Google added a Bike There option!!!!!

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erok
Keymaster
#

check it out!!!

http://www.google.com/maps

before hitting “get directions,” make sure to choose bicycling

this was to coincide with the national bike summit that we’re at


ieverhart
Participant
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Whoa! Awesome!


erok
Keymaster
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yeah, i hope it works


sloaps
Participant
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All the trails light up in neon green! But, it’s saying 20 minutes from southside to strip, which is true if you run red lights through downtown.


erok
Keymaster
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i really like how you can pick different options


saltm513
Participant
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Do you have to have a google account to view this? Somehow the link isn’t happening for me. I only see “by car, by public transit, by walking.”


timito
Participant
#

Now I’m allowed to ride through Allegheny cemetery, cause Google told me too.


robbie
Participant
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If people see problems please report them so that the directions get better.


rsprake
Participant
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One of the routes it picks for my commute is almost exactly what I have been doing lately. But the other two rely heavily on Penn Ave.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
#

I tried my McCandless to FedEx route. It put me on PA65 from Emsworth to Sewickley (legal, yuck) but ignored the I-79 bridge (legal, OK) which would have taken off a bunch of miles. I told them about bikes being explicitly allowed on I-79.

Edit: Bikes can get over to Neville Island on I-79, but I don’t think they can get over to the west shore, so this might not be wrong. (There is no “swim across west channel with bicycle” directive.)


Ohiojeff
Participant
#

I tried it from my house in Squirrel Hill to my work downtown. It was bizzare. It suggested I head down Murray to Forward, then thread my way through the Parkway East Interchange on Beechwood (!!) and then (eventually) down Greenfield Ave, and when it got to Saline street it suggested I go all the way up to Big Jims to pick up the trail and then double back on myself to the underpass. Leave aside my preferred route through the park and down Joncaire, even Beacon Street to the park to Greenfield Avenue would have been a vast improvement. They need some traffic flow metrics or something in their process because that Forward/Beechwood/Parkway east interchange would not be pretty in the morning. I’ll report it.


rsprake
Participant
#

It looks like they haven’t integrated much data for Pittsburgh yet. If you watch the intro video there are different colors for different bike friendly roads and the only colors we get are for the river trails. No bike lanes, sharrows etc.


Mick
Participant
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Wow!

This is excellent. Biking hits the 21st century!

I put in the Morgantown destination that I did last spring and might do this year.

“Make right turn at Great Allegheny Passage.” Great! Just wonderful.

Less wonderful is that it takes me on State Highway 51, inoccuously described as “Pittsburgh Rd,” from Perryopolis to Uniontown.

<Clint Eastwood voice> “Feeling LUCKY, punk?”

It shows a gap (as it were ) in the Great Allegheny Passage between Savage Mt and Cumberland. I wonder if that is because the tunnel is closed for winter?

D.C. is a wonderful spaghetti pile of green strands.

Mick


gimpPAC
Participant
#

Now I’m allowed to ride through Allegheny cemetery, cause Google told me too.

Best quote ever, haha

Google is the schiz…


brian j
Participant
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I just checked my commute (Morningside to South Side), and it was essentially my commute home (HMB, Jail Trail, Junction Hollow), including my favored zig-zag through some alleys to avoid parts of Negley Avenue. Very nice.


dmtroyer
Participant
#

hmm, my highland park -> downtown commute suggests darting along a lot of alleyways through garfield/friendship, lawrenceville and the strip. waiting for them to integrate some pittsburgh data.


mark
Participant
#

glad its there, and if they take feedback into consideration it has great potential, but this is the route from my house to the southside… 34 turns… uck:

1. Head southwest on Butler St toward 48th St 479 ft

2. Turn right at 48th St 167 ft

3. Turn left at Modoc St 0.1 mi

4. Turn left at 47th St 423 ft

5. Turn right at Eden Way 0.3 mi

6. Turn left at 43rd St 43 ft

7. Turn right at Eden Way 0.1 mi

8. Turn left at Almond Way 190 ft

9. Turn right at Butler St 0.2 mi

10. Turn right at Lodi Way 177 ft

11. Turn left at Mineral Way 135 ft

12. Turn left at 38th St 59 ft

13. Turn right at Mulberry Way 1.1 mi

14. Turn left at 26th St 33 ft

15. Turn right at Mulberry Way 0.4 mi

16. Turn left at 20th St 138 ft

17. Turn right at Penn Ave 0.8 mi

18. Turn left at 10th St 315 ft

19. Continue onto William Penn Pl 0.3 mi

20. Turn right at 5th Ave 59 ft

21. Turn left at Cherry Way 0.2 mi

22. Turn left at Blvd of the Allies 272 ft

23. Turn right at Grant St 200 ft

24. Turn left toward Great Allegheny Passage (Trail System Overview)/Great Allegheny Passage – Three Rivers Heritage Trail System 82 ft

