Call them what you will—protected bike lanes, cycle tracks, green lanes—they are making a big impact in cities that have embraced them. In fact, Pennsylvania Avenue right here in D.C. is giving it a try.
Protected bike lanes are essentially just regular bike lanes, but they have a protective “buffer” between bikes and traffic, such as parking spaces, medians, or concrete planters. In cities that have embraced the protected lanes, there has been considerable progress made in making biking a viable transportation alternative. New York City’s DOT has reported that crashes and injuries have decreased by 63 percent, and motorists have not faced increased travel times or congestion.
The quest to install these lanes has not been embraced by everyone. Several property owners, including New York’s U.S. Senator Chuck Schumer’s wife, Iris Weinshall, fought these lanes to the point of bringing a lawsuit to have them removed. But the advocacy group Transportation Alternatives prevailed, and the lanes stayed put.
Washington D.C. was among the six cities chosen to debut the lanes, and will eventually be joined by up to fifty cities. These lanes were strategically placed on busy streets throughout the six cities, and streets that would normally scare bikers off with heavy traffic have since become inviting havens for bikers to join the daily grind of commuting. The District has reported a 200 percent increase in bike traffic along Pennsylvania Avenue since the lane’s installation.
The D.C. bicycle accident lawyers at Lewis & Tompkins want to know—have you used this bike lane? What do you think of its impact on the cycling community?
If you have been injured in a biking accident in the District area, call us today at 202-296-0666 for a free consultation—we can help!