Protected bike lanes (PBLs) are separated from traffic by a lane of parked cars, or a row of bollards, or a concrete curb. We are asking Mayoral candidates to update the City's 2012 Pedestrian and Bicycle Plan and to commit to building 40 in 4: forty miles of protected bike lanes in four years.
The additional safety features of PBLs create the conditions necessary for cycling across to flourish. In many other cities in the United States, PBLs have caused dramatic increases in cycling. New York City has installed PBLs along avenues using a lane of parked cars and simple pedestrian islands at wide intersections to shorten the crossing distance.
Since Indego bike share launched this year, biking has become more mainstream in Philadelphia. The addition of hundreds of novice cyclists on our streets daily increases the need to physically separate cyclists from automobiles. That's because PBLs clarify the rules of the road between cars, bikes, and pedestrians. It's not just cyclists who benefit from reduced stress levels and increased safety; drivers benefit from fewer car-car crashes on streets with PBLs.
A network of safe transportation infrastructure is critical not only for current cyclists but also as a means to encourage future cyclists to discover the many benefits of cycling. In some places, access to a city-wide network of PBLs can be truly transformative for families and individuals. Many Philadelphia neighborhoods are challenged by a mix of low household income, low car-ownership rates, long transit commute times, and poor public health. The bicycle - an affordable, fast, efficient, reliable mode of transportation - can be transformative in the lives of many Philadelphians who are not being adequately served by the City.
For a more detailed explanation watch the video below: