Newsroom > News > Press Releases > Policies for Pedaling from the Chaddick Institute at DePaul University
December 12, 2016 /
Posted in: College of Liberal Arts and Social Sciences /
to being fast, many cyclists engage in safe riding behavior at intersections
that is often not consistent with the law, find DePaul researchers. At four-way
stops, just 4 percent of cyclists came to a full stop. However, many cyclists slow
down to yield at stop signs or stop then proceed safely at a red light — a
practice enacted in Idaho in 1982 that is commonly known as the Idaho stop.
"Some of the rules of the road for biking are out of
sync with the realities of the way people move from place to place,” said
Joseph Schwieterman, director of the institute and a co-author of the study,
adding that the Idaho stop is widely considered to be safe. “This study draws
attention to practical ways to deal with these problems — one of which is explore
allowing the Idaho stop at four-way stop intersections." This change could
allow law enforcement to focus instead on cyclists who pose legitimate safety
risks, said Schwieterman.
DePaul graduate students Jenna Caldwell, Riley O’Neil and
Dana Yanocha are co-authors of the study, which calls for Chicago to lower
fines and offer diversion programs to cyclists.
“While Chicago has made tremendous strides in building bike
infrastructure to accommodate the ever-growing cycling population, policymakers
should continue to improve upon and implement policies that keep riders safe,”
Researchers conducted field observations of 875 cyclists in
Chicago and found:
remarkable rise in bicycle travel in Chicago should be celebrated as one of our
city's great success stories of recent years,” said Schwieterman. "This
success, however, is creating a need for new strategies to deal with the traffic
flow on regular streets, bike lanes, the trails."
Chaddick Institute for Metropolitan Development at DePaul University
contributes research and educational programs that enable visionary planning in
Chicago and beyond. The study “Policies for Pedaling” can be found at http://bit.ly/chaddickresearch.