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Shaw-Clarke, Neighborhood of the Year


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#1 avvy

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Posted 30 January 2012 - 10:16 PM

http://fortworthtexa...t.aspx?id=93516

Just got this link in the City News email.

I'm proud of my 'hood! Looks like we'll be getting some of those cool signs that other NA's have.

(Now if we can just get that urban village going...)

#2 John T Roberts

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Posted 31 January 2012 - 10:37 AM

Congratulations!

#3 Doohickie

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 10:45 AM

Is the train crossing mentioned in the article the one on Shaw between 5th and 6th avenues? I use that from time to time when riding my bicycle, particularly when a train is blocking my normal crossing point on Biddison, when going from my neighborhood south of I-20 to the Near Southside, a ride I do frequently.

I am wary of taking that route, especially in the evening. The last time I went through that tunnel (which has a 90 degree bend so you can't see if there's anyone in there until you get there), there was fresh graffiti. I've seen loose dogs out, particularly on 5th Ave., a block or two south of Clarke Elementary, as well as 6th Avenue north of the tunnel. They haven't gotten me yet, thank goodness. Hopefully the neighborhood association is helping in that regard as well. Knowing they are active, I may send them a note to inquire about that, and also to applaud their efforts to date.

My usual route is to take Ryan Avenue all the way from Roseomnt Park to the Ryan Place Neighborhood, where I jog over to Willing/Fairmount or 6th. It seems to me to be much safer, even late at night. Maybe Shaw is fine, too, but it's my lack of familiarity that makes me wary.

The bigger issue, though, is that a neighborhood association has been reborn and their neighborhood will hopefully continue to improve. :D
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#4 avvy

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 11:43 AM

I understand the wariness of taking the tunnel. I've ridden through it too, but at the time I thought I was going through a storm drain. It was gross. At one of our meetings a few months ago there was discussion of getting out there regularly to clean it. I missed the last NA meeting so I don't know if there has been improvement there.
Please feel free to communicate anything to our NA. The contact info for the officers is on the Fort Worth website.

#5 John T Roberts

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 12:29 PM

Doohickie, there is always a train going across the crossing at Biddison and Ryan. As Avvy indicated, you do have the location correct and there is a 90 degree bend to the access on the east side to connect to Shaw Street, and that corner is blind. Also, you are correct in your observations that there are a lot of dogs running loose in the neighborhood. Several have chased me when riding through the area. Your usual route through the area south of Ryan Place is probably the best route, with the exception of the railroad crossing. Generally speaking, I would say that the entire neighborhood has about the same level of safety. Ryan and 6th are the two major north/south streets. Ultimately, in the Bike Fort Worth Plan, the existing bike route along Ryan will be extended south to Biddison. I believe Biddison is scheduled for a route in itself and then the north/south route through the neigbhorhood will head down 6th Avenue because of the direct connection to Seminary Drive and to Hubbard Heights, then next neighborhood south of Rosemont.

If you are concerned about having to wait on a train, there is another option. When you are in Ryan Place you could head east on Jessamine, Robert, or Cantey Streets to S. Adams. One block south of Cantey, Lowden angles under the railroad tracks. Take the first right after the underpass, and that is College Avenue. Continue across Berry Street on College until you hit W. Shaw. You can either go left and jog on College to cross Biddison, or you can turn right to connect to Henderson Street to cross Biddison. From there you can take, Ripy or Butler to get back to Ryan Avenue and your original route.

#6 Doohickie

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Posted 01 February 2012 - 12:45 PM

I am aware of the Lowden crossing as well, but that's further east than my route usually goes. I've seen loose dogs near the school, but I can't say any of them actually gave chase. But when you see a pit bull loose and you're on a bike, you can't help but be wary.

This past Sunday night, a little further south on James (which I've recommended for sharrows in the the bike plan, by the way), a large lab mix came out of the neighborhood and crossed four lanes to come after me. He was closing, too, until I looked back at him and said, "NO!" in the loudest voice I could muster. He looked up but was still coming and I yelled "NO!" again and he broke off the chase. That's actually the most significant even I think I've had on the Southside.

Knowing that the association is trying to improve things, I may try the crossing more frequently. If you see me in the neighborhood, avvy, wave can call Hello. I'll be the dorky guy with a helmet, but wearing street clothes (at least most of the time).
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#7 avvy

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 08:55 PM

I'll be happy to Doohickie! Cruise down Woodland because that's my street.

