Curb Extensions Don't Work

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By Scott Wenz, President of Cars are Basic

All three cities of south Santa Barbara County [Goleta, Santa Barbara, Carpinteria] are building Bulbout Hell/curb extensions for pedestrian safety.

This is a lie. All three have admitted to failure of these devices when directly questioned by Cars Are Basic (CAB). Additionally, the County Association of Governments and the County of Santa Barbara have stated they cannot prove bulbouts/curb extensions make pedestrians safer.

The City of Santa Barbara sent out the following "public outreach notice" quote regarding bulbouts: "The safety enhancement at the two school crossings......will improve pedestrian safety...." end quote.  Since south county has a minimum of a decade of statistics and those statistics prove failure why is this lie being published?  Propaganda published by the government when they know the truth.  So why the lie?

Powerful anti-car street narrowing special interests are intent on intentionally causing congestion to "prove" their prejudice view of transportation.  

Curb Extensions (Bulbout Hell) have failed the test of time.  Bublout Hell cost a minimum of $90,000 per intersection, make wide turns difficult for vehicles, increase the speed of turns (ref: paper provided by City of SB... D. van Hengle), and interfere with First Responders.  SB City is about to shut down 4 efficient stop light controlled intersections for stop signs because of repair costs, that are less than one Bulbuout Hell Intersection.

Are you going to allow Government to lie to you?  Isn't it time to call City Administrators and Elected Officials to account?  Do you need more tax waste?


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46 Comments

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a-1575749370 Jul 25, 2019 10:56 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

"Cars Are Basic" sounds like a joke. One third of Americans cannot drive. I guess they don't count. This "organization" is just two grumpy old guys the last I checked.

sbdude Jul 24, 2019 03:21 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

As a cyclist I hate bulb-outs. They frequently force me either to go out into traffic lanes or go up on to the corner sidewalk, interacting with pedestrians who might be there. Either one reduces safety.

a-1575749370 Jul 25, 2019 10:57 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

I don't believe you are a cyclist. Bulb outs don't stick out as far as a parked car so how could it force you to change your riding path? And if you really are a cyclist you are probably also a pedestrian. It is obvious if you ever tried to cross a busy intersection that bulb outs are safer when you are crossing the street.

EastBeach Jul 25, 2019 10:36 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

As a cyclist myself, I don't see why a bulb-out would present a problem to a responsible cyclist. They typically stick out as much as a parked car would. And when a cyclist has to move to the right for faster traffic to pass, it's the cyclist's responsibility to do so safely. You'd have the same situation whether there were parked cars or a bulb-out next to you. Methinks SBDUDE complaineth too much.

PitMix Jul 25, 2019 08:39 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Or you could do what the cyclist do on San Andres, just take over the whole lane and cycle leisurely along while the cars pile up behind you. Seems empowering for the cyclists.

a-1575749370 Jul 24, 2019 12:40 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

While we are on the subject of cars versus pedestrians and other safety issues, I’d really like to see a 25 mph speed limit citywide. Racing down Las Positas only saves a minute or two, even less on most other streets. Slow down and enjoy the drive and life in SB.

PitMix Jul 25, 2019 08:37 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

CA has this weird law that the speed limit cannot be much lower than the prevailing speed on the street as measured in a speed survey. This was intended to prevent speed traps where a town would post a really low speed limit on an open road and then make a lot of revenue by issuing tickets. So it would be very difficult for the City to reduce the speed limit on Modoc or Las Positas down to 25. To do this you would have to get the state to change this law.

a-1575749370 Jul 24, 2019 01:58 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

JUL 24, 2019 12:40 PM Yes. I often think how much nicer life would be with a 25mph speed limit citywide. Drivers would relax more, residents on busy streets would be much happier. The tailgating, pushy, angry driving would stop. Tourists would be happier, too, I think. That 50mph sign on Modoc Rd. should be the first thing to go.

