Friday, October 10, 2014

The New Bike Path On Broadway...Or 300 East

I work on the third floor of an office building on 300 East in Salt Lake City. In Salt Lake City, most streets are not named, but numbered. It's a grid system, boring, but a more effective locating system would be hard to find. 

From our vantage point on the third floor we can see all the "improvements" the city is making on the street. A few months ago they repaved the entire street. It looked beautiful! Then they painted it and we noticed something different.

The parallel parking spaces were spaced about 10 feet from the sidewalk. After a while, it became obvious what they were doing--putting in a dedicated bicycle lane complete with a cement barrier to separate the bike lane from the car lane.

It reminded me of Denmark where they not only have dedicated bike lanes, but also bike traffic signals. One of the first things you learn when driving a car in Denmark is you MUST look to your right whenever making a right-hand turn, because if you're in a busy city, you WILL be crossing a bike path and you never know if a bike is coming through the intersection. Imagine making a right-hand turn from a center lane. There could be a car in the far right lane that's going through the intersection.

The new configuration on 300 East--or Broadway, as it's sometimes known--requires a driver making right-hand turns to cross in front of the bike path. In Denmark checking that lane became second nature. I sure hope the drivers in Salt Lake City learn how important this is.

No comments:

Post a Comment