Tuesday, December 15, 2015

SLS Intern Contribution: The UC San Diego Bike Guide

By SLS Legal Research and Writing Intern Devon Brooks

"architecture: geisel library" by Jonathan Cohen is licensed under CC BY-NC 2.0

          With classes that are 10 minutes apart and a campus that is 1,900~ acres, traveling by bike is convenient.  However, before you unlock your bike and pedal on over to Center Hall, there are some legal tidbits you should know.

            By decree of the California Department of Motor Vehicles, bicyclists have the same rights and responsibilities as motor vehicles and motorcycle drivers. Therefore, bicyclists are legally required to stop at red street lights and STOP signs. So next time you are at the STOP sign, such as the one at Mandeville Ln., pull the brakes to a complete stop or you will get a ticket. The UC Police Department actively cites these violations on Gilman Drive, so save yourself the money and stop at all STOP signs. 
Now that we have covered what to do on the road, let us talk about actually getting around UCSD on the pathways. As some UCSD bicyclists may know, Library Walk and Ridgewalk are dismount zones weekdays 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. This means you have to get off your bicycle and walk it. This is due to the fact that these pathways will get congested with pedestrian traffic, especially during passing periods to and from class. For the safety of your fellow Tritons, dismount your bike. You can also get a citation if you are found to be riding your bike on Library Walk and Ridgewalk during those times.
            So if you want to bike to Center Hall at 12pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays for class but cannot bike on Library Walk, what should you do? Use the new bike paths that opened this year! Since Library Walk and Ridgewalk are primarily for pedestrians, new bike paths along Peterson Hill and the Eucalyptus Grove (west of Student Health Services) have been created. These bike paths are a completely separated right-of-way designated for the exclusive use of bicycles and pedestrians with crossflows by motorists minimized,” also known as a Class I Bike Path (Section 890.4 of the Streets and Highways Code). However, these bike paths are primarily designed for bikes to get around campus, not pedestrians. Pedestrians use Library Walk and Ridgewalk, while bicyclists use these bike paths. There are sections for pedestrians to cross the bike path so please yield to those crossing. Finally, bicyclists should be aware of the 8 MPH speed limit on these bike paths. Be safe, be aware, and have fun cycling