The Olympia Public Works Transportation Group proposed the inclusion of enhanced bike lanes in the Engineering Design and Development Standards or EDDS, tying it to future road works in the city.
Joey Johnson, a project engineer with the Public Works Transportation group, discussed the enhanced bike lanes at the Planning Commission meeting yesterday, August 1.
Johnson said the Public Works has been updating EDDS annually. This year, they are proposing three changes or additions that they wanted to add in the EDDS chapter 4, which discusses transportation:
"We are all used to seeing [traditional] the bike lanes out on the streets - you have your 10- to 11-foot typical travel vehicle travel lane and then a five-foot bike lane right next to that,” Johnson explained. The enhanced bike lane provides additional protection or more separation for cyclists.”
“It just enhances the five-foot lane,” added Johnson.
Why enhanced lanes can be expensive
Johnson cautioned that enhanced bike lanes could be expensive because they take up more space to create separation from the vehicle travel lane.
"We need more physical space, whether the additional right of way or whatnot. This can add a substantial cost. We need to be strategic, and we have to plan them," he said.
Building bike lanes
Johnson said their goal is for the enhanced bike lanes to become part of all arterials and major collectors. Arterial roads are streets with the highest volume of vehicles per day, while major collectors are the next level down with how many cars travel on them daily.
To add an enhanced bike lane, Johnson said there might be a need to widen the road itself and reconstruction. "When we have major road reconstruction projects, we could add enhanced bike lane at that time."
He also anticipated segments of enhanced bike lanes through frontage improvements in the development, whether commercial or residential.
New cost for real estate developers
The city would require developers to incorporate enhanced bike lanes on over 300 feet of frontage improvement.
The committee is currently looking at building enhanced bike lanes for the upcoming major street reconstructions at Fones Road, Mottman Road, Wiggins Road, and Martin Way.
Johnson presented five proposed bike lanes drawings they plan to include in the EDDS. He said it would be the standard for these projects and private developments:
"You need some sort of delineation where the bike lane is and where the sidewalk is to avoid conflicts between pedestrians and bicyclists," Johnson said, adding that his particular design is what they are looking at for Fones Road, Johnson noted.
Johnson added that the shared-used path should be used in an area with fewer bike and pedestrian volumes.
6 comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here