25. Turn right at 1st Ave 230 ft

26. Turn right at Great Allegheny Passage (Trail System Overview)/Great Allegheny Passage – Three Rivers Heritage Trail System 0.1 mi

27. Turn left to stay on Great Allegheny Passage (Trail System Overview)/Great Allegheny Passage – Three Rivers Heritage Trail System 0.4 mi

28. Turn right toward Great Allegheny Passage (Trail System Overview)/Great Allegheny Passage – Three Rivers Heritage Trail System 52 ft

29. Turn right at Great Allegheny Passage (Trail System Overview)/Great Allegheny Passage – Three Rivers Heritage Trail System 0.5 mi

30. Turn left to stay on Great Allegheny Passage (Trail System Overview)/Great Allegheny Passage – Three Rivers Heritage Trail System 0.3 mi

31. Turn right to stay on Great Allegheny Passage (Trail System Overview)/Great Allegheny Passage – Three Rivers Heritage Trail System 52 ft

32. Slight left at S 9th St 0.1 mi

33. Turn left at Bingham St 335 ft

34. Turn left at S 10th St

Destination will be on the left


Ohiojeff
Participant
#

Okay, when I went back to look again and started dragging the route around (they make it easy to do this) the whole route shifts to better option. When I pulled the road onto Beacon Street it got better. When I pulled it into the park, it got nearly my usual commute. So moving the route away from a street you know to be bad might help.


lolly
Participant
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i wrote about this on my b l o g and someone suggested (not in the comments) that i should just be happy about the fact that it exists, and not really worry about the routes, or complain!

14 or 24 turns is too many for a simple errand. i like that it will inspire more people to consider riding when they see that it is possible, even google says it’s possible. (like riding through the allegheny cemetery!!!)

http://onenightlemonadestand.wordpress.com


timito
Participant
#

yeah, it’s a great device, I like the fact you can move the route around by dragging it, they’ll get the bugs worked out, and it’s way better then nothing.


mark
Participant
#

bike pgh: tell them where sharrows, state designated bikeways, and bike lanes in the city are! they don’t appear to know


KBrooks
Participant
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This is a great first step!

Yeah, echoing Mark… would Google take input from BikePgh (or other local advocacy groups)? Seems like the Pittsburgh info could be greatly improved with some hints from the BikePgh map.

Tried out my commute, and it suggested going down Penn for a long stretch rather than Hamilton/Dallas/Reynolds… but it had some more reasonable suggestions I might try out.


scott
Keymaster
#

Google told us this morning that they are definitely into getting feedback from advocates. One of the leads on the project has been a member of SFBC for ten years.


rsprake
Participant
#

It would be awesome if you can get the PGH bike map data integrated.


Kordite
Participant
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I put in my route from home in Churchill to Downtown. Google completely missed the little trail that connects Kensington St to S. Dunfermline at the bowling greens in Frick Park. Great little shortcut that I have already logged with them with the “report a problem” button.

The other thing is that it took me down Reynolds to 5th Avenue and then into Oakland instead of what I think is a better route of going up Wilkins Ave and then then zig-zag through some Squirrel Hill back streets to get to Schenley Park. Climbing up Wilkins is a bit more of a hill but the street is wider and has less traffic than the otherwise flat 5th Avenue, so I would choose the one over the other. When I grabbed the trail off of 5th and over to Schenley Park at the Golf Course, the route through Squirrel Hill looked much more reasonable.

Google then takes you down Diulus Way at the corner of S. Bouquet and Dawson to get to Junction Hollow. Diulus has a green line so they think that it’s a trail mainline but really it’s one of Pittsburgh’s famous “paper streets”, isn’t it? Just steps and not a bikable trail. It should show up in a walking route but not a biking one.

