Protected Bike Lanes
Protected bike lanes use physical dividers to separate people biking from people driving and walking. These exclusive bike lanes combine the user experience of a trail with the on-street design of a traditional bike lane. A variety of dividers can be used to separate people biking from people driving, including concrete curbs, planters, posts, or even parked cars.
An increasing number of residents are calling for more protected bike lanes. In a survey conducted by the Path to Platinum initiative in fall 2016, 88% of the 933 respondents overwhelmingly desired biking improvements with more separation from motor vehicles.
Separated bike lanes are typically best suited for streets with higher motor vehicle traffic, higher speeds, and more on-street parking and/or motor vehicle lanes than may be needed.
Benefits of Protected Bike Lanes:
- Biking increases: Cities that have added protected bike lanes have experienced an average increase of 75% in biking on those routes in the first year alone.
- Biking becomes more comfortable: Studies show that protected bike lanes appeal to seven times more people than conventional bike lanes. Plus, they have been shown to reduce riding on sidewalks by 56%.
- The street is safer for everyone: Because they shorten crossing distances, control turning conflicts and reduce traffic weaving, protected bike lanes in New York City resulted in a 56% reduction in injuries to all street users, including a 57% reduction in injuries to people on bikes and a 29% reduction in injuries to people walking. Protected bike lanes are also known to have no effect travel times for auto traffic. In Chicago, rush hour travel times in both directions of protected bike lanes actually improved.
- The economy grows: In Salt Lake City, replacing parking with protected bike lanes increased retail sales by 8.8% over the first six months.
Watch the video below to learn more about the rise of protected bike lanes.