Wednesday August 8, 2007
Sharrows to be painted on Second Street Bridge; Public service announcements to teach rules of the road
Mayor Jerry Abramson announced two new initiatives today designed to keep both drivers and cyclists safe on the streets.
“We want to encourage people to ride their bicycles throughout the city,” Abramson said. “But we have learned that drivers and cyclists needed some guidance on how to safely share the road.”
Public Works employees today are painting “sharrows” on the Second Street Bridge. These symbols, a bicyclist with two chevrons above, will be repeated along the right lanes of the bridge to remind drivers that cyclists will use those lanes, too. Additional signs attached to the bridge will read, “Shared Lane – Yield to Bikes”.
“The Second Street Bridge is the only Ohio River span in the region open to bicycle traffic,” Abramson said. “It’s important to remind drivers and cyclists to cooperate on those narrow lanes.”
The sharrows are the result of the city working with officials from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet because the bridge is owned and maintained by the state. “The transportation cabinet has been an important partner with us in getting approval for the sharrows, the first in the state,” Abramson said.
The mayor also announced a new series of public service announcements featuring local television news personalities. These four PSAs will explain basic road etiquette for both drivers and cyclists, including how to properly pass a bicycle and what hand signals cyclists should use. The announcements will begin airing by the end of the month.
Abramson also renewed his call to turn the Big Four Bridge into a walking-biking bridge. The project will require cooperation among the federal government, Metro Government, Indiana and Kentucky.
“Reusing the Big Four Bridge as a walking-biking bridge would extend our paths at Waterfront Park to the roads of our neighbors in southern Indiana,” said Abramson. “It would give bicyclists an alternative to riding the narrow lanes of the Second Street Bridge, and it would give new life to an otherwise obsolete piece of infrastructure.”