AB 1193, the devils in the details
So, some more detail concerns (the devil is in the details?) about AB 1193 from CABO director discussions…
Existing Streets and Highway Code §890.6 requires Caltrans, “in cooperation with county and city governments,” to “establish minimum safety design criteria for the planning and construction of bikeways.” §890.8 requires Caltrans alone to “establish uniform specifications and symbols for signs, markers, and traffic control devices to designate bikeways, regulate traffic, improve safety and convenience for bicyclists, and alert pedestrians and motorists of the presence of bicyclists on bikeways.”
If a new definition for a Class IV bikeway is added to §890.4, these provisions would automatically apply to it. The new subdivision §891(c), requiring that Caltrans “in cooperation with local agencies, shall establish minimum safety design criteria for Class IV bikeways, as designated in Section 890.4,” may therefore be redundant. Furthermore, it isn’t entirely consistent with existing law:
It specifies “local agencies,” which could be construed as either a broader or narrower scope than “county and city governments” in §890.6.
It refers only to minimum safety and design criteria, without mentioning planning and construction, as in §890.6.
It omits the traffic control device provisions of §890.8.
It doesn’t logically fit as a subdivision of §891, which deals with compliance with standards, not their establishment.
The compliance subdivision §891(a) refers to standards established by §§890.6 and 890.8, not by §891(c).
The bill should be rewritten to reconcile these inconsistencies.
Defining Class IV bikeways in §890.4 before any standards have been established for them creates an ambiguity. Are they not to be constructed until standards have been established? Or may they be constructed freely, because there are as yet no standards that need to be complied with?
Currently, “cycletracks” would be subject to the design standards of Class I bike paths or Class II bike lanes. But if they can be categorized in a new class of their own, it could be claimed that Class I and Class II standards no longer apply.
It might be better to defer adding this definition to the code until the standards for it have been developed.