Sharrow Study: Sharrows No Substitute for Bike Lanes

When you're the LADOT and you don't really want to implement approved Bike Plan facilities, do sharrows on streets wide enough for bike lanes instead. Grrrr.

Thanks to reader-commenter Marcotico for referring me to bicycle expert Mia Birk’s blog post which lead me to this San Francisco study on sharrows. Thanks to Birk for pointing out that: (p17)

This study … does not recommend that shared lane markings [ie: sharrows] be used as a substitute for bicycle lanes where they are a feasible option.

Even the folks who like sharrows aren’t doing them where bike lanes are easily feasible. Unfortunately, this is exactly what LADOT says that they’ll do “by year’s end” on nearly a dozen street segments in its we’re-doing-sharrows-instead-of-the-bike-plan list.

In the comments at her blog, Mia Birk specifically mentions that 44-foot roadway as a place for bike lanes, not sharrows. LADOT includes quite a few 44-foot-wide roadways on its list: McConnell Avenue, Fountain Avenue, 51st Street and possibly more. LADOT calls these “too narrow for bicycle lanes” and “streets that cannot easily accommodate bike lanes” but it’s just not true. 

Please Mayor Villaraigosa, please LADOT – do the right thing. Do feasible bike lanes, not just sharrows!!

Marcotico also points out the asymmetrical sharrow-downhill and bike-lane-uphill is done in Seattle. I think that this makes sense for State Street in Boyle Heights… and probably plenty of other streets with similar profiles and dimensions in Los Angeles.

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One thought on “Sharrow Study: Sharrows No Substitute for Bike Lanes

  1. Pingback: New Sharrows Underway on Jersey City’s Old Bergen Road | B.I.K.A.S.

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