Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Green Bike Lanes Arriving in Baltimore

There's a welcome new change in downtown Baltimore: Green bike lanes. Not only are these bike lanes "green" from an environmental and sustainability standpoint, but also green in the literal sense. As reported in B'more Bikes, The Baltimore City Department of Transportation (BDOT) has begun painting bike lanes on President Street as part of the final element in the Southeast Bicycle Network. 

New green bike lane looking South on President Street

Painting the bike lanes green helps increase the visibility of the bike lanes and are intended to increase motorists' awareness of the lanes and cyclists that use them.

Looking north on President Street
By creating a bike lane network that is more visible to drivers and cyclists, Baltimore is continuing to create a more bike-friendly city. The solid color bike lane markings are a relatively low-cost but significant step in encouraging more bicycle usage. 

Colored bicycled lanes, whether green, blue, or red have been increasingly popular in other places throughout the U.S. and in Europe (see examples below).

We hope that BDOT will continue converting existing bike lanes to green bike lanes and include the solid green paint scheme on new bike lanes that are subsequently installed. This will help reinforce the idea of visually connecting walkable places with bicycle and transit infrastructure. This ties in perfectly with the 20-Minute Neighborhood concept.

Just imagine being able to bicycle from neighborhood to neighborhood (or to transit stops) throughout Baltimore in 5 - 20 minutes along a network of green bike lanes and bike lanes that are physically separated from traffic, depending on the type of road.

With bold, but attainable steps like BDOT is taking, that vision is within reach. Kudos to BDOT pedestrian and bicycle planner Nate Evans and BDOT for their willingness to move Baltimore towards a sustainable transportation future!

New York City


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