Can Bike Signals Make Biking Safer?

Can Bike Signals Make Biking Safer?

We have been focusing a lot of attention on the safety of pedestrians and bikers. Another element that could help the safety of Montgomery County residents are bike signals or boxes, similar to walk signals. Bike boxes were just recognized by American engineers to be included in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD), according to Angie Schmitt. These bike signals are used like walk signals, to “reduce conflicts between people on bikes and turning drivers, give cyclists a head start at intersections, or create a separate phase entirely for bicycle traffic.” Before these signals were approved and recognized by the MUTCD, any neighborhood or community wanting to install them had to conduct engineering studies to test if the signals would make a difference. These studies became so expensive that it often hindered communities from trying. Since the signals are approved by the MUTCD, the studies are no longer necessary.

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Source: Bike Portland

Is this something we want in White Flint? Do you think bike signals will make biking safer? Will it help attract more bikers to the area if they know there are extra safety precautions in place?

Share your thoughts!

Rebecca Hertz

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Rebecca Hertz is the Assistant Executive Director of Friends of White Flint. She received her Bachelor’s Degree in International Development and Social Change from Clark University, Worcester Massachusetts in 2012. She completed her Master’s Degree from Clark University, as well, in Community Development and Planning in 2013. She is interested in how built environments impact the health and growth of communities. Prior to this role, she worked as a youth worker and mentor for several non-profit organizations in Maryland and Massachusetts. She grew up in Rockville, MD and has recently moved back to the region.

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