Streetsblog's Tanya Snyder gives the design guide high marks - evaluating it as "far ahead" of other manuals on bicycle facilities.
"NACTO's guide is far ahead of the industry standard, old-guard manuals: the Federal Highway Administration's Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices and the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials' design guidelines. NACTO's Urban Bikeway Design Guide was the first to provide engineering guidance for protected bike lanes."
NACTO's first edition was released March 9, 2011, "[A] comprehensive overview of the latest developments in bicycle infrastructure that is intended to advance state and national policy", wrote Streetsblog's Angie Schmitt at that time.
"Meanwhile, AASHTO just published its first update in 13 years and is still not ready to embrace protected bike lanes, though (b)oulevards do get a mention, writes Snyder. She did offer some positive words, though, upon its release on June 19.
"Transportation engineers know that the entire system works more efficiently when we build streets, bridges, and highways that can accommodate bicyclists and pedestrians in the safest way possible," AASHTO Director John Horsley said in a statement.
"About NACTO" provides the history of the organization:
"NACTO was founded in 1996 by then Commissioner Elliot Sander of New York City's Department of Transportation after concluding that, unlike the nation's States which often interact with each other and through the American Association of State and Highway Transportation Officials (AASHTO), the large central cities had virtually no meaningful political or technical relationships with each other."
NAACTO's president is none other than the Transportation Commissioner of New York City, Janette Sadik-Khan.
According to the NAACTO press release, "The Urban Bikeway Design Guide is an interactive document that can be found online at http://www.c4cguide.org and www.citiesforcycling.org. The print edition of the NACTO Guide may be ordered for $46."
AASHTO's guide can be downloaded for $144 or $120 for members.
Thanks to John Holtzclaw