Bike Lane Installation, Falling Short of Expected 7.5 Miles

According to the Washington DC Department of Transportation, installing extra bike lanes as expected this year has become more challenging. This follows the continuous addition of bike lanes on the wider roads every year for the last ten years. This new challenge is characterized by the fact that some streets have limited width, hence making it hard to install new bike lanes without limiting the space for general traffic and parking.

According to the department of transport, there are about 69 miles of bike lanes in Washington DC. Nevertheless, there has been an additional 1.6 miles of shared lane markings this year, with green paint being added to the bike lanes already in existence. This is as noted by Mike Goodno, a bicycle program specialist working with the department of transport.

Officials from the DC transportation department have indicated that, there is a o.6 mile bike lane scheduled to be installed in the coming weeks to provide a much-needed connection between Pennsylvania Avenue and L Street. Considering that these two are very popular streets with regard to bike lanes in the city, it will come as good news to riders who will be afforded the liberty to ride on their own lane from Pennsylvania to Vermont Street. The installation is set to begin at 12th Street NW, from Pennsylvania to L Street.

The need for additional bike lanes has been advocated for by bike groups that have been calling for an expansion of the bike facilities, to bring about a larger bike network in the city. The groups have been calling for an expansion particularly outside the downtown core, to expand and allow ease of access to bike facilities across the whole city. However, officials have claimed that it is quite a challenge to have bike lanes in some particular areas such as Ward 8, as the width of the roads can only allow lanes for vehicles and parking.

The DC Department of Transportation has only been able to install 2.27 miles of bike lanes this year, which is by far less than the anticipated 7.5 miles. This also comes as a decrease in the record nine miles installed the previous year. However, according to the city’s transportation officials, there are a number of street miles under consideration with some in the design phase. If completed by the end of the year, would edge the total miles installed this year closer to the 7.5 miles target.

This year’s installations are however focused on filling gaps where cyclists were not comfortable when riding while also creating a larger network of bike lanes in the city to enhance connectivity.

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