Category Archives: Considerations

Prose and Cons of new 2016 Bicycle Transportation Plan

The Cupertino Bicycle Pedestrian Commission recently had their new 2016 Bicycle Transportation Plan approved by City Council. This is by far the most ambitious Bicycle Transportation Plan ever put together in the city’s history… That said there are also some major deficiencies in this program. I will attempt to describe some of its features and vision then some of its major deficiencies which may have long term impacts upon making bicycle riding far more practical for most people in our city… Continue reading

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Raised Bicycle Lanes

Steve Hill on Next Door last year proposed having raised bicycle lanes at the level of sidewalks such as exist in parts of Europe.  I think this a very good idea on the busier streets of our city trafficked by … Continue reading

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A Bicycle Ride on the Stevens Creek Trail in Mountain View

Last week I had the opportunity to ride my bicycle on the Stevens Creek Train in Mountain View… Overall the trail was about 5 mile long and terminated at Shoreline where it intersected the Bay Trail, another very nice bicycle trail worth exploring later… The entire trail is paved and well maintained with a lot of wildlife, trees, and vegetation along the way. There are only a few spots where Steven Creek itself is visible until you approach the bay near Shoreline. It has the feel of being close to nature in spite of traffic noise, much nicer than the much shorter way overdeveloped Stevens Creek Trail in Cupertino. Continue reading

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Cupertino is Mostly about Education

You may well ask why I am talking about Education on a blog which is all about Bicycles and Growth? Well I’d like readers to understand the character of our city of Cupertino and one cannot really understand it without talking about Education. It is a large, perhaps the key, reason why people flock here to live… Continue reading

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The Deadly Third Rail of Growth

At the heart of any community of people is housing, a place where people live and feel a sense of home and belonging, a comfortable and familiar place to rest and be oneself. But jobs are ultimately the reason people move from location to location in order to secure their livelihoods. Some may claim that they moved to a specific location for other reason such as schools or more affordable houses but in essence it is the prospects of a good job that bring them to the area… Continue reading

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Union Pacific Railroad Trail Update

In November of 2014 I wrote a short blog post titled Union Pacific Railroad Trail for Bicycling and Walking. This infrequently used railroad track owned by the Union Pacific Railroad runs a considerable distance through Cupertino. The railroad runs to the Lehigh Cement Plant just outside Cupertino where about once a day it bring in petroleum coke to use as fuel for its huge rotary furnace. An unofficial trail called the Union Pacific Trail runs from Prospect Road and Stelling Road to the South next to Saratoga 3.4 miles to North Foothill Blvd. to the North ending at the Lehigh Cement Plant. Continue reading

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A Building Moratorium between Developments to Control Growth

Vallco business and shopping mall, with its proposed 2,000,000 sq. ft. of office space next door to the new Apple campus has been submitted for the city’s approval which would bring in more than 10,000 employees. The Oaks and Goodyear Tire proposals have just been submitted for consideration. The Target property has been purchased by a developer and will soon have a proposal as will Marina, Cupertino Village and many others. This onslaught of new construction and growth in our small city in a short space of time brings with it concerns of exploding traffic congestion … Continue reading

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What We Can All Do to Help Save Our Planet

The primary culprit of Climate Change is excessive Climate Change (CO2) being released into the atmosphere from the insatiable appetite of Our Affluent Lifestyle. There is almost no part of our lives that does not impact Climate Change from the goods we consume to the conveniences we treasure. So there are plenty of opportunities for each of us to mitigate Our Individual impact. It isn’t only about government regulating carbon emissions. It is also about each of us doing our part to reduce the use of energy that is responsible for greenhouse gas emissions… Continue reading

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Need for More Bicycle Trails

A bicycle trail is a bicycle route that is largely away from the sights and sounds of car traffic. It is typically made of asphalt but can be made of concrete or dirt and gravel. Bicycle trails are typically shared with walkers, joggers, and hikers. Many bicycle trails go through undeveloped portions of cities such as long creeks, railroad tracks, parks, and open spaces. And occasionally they pass through residential area to connect portions of trail not possible along the natural route such as a narrow creek or blocked by private property. Continue reading

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Comments on the Stevens Creek Trail Feasibility Study Meeting 12/15/2015

