By Aaron Skabelund, Provo Bicycle Committee Chair
Every summer and fall, when Provo City Public Works performs work on roads, city engineers seek to implement recommendations for bicycle lanes called for by the Bicycle Master Plan, adopted by the city council in 2014. Although the bicycling community would like change to happen even faster and more dramatically, we are thankful to Engineering for the progress that the city is making in creating a truly integrated network of lanes and trails that residents can use for both bicyclingâ€”both recreation and utilitarian (riding to school, work, and to run errands).
At this monthâ€™s committee meeting, city traffic engineers officiallyâ€”and compared to past yearsâ€”belatedly announced this summerâ€™s bike lane improvements. But it was worth the wait. Here are some of this yearâ€™s projects (some of which are well underway now):
– Bike lanes on 500 West from 300 South to the new Westside Connector at about 2000 South. (This one is huge! Finally residents of southwest Provo will have a safe option to ride into the city center.)
– Lanes on Indian Hills Drive/2780 North.
– Lanes on 900 West between Center Street and 500 North (another really important stretch).
In addition, Matt Parker, UDOTâ€™s Region Threeâ€™s bicycle coordinator announced at the meeting that UDOT would be installing bike lanes on University Avenue from near the mouth of Provo Canyon all the way down to 700 North this fall.
We would also like to publiclyâ€”and yes, belatedlyâ€”thank Public Works for the improvements that were completed last year, in 2015. They included:
The addition of bike lanes on 2300 North and 1450 East near Rock Canyon
Looking east on 2300 North
Headed west on 2300 North (the Provo Temple is on the left)
At the intersection of 2300 North/1450 East and the road to the Rock Canyon parking lot
Facing the other direction near the intersection of 2300 North/1450 East and road to the Rock Canyon parking lot
Climbing south on 1450 East
Again, the view to the north on 1450 East
The extension of the lanes on 3700 North to the intersection at University Avenue (where Willâ€™s Pit Stop is).
Looking toward 50 West and University Avenue on 3700 North (on an inversion day when more people besides the photographer need be bicycling)
The extension of the lanes on 620 North to Geneva Road eliminating a one to two block gap
Heading west on 620 North approaching Geneva Road
620 North and Geneva Road
A reconfiguration of the bike lanes (through the elimination of the center median and restoration of on-street parking) on Independence Avenue from Center Street to 820 West.
Independence Avenue headed south close to Center Street
Independence Avenue near 500 North
Independence Avenue near Freedom Prep Academy just south of 820 North
Again, a huge thank you to everyone in Provo who is working on making our streets safer for all road users. Get out and ride the new lanes (and check out the roads where we’ll be seeing even more lanes soon).