Today’s Headlines

  • Business Owners: Milwaukee Protected Lanes Will Bring Customers (Sun-Times)
  • Cyclist Gets $50K Settlement After Driver Lies About Running Red Light (Kevenides)
  • 49th Ward Residents Vote for Sharrows on Clark, Sheridan Ped Safety Study (DNA)
  • Suburban Developer Wants to Replace Historic Wrigley Factory With Big Box Stores (DNA)
  • CNT Study Shows Chicago Lags Behind Other Cities in Transit-Oriented Development (Tribune)
  • Some Red Line Riders Still Not in the Loop About Red Line Shutdown (Sun-Times)
  • CTA Gets Ready to Run Shuttle Buses During Red Line Rehab (RedEye)
  • Pawar: Parking Meter Deal Highlights Need for Independent Budget Office (DNA)
  • Norquist Says Building Hyde Park Tower Near Transit Would Ease Congestion (DNA)
  • City to Pay $325K Misconduct Settlement Against Top DUI Enforcement Cop (Tribune)

Get national headlines at Streetsblog Capital Hill

  • CL

    I live in the 49th ward. I voted for the pedestrian safety study, but not for the bike lanes because it’s going to be the “shared” type — so the use of the road won’t change at all. Basically, they’re going to spend $75,000 to paint pictures of bikes on the road. I don’t see the point of this, when every road is already a shared lane — I think the markings just confuse people. An actual bike lane would be different, because the markings would mean something, but I guess Clark isn’t wide enough for that.

    Hopefully the pedestrian safety study will conclude that we shouldn’t make pedestrians wait half an hour before they can cross the street.

  • While they’re not as helpful as conventional bike lanes, let alone protected lanes, studies have shown that shared-lane markings, AKA “sharrows,” with a line striped to the right of the bike-and-chevron symbols, improve safety. They encourage drivers to park closer to the curb, leaving more room for cyclists. They remind motorists to watch out for bikes. And they encourage moving cars to keep to the left side of the travel lane, giving people on bikes a wider berth.

  • CL

    I worry that the markings make people think they have to drive on the left side of the lane (closer to oncoming traffic) at all times. When I first saw these markings in Andersonville, I thought I couldn’t drive on that part of the road at all, even when there were no cyclists present, because I didn’t understand that it wasn’t a regular bike lane — but the road is so narrow that avoiding the right 1/3 of the road at all times is unsafe. So I don’t really view that as a positive, but I can see the benefits of getting people to park closer to the curb, and maybe alerting drivers who aren’t used to the city that they might encounter cyclists.

  • I can understand how driving closer to the center line might make drivers feel uneasy, just as narrower travel lanes do. Both are good for discouraging speeding. In general, when motorists feel that conditions are hazardous, they drive slower and with greater care, which actually makes things safer for them and everyone else.