Preliminary testing is being conducted by Gorski Consulting to track the lateral position of motor vehicles and cyclists within the northbound lane where a new cycling lane is proposed on Colborne Street in London, Ontario. The procedures involve the production of a matrix of painted orange dots at 5-metre intervals for a distance of 50 metres. At each 5-metre location orange dots are painted at 20-centimetre intervals commencing from the east concrete gutter and progressing up to 2 metres into the lane. Video cameras placed near each 5-metre interval capture the position of the right front tire of a motor vehicle with respect to the orange dots. For cyclists the video captures the position of the front tire.
Because motor vehicles travel at higher speeds their lateral position is not likely to change greatly over the short distance of 50 metres. Thus it is likely that the tires of motor vehicles will only be documented at the zero, 25 and 50-metre intervals. Unlike motor vehicles cyclists travel at a slow speed and thus are more likely to change their lateral position in the 50-metre distance. Also cyclists depend on differing steer angles and body positions in order to keep along a certain path and this is another reason why their paths are likely to change. Thus for cyclists their paths will likely be documented at all ten 5-metre intervals.
Given the extensive time commitment it is unlikely that the paths of all motor vehicles will be documented although that decision might change if volunteers are found to conduct these detailed observations. However It is expected that larger vehicles such as trucks and buses will be fully documented as there is likely to be few of these observations.
As an example of the type of data that is likely to be generated, the above photo shows a view, looking south in the northbound lane of Colborne Street in London, Ontario, where the testing is being done. A 5-metre interval is shown as noted by the row of orange dots at the top and bottom of the photo. As the orange paint was sprayed to produce the dots motor vehicles passed over the wet paint and then transferred the imprints onto the pavement at each revolution of the tire. Those transfers are rather faint so they have been highlighted in the photo by black circles. Additionally a white line has been produced to show the position of the future, white line of paint that is expected to be painted by the City of London sometime in the future. Through this methodology we can see where the right side tires of motor vehicles have passed with respect to the width of the future cycling lane. This visual method of showing the motor vehicle paths may not be as detailed as the numerical methods that will be employed but it is a quick demonstration of a small number of observations and what they reveal. We will be tracking the lateral positions of cyclists in the more-detailed, numerical fashion and this data will be presented in a future article when analysis is completed.