on the east-west), I started making noise to the Mayor of Kent, Suzette Cooke, and the City Council. She responded, as a good politician would, by appointing me to the Bicycle Advisory Board. The Board is comprised of local people and has city employee participation to help decide on policies and planning to improve bicycling conditions.

I believe the City Mayor and Council and planners are sincere and doing a great job on planning and improvement, however, as someone on Kent East Hill who has walked and biked these streets for 6 years, I am still looking to the solution of immediate problems.

I have started documenting trouble spots and put them in a Flikr collection here:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/47446064@N00/collections/72157601222000777/
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Looking for postcards of that favorite place? Family origins? Or that perfect vacation, except for the photos?
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brian-hansen
Site Admin


Joined: 17 Mar 2006
Posts: 712
Location: Oregon

PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2007 1:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

John-

I applaud your initiative and hope you get good results from it.

Knowing you, I'd say the chances are good that your efforts could
lead to some positive changes on the "streets of Kent" (sounds like
the name of a television police drama!).

I have a meta-recommendation, though. I hated Flickr. You might
not believe (maybe you would) all the problems I went through trying
to read the comments on your photos. I guess I'll save it for another
time to write up all the things wrong with that user-interface, but
suffice it to say that a lot of folks besides me will have problems
getting the gist of your story.

[Incidentally, if you know of some way I can make money telling
companies what is wrong with their websites and how to fix the
problems, please let me know. I'd be busy from now on!]

So, I recommend you use http://www.you-saw-it-here-first.com.
I set up an album for you to use to post your photos to. Some have
reported difficulty in getting login access, so if you have troubles
with that, let me know, and I'll send you (privately) a login that I
know works. YSIHF is so much simpler and more direct than Flickr
for this application. I know it would be more effective at conveying
your ideas to a larger audience.

-Brian
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jabailo



Joined: 20 Mar 2006
Posts: 1273
Location: Kent (East Hill), WA

PostPosted: Thu Aug 09, 2007 5:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I throughly agree with you on Flickr -- very hard to use and to view!

I'm signing up for YSIHF now!
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jabailo



Joined: 20 Mar 2006
Posts: 1273
Location: Kent (East Hill), WA

PostPosted: Fri Aug 10, 2007 8:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, while I'm getting a new photo site set up, I thought I'd switch to text and offer some list of indignities that I see on my morning commute, specifically, today, Fridays.


West on 256th, Corner of 104th Avenue

This is one of the most impossible corners to bicycle, yet it's my access point to getting down the hill. I prefer Canyon to James because it cuts down the Hill at an angle and so the slope is less steep.

The problem is that this intersection is a no win for bicyclists (or pedestrians).

The cut for drivers to make a right turn is the problem. This cut gives them the idea they have the right of way and that they can make continuous travel into 104th northbound.

Someone should tell them they still need to stop for bikes and people in the crosswalk as they come careening to the rigth.

If I pretend to be a car and drive in the standard right lane, avoiding the sidewalk and the cut, I get honked at by cars! (It happened this morning) who think I should be in the cut or the sidewalk!

The one good thing about this street is that when (and if) the walk light is on, I can't get hit by the left turning traffic from 256th eastbound. However, the right turning traffic from 104th is problematic.

In fact, all right turning traffic is problematic especially because the average height of vehicles in Kent seems to be about 10 feet (joking).


Downhill on Canyon

I refuse to ride in the street here. Too many speeders, too many wild riders. As a car I always go the prescribed 40 mph...yet, I get tailgated in both lanes by speeders. Where's the radar guns? The 30 mph zone at the bottom which is firmly visible by an automated speed indicator is regularly ignored. Why bother telling people if we don't give tickets??

The sidewalk is dirty and filled with street grist. I go on the brakes to avoid skids. Of course there is glass. There is also a stream of water that has been there for the past two months (!) -- is this a pipe, or someone watering the lawn. It's full of grass debris and is moldy and slippery.

The intersection with 94th avenue is one of the most dangerous ever conceived. Drivers hurl downhill and then make a hairpin turn -- rarely pausing to look both ways. Like the intersection at the top of the hill, there is the right cut that makes drivers think they can ignore pedestrians or bikes.