Ehdat Jul 24, 2019 09:12 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

From the Scott is Basic organization. Bulbs out have been in SB for a decade now that Scott has been complaining. No collisions, no crashes, no dangers, people drive around them easy. All proven exactly what the so called experts claimed. Talking about beating a dead horse. Sure but Delivery trucks hit them, delivery trucks also hit poles, signal lights, regular curbs. Bike lanes don't work? Kind of krock of crap that comment is. Go ride a bike and tell me bike lane versus no bike lane, and report back. I have never heard from any first responders that cant drive this town? Scott please upload a video of you driving around so that we can see your driving skills. I think there is a drive school on the west side that can help you improve your steering wheel. On that note: I really love the difference of opinion that keeps checks and balances on our local government. Keep it up Scott.

a-1575749370 Jul 24, 2019 09:03 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

In Europe I notice that they use small center islands for pedestrian crossings but I don't recall ever seeing bulb-outs. Bulb-outs also make turning movements at the intersection much more difficult for large vehicles like busses or trucks.

Phantom Blot Jul 24, 2019 08:32 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

People perched on the edge of these look nervous, as in, “Please don’t hit me out here on the Victim Perch”

SantaBarbaraObserver Jul 24, 2019 07:58 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

If you drive through these often, or watch them, you'll see countless cars hit them, over correct and cause driver panic on the road. They are simply out of character of every curb and turn one encounters driving the streets of California. They do not match the typical turn radius nor are they visible, so without explicit knowledge of their size and their scope, people do not know they are even there let alone that they need to take the turn wider to avoid damaging their car. I have seen hundreds of cars hit these bulb outs. Just go look at them! They're scratched, marred and tarnished from tires, metal and scars. I have seen countless numbers of these drivers panic and either slam on their brakes or turn their cars into traffic after the sudden surprise of hitting something. So while they may have some statistical safety factor, they are much more of a detriment than a positive. A sign post would be more effective, or a orange cone. To me these types of things are what people who are tasked to find a problem come up with... "To a man with a hammer, everything is a nail"...

Shasta Guy Jul 24, 2019 06:57 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Cars still drive too fast and too many pedestrians hide behind telephone poles or just walk into the intersection without breaking their stride. Bulb outs are irritating, but they are no substitute for basic common sense and courtesy

aragorn Jul 24, 2019 06:48 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Horses. Bring back riding horses. And carrying single action revolvers. "Let's ride boys!!!!" (Kicking dust.)

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 08:01 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Bulb outs work; they make it easier to see pedestrians and it makes roads safer. YAY! BULB OUTS!

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 07:59 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

This from the Cars Are Basic guy who thinks women shouldn’t drive either.

a-1575749370 Jul 25, 2019 08:12 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

I witnessed him speak at a City Council meeting and state it. You can see it for yourself on videos during public speaking segment if City Council Hearings.

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 06:00 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

I like bulbous more than I like Cars Are Basic(ally stoopid).

jqb Jul 23, 2019 05:43 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

"By Scott Wenz, President of Cars are Basic" LOL. I stopped reading right there ... I give more credence to The Flat Earth Society or David Duke.

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 04:18 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Anything that slows down drivers and gets their attention, in order to force them to be intent on their driving, gets my vote. I've posted this before and I will post it again now: If it takes a person (or two) with a baseball bat at each intersection to enforce speed limits and make drivers stop trying to mow down pedestrians, I say get on with it.

pkww Jul 23, 2019 03:59 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

"Powerful anti-car street narrowing special interests" ... Sounds like you think motorists are a marginalized group. How wide is your car, Sir?

PitMix Jul 23, 2019 03:36 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

I hadn't heard much about the CAB people after they swore that the Milpas roundabout would cause the end of the civilized world as we know it. And then it seemed to work just fine.

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 02:53 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

We we go again. It seems that every year someone has to go on a tear about bulbouts. Yes, they are new (not so much any more) and require a new skill set but no more than that SUV/RV/wagon parked 12 inches from the curb does. Driving requires constant problem solving: what is that car doing, can I squeeze by before they shoot out of that driveway, etc. Distance over time calculations all day long. By the time you get home to your street these extended curbs are just another obstacle, another inconvenience to be navigated and dealt with. Urgh! Why can't things just stay the way I'm accustomed to? I'm 63 and find adapting to new things, new measures and new obstacles doesn't come as easy as it once did. So dammit, don't change anything until I'm dead and gone.

a-1575749370 Jul 24, 2019 11:38 AM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Wow can you believe that they manage the skills to drive on the wrong side of the road in some countries. Look what it got the Britains: Brexit and Boris. We start putting in bulbouts and get Murillo & Trump. On second thought I am no longer in favor of bulbouts.

