Experimental music, photography, and adventures

My new morning commute, in photos

Monday, August 15th, 2011

I’ve posted some descriptions and images from my new morning commute, but I thought it’d be fun to go through it step-by-step, pictorially. This is just one of my possible routes, the one I discovered recently and have been taking for a few weeks. Of course, this will change again once classes start back up.

My day starts with a climb. Not incredibly long or steep, but it can be a jarring way to get moving in the morning, immediately going into a climb.

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Then I turn a corner and I get a great downhill.

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Well, it’s great unless I get caught at a red light halfway down the hill, which almost always seems to happen …

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Then I turn onto the Bloomington Rail-Trail, which has a reasonably smooth crushed limestone surface. The trail is nicely shaded and cool, and follows Jackson Creek part of the way.

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Then I cross a busy road. I don’t normally ride over this pedestrian bridge, but I went less than half a block out of the way to get this photo.

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It’s sort of a gross creek, but I still like it.

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Now I turn onto another rail-trail, but this one is paved. This is part of the B-line trail. It’s not officially open yet, but they aren’t trying to prevent people from using it, either.

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This trail is usually wonderfully quiet, although I wonder if that will continue, once it’s officially opened. By the way, I found another trail that parallels this one, that’s unpaved. It’s fun, but there is a big tree down that makes it difficult to use the side trail the whole way.

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The B-line trail feels remote at first, then hits an industrial area.

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The Grimes Street Bridge is still under construction. This thing seems ridiculous to me. Grimes just isn’t that busy, and the trail has road crossings at busier roads. This bridge is huge and is costing somewhere over $2 million, if I remember correctly.

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I should point out that the concept art for this bridge is rather hilarious.

What are they going to do, replace Grimes Street with a canal?

This machine shop always catches my eye. It’s actually quite a production with several buildings just like this, all lined up. What’s he building in there?

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I’ve also noticed there are some other industrial buildings that appear to be vacant. I dream of buying one and converting it into a high-tech company, or an art gallery. Hmmm …

There’s definitely some blight along the way …

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But, once you get closer to downtown, things improve. This bridge over Third Street is useful, and really cool, if extravagant. Notice the Monroe County Courthouse is visible on the right side of the image.

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The downtown section of the B-Line trail has quite a bit of public art — more than I can go into here.

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Just a few more blocks from here, and I”m at work.

It’s a great new route option — I am very glad I discovered it. The B-Line trail is really coming along. It’s incredible how long it has taken to get here, and I think it could have been done a lot more efficiently, but  I’m so glad to see it’s finally becoming useful.

13 Responses to “My new morning commute, in photos”

  1. Fonk Says:

    Looks like a nice ride – great way to start the day!

  2. Mark Says:

    I like the Tom Waits reference.

  3. Bill Lambert Says:

    That trail looks really wide. Many of the trails around these parts are too narrow, in my opinion, to handle even moderate numbers of pedestrians and bicyclists.

    I have a dream of reusing old industrial buildings also.

  4. Steve A Says:

    Re that bollard in the bottom photo. They’re not seriously worried about SUVs driving down that, are they?

  5. Pondero Says:

    Great photo documentation. I think it would be quite interesting to see the same photos in fall, and then winter.

  6. David Crowell Says:

    Neat! You’re making me want to move to Bloomington.

  7. Apertome Says:

    Mark: I had to throw the Waits reference in there — glad someone picked up on it.

    Steve: Who knows. With both a large student population, and a large redneck population in the area, you can never be too careful.

    I’m really curious how this stuff will be in the winter. I already know the unpaved trail doesn’t get treated in any way. But the paved part, I’m not sure. I’m guessing they won’t touch it.

  8. Asher Says:

    This makes me want to move to Bloomington! 😀 It blows my mind that B’ton can manage to design functional bike trails that one can actually use to commute, while Louisville’s powers-that-be continue to struggle with the concept that bikes are viable transportation alternatives :::sigh::: I’m sure that at least part of this is simply Grass-Is-Greener syndrome, and actually I mostly love riding in Louisville (just not my immediate neighborhood), but still 🙂

    Are you guys back in school the 28th? Part of me is really having a hard time with the notion that summer is almost over!

  9. Apertome Says:

    Asher, we start the 29th (the 28th is a Sunday). I’m not ready to go back, either.

    Keep in mind that the B-Line Trail has been in development for quite a few years, and it’s only now becoming useful. It started out as a 1/4-mile vanity project that somehow cost millions of dollars and took years to build. I’ve been extremely frustrated all along, but it is finally starting to pay off.

    The other problem is, while one end of this trail is downtown, the other access points are kind of stupid. I have to take a busy road to get to the trail, and many parts of town don’t have any trails at all.

  10. Jon Grinder Says:

    We have hundreds of miles of trails, in Denver, and not a single one of them is useful for getting from my house to work. At least I have mostly quiet neighborhood streets on my commute.

  11. Tim Says:

    Jealous now. Makes my suburban/urban commute sort of mundane.

  12. Chandra Says:

    Nice route to get to work. I had a great route in St. Louis, right through Forest Park. I am kinda reminded of that.
    We all deserve great routes like that 🙂

    Peace 🙂

  13. Dan Says:

    I have a bit of a climb at the beginning of my commute as well. Not horrible, but it gets my heart going first thing in the AM.

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