City of Spokane www.spokanecity.org

As part of its new Master Bike Plan, the City of Spokane is creating “sharrows,” or shared bike and car lanes, on Southeast Boulevard and 37th Avenue.

Below, you can read the City of Spokane’s explanation of the project and instructions for using sharrows.

CITY TO ADD SHARED LANE MARKINGS OR “SHARROWS” ON SOUTHEAST BOULEVARD, 37th AVENUE
Motorists and Cyclists to share the road

With the passage of the City of Spokane’s new Master Bike Plan, along with tremendous new interest in cycling in our community, the City is adding “sharrows” on Southeast Blvd. and 37th Ave. as part of this summer’s construction work to allow bikes and cars to get along better.

Sharrows are pavement markings installed within travel lanes designed to alert motorists that they are sharing the street with bicyclists and to help bicyclists position themselves in lanes to allow motorists to safely pass them.

These markings have been used successfully in other cities across the country, including Seattle, Bellevue and Portland. In Spokane, the new markings will be unveiled when Southeast Blvd. and 37th Ave. reopen to traffic. Southeast Blvd. opens later this month, with 37th Ave. to follow mid-October, and other streets in the future.

On the Southeast Blvd., which is being rehabilitated from 29th Ave. to Perry St., the sharrows will be placed between 27th and 29th avenues connecting the existing dedicated bike lanes on the street.  On 37th Ave., which is being rehabilitated from Perry to Regal streets, the installation of the sharrows, placed the length of the project, will improve bicycle safety and usage along this corridor.

“Sharrows are another tool to enhance our public street system,” says Dave Mandyke, the City’s Public Works & Utilities Director.  “As we embrace multiple modes of transportation, we will continue to find new ways to improve safety for all street users.”

Sharrow markings are recommended to be placed 11-feet from the curb if on street parking exists. Without on-street parking, markings are placed at least 4-feet from the curb if used within a travel lane less than 14-feet.

To use a sharrow:

Bicyclists:

* Use the sharrow to guide where you ride within the lane – generally through the center of the sharrow when safe to do so.
* Remember not to ride too close to parked cars – watch for opening doors.
* Ride in the same direction as traffic.
* Be aware of your surroundings, and follow the rules of the road.

Drivers:

* Expect to see bicyclists in the travel lane.Pass to the left of the cyclist, using the adjacent travel lane.
* Remain behind the cyclist until it is safe to pass.
* Yield to on-coming bicyclists when turning and look right/behind you when making a right-hand turn.
* Be aware of your surroundings, and follow the rules of the road.

For more information on the Master Bike Plan visit spokaneplanning.org.