John, that is good news about Biddison. I've always thought it would make a good bike route, but there has to be some type of marker so cars can be aware.

#8 John T Roberts

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Posted 03 February 2012 - 10:17 PM

Biddison is slated for bike lanes in the Bike Fort Worth Plan. I thought I would clarify.

#9 Doohickie

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Posted 07 February 2012 - 01:12 PM

Fort Worth really has a wealth of secondary and neighborhood feeder streets that, while not being ideal for large volume/fast motor traffic, is ideal for point-to-point routes for cycling. Ryan Avenue is a good example. Biddison is another. James is surprisingly rideable, and I've even used Hemphill.

Checking the map.... Oh, I've been down Woodland before. I'll make a note of trying it again. Which block are you on? When I go through neighborhoods I'll usually ring my bell if I see someone out, so if you get dinged at, wave and introduce yourself! (Yes, I answer to Doohickie; I've been called that several times now.)
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#10 John T Roberts

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Posted 08 February 2012 - 10:42 PM

Avvy, Biddison will be a "marked" route. It is also slated to have bicycle lanes. That actually makes sense because the street is very wide for only two lanes. It would be very easy to stripe off a bicycle lane in each direction.

#11 Doohickie

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 08:25 AM

I'll be happy to Doohickie! Cruise down Woodland because that's my street.


I did exactly that yesterday. I had a meeting at the Habitat for Humanity office at Bewick and Jones. I took my normal route to Ryan and Biddison, then took Willing up to Woodlands. I turned left on College and went around the OLV campus, then over to Hemphill and back to Bewick. On the return trip, I took Woodlands west from Hemphill. So I suppose I passed by your house. There are some truly beautiful homes on Woodlands.

This is right by Biddison and Ryan by the train crossing.

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A soccer game at the Rosemont Middle School field.

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Dusk settles in on the south end of the SW Baptist Seminary campus.

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#12 Hometown by Handlebar

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Posted 04 May 2012 - 11:33 AM

Great photos, Doohickie.
There is some fine masonry work--especially chimneys--on Woodland.

#13 avvy

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Posted 06 May 2012 - 11:18 PM

@ John - I will be looking forward to bike lines on Biddison. It is a good back route to the University/Berry intersection, via Benbrook. As an "amatuer" biker, I am wary of riding down Berry.

@ Doohickie - I bet I was in the backyard with the kids. Glad you rode down. I think Shaw-Clarke is really a hidden gem. Sure, there are some run-down houses, but really, what neighborhood doesn't have them? Anyway, I'll keep an ear out for your bell! (BTW, my powder blue cruiser is parked on my front porch).

#14 Doohickie

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Posted 08 May 2012 - 11:45 AM

As an "amatuer" biker, I am wary of riding down Berry.

Devitt and Bowie are good alternatives to Berry, one just south and the other just north. And if you want to get more confidence in terms of riding on the streets, check out CommuteOrlando. There are lots of educational articles, videos and animations that tell you how to "drive your bike." Check out the On The Road and Animations tabs. A good place to start is the article called You Lead the Dance.

You are in such a great area for cycling though. The Southside is pretty flat. The roads are arranged in a fairly continuous grid; all you need to worry about is where to jump across the major roads and the train tracks. Otherwise, just pedal through the neighborhood streets. If you have any suggestions to aid bikeability or walkability of your area, contact Julia McCleeary in the city planner's office. She's been pretty actively engaged in rolling out that kind of infrastructure. You can find her contact info on the Ft. Worth government website.
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#15 Doohickie

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Posted 17 May 2012 - 08:20 AM

I once again rode through Shaw-Clarke last evening on the way to the Ride of Silence. I plan on doing the Ride Your Bike to Work Day tomorrow and wanted to check the route to Travis Ave. Baptist Church. The more I ride through that area, the more comfortable it feels.
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#16 Doohickie

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 11:25 AM

The more I ride through that area, the more comfortable it feels.

Now that my wife is riding more, we've gone through there together. She likes the neighborhood and if Fairmount and Ryan Place price themselves out of our range before we buy, we may look in Shaw-Clarke.

On a slightly different note, I noticed another development related to the train track pedestrian underpass just west of the elementary school: a couple blocks further west, at Shaw & Ryan Ave., there is a new 4-way stop sign and pedestrian crossing, I guess to make it safer for the kiddos to get to school.

And while I'm at it, here's a pic I took last night in Rosemont park a little to the south. And yes, the red light off to the right a bit is a cop car with lights going (he had someone pulled over).

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