Tony Valente ends the bike-share tour of Spain in Valencia:
 
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VALENCIA
JCDecaux manages Valencia’s bike-share system – Valenbisi. Bike-share stations were well located close to transit and in principle plazas, but technology was an issue as it was a struggle to gain access to the system. Repeated attempts to create a profile and withdraw a bike were denied in multiple stations.  Eventually I gave up.
val-3Valencia’s cost structure makes it a bit of hybrid since short-term memberships are available, but cost 13 Euro for seven days access which provide up to 30 minutes free rides, with a one Euro charge for the next 30 minutes, followed by three Euros for the following 60-minute blocks. In comparison, renting a bike was nine Euros per hour, so there was some potential for savings if you could get access to the system. I could not …
It was unfortunate because Valencia had by far the best network of separated bike lanes widely dispersed throughout the city. The lanes also connect to a park created in the 1950s when Valencia decided to divert the Rio Turia after a disastrous flood. In its place they created kilometres of recreation space that includes bike lanes and running trails, now called Jardin del Turia.
val-1This corridor forms a spine for bike travel connecting central Valencia to the Mediterranean. Ramps link the former river bed with city streets with separated bike lanes sometimes at street level, but otherwise on the sidewalk.
We cycled all over Valencia in these lanes and loved it. In Valencia we felt very safe riding on well planned infrastructure.
 
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Keep the speed down and he will smile for you too.

Comments

  1. The happy/not happy dynamic sign for cycling speed is great! We could use it here where the Seaside route approaches the crosswalk to Science World, and nearby at the confluence of the Seaside and Ontario bikeways. Both locations have an abundance of cyclists and pedestrians with former generally being rather unyielding.

    1. No. I think what’s happening is that people when walking are not recognizing that someone cycling is slowing down to let them pass. Meanwhile the person cycling is waiting and waiting and then eventually figures that the person walking is letting them go and so goes. This gets interpreted sometimes by the one walking (or standing at that point) as the person cycling to be unyielding even though they had been yielding and politely waiting for the person to cross.
      This has nothing to do with speed and has to do with unfamiliarity with the nature of bicycle movement.

      1. Sorry, it has everything to do with speed in many cases. A majority of cyclists bomb through those crosswalks (especially at Science World). It’s pretty clear that the intent is to have a faster trip by intimidating the pedestrians (it’s a marked, zebra-striped crosswalk) into waiting for cyclists to pass. Some cyclists definitely behave much better, but a brief period of observations would show that they are the minority. I walk and I bike and when I do the latter I always try to behave as courteously as possible to more vulnerable road/path users, just as I hope motorists would do for me. The no-nuance “the cyclist is always right” attitude that often comes out in transportation discussions in this region is maddening and just serves to alienate non-cyclists who might otherwise have a more open mind to the cycling cause.

    2. What is required at that crosswalk (and others) is communication between people walking and people on bikes. Then it works much better for all. Yes, there are cyclists who don’t stop for pedestrians. There are also pedestrians who walk into the crosswalk without looking or necessarily leaving enough space for a person on a bike to stop.
      Eye contact, a nod, a wave, all work to make both much safer.
      And one of the issues at that particular crosswalk at Science World is simply the volume. There is a new separated bike lane for Quebec St that has been proposed, which will move faster commuting cyclists coming from the Central Valley Greenway, and the Ontario bikeway, away from the pedestrian zone, leaving that bike path near the water for recreational riders, and those going slower. This will help as it has in other locations.

    3. Too many cyclists on the Science World path for crosswalk to work. It was already obvious years ago when cyclist numbers rose dramatically. I don’t know why it is taking the city so long to put a bike path on Quebec. There was a partial path on Quebec during the Olympics, when the Science World area was closed off to bikes.

  2. Unfortunate you couldn’t get access. Valencia is indeed that rare Spanish city where cycling is a pleasure. Beyond the river trails there are also some nice paths into the countryside. Last time I was there I rented a bike for the duration (a week or so) and I think it was quite economical. Going again in October so I hope I can get access to the bike share. In my experience, using a foreign credit card in Spain online is very difficult. Buying a train ticket on renfe’s website a lesson in patience and calling banks. So maybe that was the problem?

    1. Thanks Doug – we rented bikes, but yea it definitely would have been easier with Valenbisi. I don’t know what the issue was frankly…I tried different cards, but nothing seemed to work.

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