Friday, September 12, 2014

The Rise of Protected Bike Lanes in the U.S.

From Co.Exist -- Visit cities like Amsterdam or Copenhagen and you soon notice something different about the facilities for cyclists. Not only are there are plenty of bike lanes, but the lanes are fully separated from the rest of the road--usually with plant pots or plastic bollards. Far from being an afterthought, cyclists get their own road infrastructure.

Bike advocates argue that separation is key to driving up cyclist participation. And so it appears from a new study of early separated lane projects in the U.S. Across six cities, the study finds a rise of ridership between 21% and 171% after the lanes were installed.

The report from Portland State University looks at eight "Green Lane" projects sponsored by PeopleForBikes, an advocacy group in Colorado. Researchers tracked the impact of the new lanes in Austin, Chicago, Portland (Oregon), San Francisco, and Washington, D.C., by analyzing camera footage, interviewing cyclists, and sending out surveys to local residents. [Full article ...]

Above: A bicyclist on Delaware Avenue in Newark is fed up with drivers coming too close. Fortunately, help may be on the way, as Delaware Avenue may soon include the State's first protected bike lane. The proposal was part of this year's Newark Bicycle Plan and approved unanimously by council on Feb. 24 . It presents the overall mission and vision for where efforts will be focused over the next several years.

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