Thomas John Jul 23, 2019 06:44 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

yes, anything that is difficult for old folks should not happen!

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 02:38 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

I personally don't care for bulbouts, but you are wrong that they are not safer. There's a lot of research out there, use google.com/scholar to find legitimate, peer-reviewed studies and data instead of a simple Google search. By the way, the second half of your post is very confusing and I can't make sense of some of your sentences.

Thomas John Jul 23, 2019 06:45 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

yeah what ever, we can all find something on google that supports our claim.

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 04:21 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

I believe 2:53PM meant the latter 1/2 of his/her "rant" as sarcasm. Good one.

PitMix Jul 23, 2019 03:34 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Oregon study from 2005 found they were safer but with a limited number of locations probably was not definitive. I have to say that the median pedestrian island for the left turn from Portesuello onto Modoc really slows things down because if you turn too fast you will definitely run over the island. The sign they had on the island is long gone.

All Sides Jul 23, 2019 02:34 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

I personally don't need a curb sticking out into the road to do the speed limit. I don't like them.

patrick Jul 23, 2019 02:30 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

As a pedestrian, I like them. As a car driver and bike rider, I don’t mind them. Therefore, I’m in favor of them.

Mas Gaviota Jul 23, 2019 02:29 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Mr. Wenz was against the Las Positas and the Hot Springs road roundabouts. Apparenty this fellow loves his car so much that he enjoyed that extra time stuck at two of the most (formally) congested intersections in our area.

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 02:15 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Mr Trump.....please read FHWA policy. They like traffic calming and bulbouts! https://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/speedmgt/ePrimer_modules/module3pt2.cfm https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/publications/publicroads/10julaug/03.cfm https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/publications/research/safety/pedbike/0104.pdf

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 04:11 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

ALL SIDES. I'm downvoting you right now because you forgot to use the apostrophe in "poster's." There. I feel pretty good about that.

All Sides Jul 23, 2019 02:32 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

It could be the tone of the rebuttal. I read that the reason for down vote is "Is this comment useful?" A down vote could be attributed to a posters mis-comprehension (real word?) of the article or comment. I have had many down votes. It's just another person's opinion. All opinions should be welcome, even if not agreed with. All info is good info, use it as you want.

a-1575749370 Jul 23, 2019 01:25 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

This op is such a con opinion. I guarantee he need re-but in to this piece. One is to wonder if this narrow-minded opinion ever walks a street/crosswalk. Cars are basic assumes they live in a vehicle centric world. Sorry things change from the good ole days! Curb extensions/bulb outs shorten the distance hence the time a person is walking across the street. Do we need to study this raw logic? Shorter distance = shorter time. Does one really need to study this fact? Curb extensions/bulb outs give the pedestrian a view around a parked car in a safer manor than wandering into a roadway. The driver sees the curb exists if they are paying attention. The pedestrian can see oncoming traffic by seeing a car before going into the vehicle travel way. Curb extensions/bulb-outs do not narrow the roadway it narrows a intersection while still accommodating vehicle movement. This is an outright lie. Wasn’t this the same fool on record against the roundabout at Las Positas? That works wonderfully! Transportation is more than just cars. Do not believe all the hype coming from this op-ed. The mentality of CABS is the drill – baby – drill=cars rule!. Thank you Dru and Rob for all you do. I for one appreciate your efforts and see the logic. Such a small price to pay for giving the power back to the people walking the street!

mrtrump Jul 23, 2019 12:32 PM
Curb Extensions Don't Work

Scott- And bike lanes don't work either. You have to take your arguments to the feds, and get federal transportation funding shut off to the City of Santa Barbara and the County. They commit fraud every day by submitting fraudulent funding proposals to the U.S Department of Transportation.

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