I don’t know how they weight their routes but the inclusion of the Bike Pgh maps would help. The fact that it exists at all is a great start.


rsprake
Participant
#

They take hills into consideration which is probably why they avoided Wilkins. That initial section from Fifth can be a real bear.


Ohiojeff
Participant
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Diulus is definitely steps.

When I manually map out a bike route somewhere I make extensive use of Satellite photos but I suppose that’s where the human brain still excels over the computer one. You can tell if a road it suitable at a glance, software might have to work harder.


rachel_ding
Participant
#

I did my fairly simple commute from Bloomfield/Garfield to The Midwife Center in the Strip. It takes me entirely on allyways except from 37th-34th street it has me on Penn. I never thought about taking Woolslayer towards the Strip.. it might be fun to try sometime.

The route did not reflect the new sharrows on Penn. I always felt pretty safe on Penn through the Strip, but those sharrows make me feel even more legit. I left a comment with the google people so that they know there are sharrows there (and gave them bikepgh’s e-mail address in case they had any questions!)


jimjoe
Participant
#

I can get walking directions from Greensburg, Pa. to Brisbane, Australia that include pieces like this:

639. Kayak across the Pacific Ocean

Entering Japan 3,879 mi

640. Turn right toward ??263?? 0.3 mi,

but no biking directions. I suppose it is still in beta.


salty
Participant
#

Rumour has it there may be some Googlers on this very message board, although they may not be able to speak “officially”.

The “report a problem” link in the lower right corner of the map is definitely the best way to send feedback. FWIW, I do know that the Pittsburgh bike lanes are in the works but I don’t know when they will be available.


rachel_ding
Participant
#

Ooo! Awesome. Thanks for that bit of information.


Mick
Participant
#

@stu There is no “swim across west channel with bicycle” directive

@jimjoe …no biking directions. I suppose it is still in beta.

The solution to all your travel needs!

http://www.wicycle.com/canoe_woody_wagon_bicycle_trailer.php


ieverhart
Participant
#

They take hills into consideration which is probably why they avoided Wilkins. That initial section from Fifth can be a real bear.

Yeah, but on the way from Squirrel Hill to Shadyside it’s not a problem at all. I might take another route for the return trip, but I would definitely take Wilkins from Squirrel Hill to Shadyside or Oakland, just as I usually get Downtown from Oakland by rolling right down Fifth Avenue.


StuInMcCandless
Participant
#

I wonder, do they have steps data, and if so, how do they use it, relative to bicycles? I’d sooner heft the bike up or down a set of steps than deal with a nasty street. The Armstrong Tunnel and Forbes vs. Duquesne U steps comes to mind.


jimjoe
Participant
#

@mick

Not to threadjack, but on a recent Pittsburgh to Cumberland ride on the GAP, a friend of mine and I were wishing we had the know-how to manufacture a bike and trailer that could be broken down and rebuilt into a raft that we could take back on the river. I know it’s not practical for the whole length of the trip, but it would make for a fun 40 or 50 mile round trip day with fishing and camping.


Marko82
Participant
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For those so inclined, Google is offering a chance at $2500 for a bike for tweeting about the new feature at this link.


Ohiojeff
Participant
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@stu The Armstrong Tunnel and Forbes vs. Duquesne U steps comes to mind.

Wow, talk about your Scylla and Charybdis one wonders if it wouldn’t be better to hang a left on 2nd, head up Ross and then right on Forbes if that’s way you want to go.


Ohiojeff
Participant
#

And in the case of the Diulis steps, yes, Joncaire is cobbles, but the sidwalks see a lot of bikes. I once carried my bike up the stairs that run from the bottom of Joncaire up behind the Frick Fine Arts building due to the concentration of pedestrians on the sidewalk. I concluded I’d have been better off walking the bike up the sidewalk or just stalling until it was clearer. I’ll ride up the Pave’ gladly, but not at 4:30 p.m. Still, Stu’s point is a good one in Pittsburgh where some streets do have a section that is all steps.


Mick
Participant
#

When I routed a trip earlier, Google took me down Diulis Way – and those are steps.

Mick


quizbot
Participant
#

it would be cool if they would show a route altitude profile graphic… that way you could pick your poison if you want a little suffering!

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