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Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Denver’s five-year, 125-mile bike lane project is halfway through

Cyclists are riding high after Denver added nearly 70 miles of bike lanes over the past three years.

The additional ones are part of Denver’s five-year plan to add 125 miles of bike lanes by 2024, which has cost the city a record $13.4 million so far. The new bike lanes are part of Denver Moves, an ongoing assessment of the city’s bicycle accessibility.

One of the goals is to establish “high-comfort” bike lanes—which the city defines as protected or giving cyclists greater ownership of the road—within a quarter mile of every home, says Jennifer Hillhouse, a city transporter. Mobility said planning director.

Hillhouse said 73% of Denver homes are now so close. The city could also “tweak” some bike lanes if they cause traffic or safety issues, she said.

“What we find is that as we narrow roadways with setting up bike lanes, we’re adding friction to our roads, so people are slowing down and eventually vary depending on the aisle. Choosing a route,” Hillhouse said.

The three areas where bike lanes are being implemented are city neighbourhoods, the central-south part of the city and the north-west corridor.

One project that has been completed is a half-mile alleyway along 50th Avenue from Tennyson Street to Lowell Boulevard. One project to be completed this year is a 1.5-mile lane along 15th Street from Blake Street to Central Street.

After the 125-mile project, Hillhouse said the city would focus on the Globeville and Elyria-Swansea neighborhoods.

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Hillhouse said Denver estimates it will need about 400 miles more bike lanes to meet the growing number of people in the area by 2050. The Department of Transportation and Infrastructure currently manages 254 miles of bike lanes, she said, and it will have more than 300 miles when the five-year project is completed. This does not include bike lanes managed by the Department of Parks and Recreation.

DOTI spokeswoman Vanessa LaCayo told BusinessDay that the goal isn’t to get as many miles as possible — it’s about trying to connect people with routes throughout the city.

“We’re a growing city … and so we know it’s important for us to offer other options,” Hillhouse said. “People will continue to drive. But to serve our residents, we need many options for people to move around in our city safely. ,

Mayor Michael Hancock’s “Mobility Action Plan” set long-term goals for all modes of transport, with a goal of increasing bicycle, walking or public transport trips by 30% within the next decade to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. does.

Hillhouse said the city is testing a pilot program that tracks the number of cyclists using lanes and will compile that data to determine how much of each lane is being used.

Separate maps of where bike lanes have been completed, are under construction or are planned are available on the city’s Community Transportation Network website.

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