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Phoenix installs first protected bike lanes to secure riders, drivers

(Photo: City of Phoenix)

PHOENIX — The city of Phoenix has installed the first protected bike lanes in the city on Tuesday, a press release announced.

The city’s Street Transportation Department installed the bike lanes on 15th Avenue between Van Buren and Jefferson streets. The lanes include painted lanes with flexible bollards — short, sturdy posts.

Both the lanes and the bollards “give bicyclists more protection while clearly signaling to drivers the potential presence of bike traffic,” according to the press release. The bollards also stop drivers from parking in bike lanes.

The move was part of the city’s Bicycle Master Plan from 2014, a comprehensive plan to help build a well-connected bike network that will make “bicycling safer and easier throughout Phoenix.”

In a statement, Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton called the move “the first step in our effort to build safe, protected bike lanes in the city of Phoenix.”

“We’re sending the message that everyone deserves to feel safe on our streets – and these new protections have already improved the transit experience for drivers, cyclists and pedestrians,” he added.

Quinn Tempest, a member of the Citizens Transportation Commission, said in a statement that the implementation of the lane is a “huge step forward for Phoenix.”

“I see this as a symbol that the City is serious about creating a future transportation network where every mode has a safe and equitable stake on the road. This first protected bike lane is a promising beginning to realizing that vision,” the statement read.

Efforts to make Phoenix more cycling-friendly kicked off in 2015, when the roadway striping at major intersections on 15th Avenue between Dunlap Avenue and Van Buren Street was “reconfigured” to create lanes for bikes and buses, according to the press release.

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