Bottom of Hill

For a "downtown" it still seems like Land of the Cars. I cross all streets at my peril -- both on bike and on foot. Again, it seems like people have never heard that the crosswalk has the right of way! Not only that but drivers fail to look both ways, and turn at high speeds. I'll devote a separate post to issues with walking, biking downtown...
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Visit the Instant Postcard Collection @ http://instant-postcard-collection.com
Looking for postcards of that favorite place? Family origins? Or that perfect vacation, except for the photos?
Researching your dissertation? Serious collector? Just looking for something neat?
You've found the right place to add to your existing collection, or to start a new one.
jabailo



Joined: 20 Mar 2006
Posts: 1273
Location: Kent (East Hill), WA

PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2007 7:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just uploaded my images to

http://www.you-saw-it-here-first.com/v/Streets+of+Kent/

It's fantastic! I don't see how Flickr can even stay in business!

The organization and easy of display are much better -- and I don't get stuck with crazy URLs with GUIDs in the string.

I hope that Dream Host gives you enough space because they're about 750K a piece.
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brian-hansen
Site Admin


Joined: 17 Mar 2006
Posts: 712
Location: Oregon

PostPosted: Sat Aug 11, 2007 7:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm glad you like it! Me too. Much easier.

One tip: if you put your initial comments into the description, then I think
they'll show up on the album page, and more prominently on the image page.

Also, instead of image0044, for instance, I recommend you put the street
address/intersection.

Finally, the photo details, while cool, are a bit of distraction.

I imagine you know how to make these changes, but if you don't know,
and want to, let me know.

-Brian
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jabailo



Joined: 20 Mar 2006
Posts: 1273
Location: Kent (East Hill), WA

PostPosted: Sun Aug 12, 2007 9:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Finally, the photo details, while cool, are a bit of distraction.


I, as well, am fascinated that this detail is in the image files, or figured out via the app, but agree, the typical user would be distracted and it's at too high a place of prominence.

Quote:

Also, instead of image0044, for instance, I recommend you put the street
address/intersection.


Good idea...I was looking for a way to rename files after upload, but did not find it.

Also, for Flickr I have this third party app that lets you drag and drop images onto a window and they auto-upload. I wonder if "Album" permits such access, or is there direct ftp...


I created some domains

http://readit.texeme.com
http://sawit.texeme.com
http://antimeme.texeme.com

That redirect to the YOU- sites.
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View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail
Visit the Instant Postcard Collection @ http://instant-postcard-collection.com
Looking for postcards of that favorite place? Family origins? Or that perfect vacation, except for the photos?
Researching your dissertation? Serious collector? Just looking for something neat?
You've found the right place to add to your existing collection, or to start a new one.
AlexFrancisBurchard



Joined: 12 Oct 2010
Posts: 1
Location: Chicago, Illinois

PostPosted: Tue Oct 12, 2010 11:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I would like to submit that Riding (down) on Canyon is the least scary large suburban street to ride on as on a bike it is EASY to attain 35 miles per hour and not feel like you are in the way. The Sidewalks are far scarier as they try to buck you at every driveway.

And Riding down James is just FUN. 50 Mph on a bike!
while illegal, and probably dangerous, meh. Even if one sticks to the limit, James is also not scary, it is just a fantastic ride (down)

Riding up, perhaps, is a good time to stick with the sidewalks on canyon though, despite the bike lane, I am one of those speeders (when I drive) I wouldn't want to bike next to me. (although usually I use the left lane when driving)

I lived off 94th ave for years 15-17(06-08 I think), and I nearly hit a bicyclist once pulling onto canyon as the bicyclist decided to pull right up next to me where I couldn't see him(in the dark no less), then try to go at the same time I went when the light turned green.

As Such, when I bike I almost Always stay behind traffic at lights, pulling up next to traffic is inconsiderate, and a good way to get hit, because they frankly shouldn't have to expect you to be in the shoulder next to them, its a Shoulder. Not a lane.

I live in Chicago now, People here drive FAR crazier (and thus more awesome) than Seattleites, and I feel perfectly safe every time I get on my bike and go through the city. (and I bike in the loop, downtown, where people drive the cRAZIEST)(I live at the land end of navy pier) It's just awesome fun. And as long as I obey the rules of the road, I stay pretty darn safe, even with all the CRAZY Taxis.
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