Oldwick Intersection (Oldwick, NJ)/Emma

Aerial Perspective
Map Perspective
Photo of Main Crossing
Drawing of Designated Lanes

My town of Oldwick, New Jersey is home to many avid cyclists. On any given day, you will pass dozens of cyclists within a few miles, coasting through the sloping hills and winding back roads of our town. The scenic routes available here make it no surprise that so many residents have taken up cycling as a hobby, and that is has generated a large community amongst them. Especially on weekends, you can find groups of 10-20 cyclists stopping at our local general store for a post-ride refreshment, or taking part in a locally organized race for people of all ages.

One might expect that in a town with such a large volume of bike owners that the local infrastructure would support such a community. However, this is hardly the case, as seen in the above images depicting the primary intersection in Oldwick. Unlike the depiction of clearly organized bike, car, and pedestrian lanes of the Netherlands, Oldwick possesses only the basic level of road infrastructure. Four main pedestrian sidewalks can be seen, with a wide shoulder on the right hand side of the road. This shoulder is not even intended mainly for biking, but rather for street parking. While locals know to expect many cyclists on the road, visitors to our town can pose a serious threat to the safety of those biking. Our community has adapted certain etiquettes such as giving cyclists the right of way, or being cautiously patient when passing around them on a road, but people from out of town might not know to be slow when going around blind corners or twisting mountainous roads with poor visibility from thick forestation.

Thankfully there have not been many cases of incident between cars and cyclists in this area, but the danger is certainly present and many improvements can and should be made. As mentioned in the videos, transitions should be strengthened because currently the shoulder is the only area somewhat safe enough for cyclists, but it can often vary in width. Additionally, there is very little separation between biking and pedestrian crossings, so perhaps separate bike and pedestrian crossings could be created as seen in the junction designs in the Netherlands.

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