I attended the Stevens Creek Trail Feasibility Study Meeting on December 15 in the hopes that there would be a nice and safe bicycle and walking trail from Cupertino all the way up to the Shoreline in Mountain view. A consultant hired by the joint Park and Recreation Commission and Bicycle Pedestrian Commission gave a presentation of the results of the 2-3 year Stevens Creek Trail feasibility study and presented a number of route options in three sections around neighborhoods where the trail had to deviate from the creek to residential streets due to restrictions or property lines preventing the trail from going along the creek. Continue reading

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Smart Growth – A Personal Perspective

I actually devised Smart Growth independently (my form of it) around the summer of last year while the General Plan Amendment (GPA) was undergoing scrutiny around the summer of 2014. I had by then determined that car traffic would limit Cupertino’s ability to sustain growth for long and was trying to solve this problem. It became clear that replacing cars with bicycles was the right path so I developed a long range Vision of what Cupertino would look like without cars. Continue reading

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More Sustained Growth for Cupertino with Smart Growth

Smart Growth was originally developed to help cities undergoing rapid growth to do it in a more sustained manner with sensitivity to its impact on the environment. This started as a European concept but was easier because they had relatively limited urban sprawl. It is like a suitcase in which you need to pack your belonging more efficiently into a fixed container as you buy more souvenirs along the way. Continue reading

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Why Bicycles are So Beneficial to Cupertino

Cupertino it the epitome of an urban sprawl community that is trying to morph into a urban city. However urban sprawl, ideal for car, is not so for public transportation or walking. Its many winding mazed roads and dead-end streets make public transportation impractical near most streets and walking laboriously long. In the process it is undergoing dramatic growth and severe growing pains. But unlike a person growing up with a genetic road-map of how to grow Cupertino has no road-map. So it is growing more like a cancer cell out of control. Continue reading

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My Motives for Establishing this Blog

Some might get the wrong impressions that I want to improve our bicycle lanes to suit my purpose. After all aren’t I a frequent biker who simply wants our streets to be safer and easier to bike so I can more easily get around town? First let me start by saying that I am a very casual cyclist. On average I bicycle 1-3 times a week for about 30 min. each time primarily for exercise. Yes I’d love to bicycle around town a lot more but the amount of time and effort I am putting into popularizing biking simple is not worth the effort to simply make biking more available for myself. Continue reading

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The Case for Safer Bicycle Lanes

It seems intuitive to me but when talking to seasoned cyclists who use their bikes as their primary mode of transportation some think our streets quite safe. They are fit and have learned how to navigate the busy streets skillfully and safely. So I guess the test of that presumption is to ask if the major streets throughout town would be safe enough for their young children, wives, senior parents, or grandparents to bicycle routinely, assuming they were able to cycle and were not also seasoned cyclists. My objective is to draw many more casual cyclists, especially women, but also people of all ages to bicycle our streets as a means of shopping, dining, going to school, or simply enjoying the joys and exercise of bicycling. Continue reading

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Integrated Solution to Solving Growth and Traffic Congestion Problems

I recently watch the TED YouTube “A future beyond traffic gridlock” by Bill Ford of Ford Motor Co. It has relevance to Growth and increased Traffic in our city. I didn’t quit like Fords example of cars on intelligent networks because it lacked innovation in the use of other forms of transportation, but I’d expect that of a top auto executive. More cars, autonomous cars, and networked or not, are that much more space occupying our roads. One must look at even more long-term integrated mobility solutions that occupy far less space, reduce or eliminates the use of energy and production of greenhouse gases, and greatly reduce or eliminate traffic congestion. Continue reading

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The Case for Bicycles vs. Minibuses and Uber Cars

Designing a workable transportation system as an alternative to driving everywhere in town is a bit of a daunting challenge here in Cupertino.  Its urban sprawl creates public transportation design nightmares because of the complex mazes of small interconnecting streets … Continue reading

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Things that Discourage Me from Biking in Cupertino

This website promotes more biking in Cupertino to help solve its traffic and pollution problems by creating a more growth sustainable and green community.  It cannot solve all such problems but it can play a valuable role to mitigate them.  … Continue reading

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Those Invasive Dashed Bicycle Lanes Before Intersections

[See my Comment at the bottom] Every time I ride my bicycle around Cupertino I encounter these dashed bicycle lane markings starting about 50 feet before every intersections where bicycle lanes exist permitting cars to share the bicycle lanes I often feel offended a … Continue reading

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Liability Kills Innovation and Solutions

We in Cupertino live in the heart of Innovation, Silicon Valley.  Apple has its headquarters and largest R&D facility here.  Yet when you ask the city to implement biking safety enhancements which are not mainstream in California they say they … Continue reading

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