Bike Lanes Are Coming to … Washington Avenue?

Busy thoroughfare will be repainted, end to end.

PlanPhilly reports that Washington Avenue, the major east-west thoroughfare in South Philly, will be repainted with bike lanes—an effort to reduce deaths and injuries where one bicyclist is injured, on average, every three weeks.

As part of this project, bike lanes will be painted from end to end. The bike lanes will be positioned between the vehicle travel lanes and the parked cars. When PCPC and the consultants held a public meeting in November, there was talk of making buffered bike lanes or putting the bike lanes between the sidewalk and the parked cars, creating a cycle track.

Adam Vest, a project consultant, said the consultants chose not to create a cycle track because the curb juts out at each intersection. If there were a cycle track, bicyclists would have to maneuver around these bumpouts rather than travel in a relatively straight line. A cycle track or buffered bike lanes would have required a lot more room and a mix of angle parking and parallel parking on the same blocks. Instead, consultants chose non-buffered bike lanes.

“I know it sounds minimal, but just having paving markings out there and making sure they’re clean and fresh and people know what they’re doing is a start,” Vest said.

Bike lanes on one of the city’s most heavily trafficked roads? Stu Bykofsky, call your office, stat!