Bicycle Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection System
Bike lane with on-street parking. http://www.pedbikeimages.org/ - Dan Burden
Bike lanes indicate a preferential or exclusive space for bicycle travel along a street. Bike lanes are typically 4 to 6 ft wide and are designated by striping and symbols placed within the lane. Signage may also be used. Colored pavement or a contrasting paving material has also been used in certain situations to distinguish bike lanes from the motor vehicle lanes. Use of green colored bike lanes has interim approval from FHWA. Bike lanes are for one-way travel and are normally provided on both sides on two-way streets. Bike lanes may be placed against the curb where there is no parking and are usually designated to the left of parking or right turn lanes. Sometimes bike lanes are marked on the left side of a one-way street such as on streets where there are a high number of transit stops or vehicles on the right side, significantly more driveways, or where the majority of destinations are on the left side of the street.
Bike lanes have been found to provide more consistent separation between bicyclists and passing motorists than shared travel lanes. The presence of the bike lane stripe has also been shown from research to result in fewer erratic motor vehicle driver maneuvers, more predictable bicyclist riding behavior, and enhanced comfort levels for both motorists and bicyclists. Wider bike lanes (6 to 7 ft) and/or buffers provide additional operating space and lateral separation from moving and parked vehicles, thus increasing bicyclists sense of comfort and perceived safety (i.e., level of service) and reducing the risk of dooring from parked vehicles. Using buffers between the bike and motor vehicle lanes can also be used to visually narrow a wide street and create a more attractive and comfortable bicycling environment.
Bike lanes are used to create on-street, separated travel facilities for bicyclists. They can provide safety benefits to road users though separate operational space for safe motorist overtaking of bicyclists, particularly in narrow, congested areas. Bike lane presence also visually narrows the roadway or motor vehicle travel lanes to encourage lower motor vehicle speeds.
The costs for bikeways shown below are assumed to include all costs including bikeway preparation, if applicable. However, costs were also identified for specific actions related to preparing a site for a separated bikeway, including excavation, grading, curb/gutter removal, and clearing and grubbing (removing vegetation and roots). Though cost information was limited, the following individual costs were obtained (all costs are approximate): excavation ($55 per foot); grading ($2,000 per acre); curb/gutter removal ($5 per linear foot); and clearing and grubbing ($2,000 to $15,500 per acre, depending on the width of the road and whether it is done on one or both sides of the road).
Authors and Acknowledgements