Phoenix Says Progress Being Made On Bike Lanes, Not Everyone Agrees

Published: Monday, January 4, 2016 - 7:51am
Updated: Monday, January 4, 2016 - 3:51pm
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(Photo by Kathy Ritchie - KJZZ)
Reconfigured bike lane along 15th Avenue.
Kathy Ritchie/KJZZ
Bike lane along 15th Avenue near Glendale Avenue.

In the year since the Phoenix City Council adopted the Bicycle Master Plan, progress has been made. New and improved bike lanes have appeared, pavement markings have been redrawn, and bike racks and signage have been installed. But, some bicyclists would like to see more improvements.

The City of Phoenix considers the bike lane along 15th Avenue between McDowell Road and Northern Avenue a completed project, but ride up that stretch, and it’s easy to see why some bicyclists have concerns.

"Phoenix is still way behind other cities in terms of actually putting up physical barriers. We have zero protected bike lanes in our city," said Libby Coyner.

Coyner rides her bike every day. She’s also familiar with the city’s 20-year master bike plan. She was a member of the ad-hoc task force. Coyner acknowledges that improvements have been made, like extending the bike lane to the crosswalk area, but she said more needs to be done to improve safety.

"I feel like this department will put in a little bit of bike lane where it’s convenient for them, but you notice that the east/west routes, the bike lanes kind of disappears between the 7's," she explained.

That can make navigating the roads between 7th Avenue and 7th Street difficult. For its part, the city said progress is being made, including along those east/west corridors. Thomas Godbee is with the city’s streets department.

“Some of the corridors we’re looking at are Osborne, Missouri, 24th Street," Godbee said. "We’re getting some help from a consulting community analyzing those streets to see if it makes sense to add bike lanes and, if so, how those bikes lanes would fit in the exiting corridors.”

The city said it’s also looking to add bike lanes along Jefferson and Washington streets between the 7's. There are also plans to add a bike lane along 3rd Street and bicycle detection at 14 intersections. 

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