City of Lakewood: Add a bike lane to the resurfacing plan for Madison Avenue in Lakewood. View our proposal here.
Currently within the City of Lakewood’s Bicycle Master Plan, and the proposed plan for resurfacing Madison Avenue, the recommended bicycle treatment is a series of sharrows. Studies show that sharrows do serve a purpose for creating awareness and have some minor impacts on safe riding practices, but because they don’t attract new riders and are used primarily by established cyclists, they effectively work the same as streets without infrastructure. Bike lanes have been shown to dramatically increase cycling participation which in turn makes the roadways safer for all users. The local cycling traffic is also a boon to local businesses.
Bike Cleveland and the City of Cleveland recently succeeded in getting approval for bike lanes on Detroit ave from W25th to W75th (to be implemented next year). The project provides an excellent benchmark for Madison.
Some commonly raised concerns about implementing bike lanes include:
1. Concern: Truck traffic
Response: According to the 2010 traffic counts conducted, and noted in the Lakewood Bicycle Master Plan, the daily traffic count is 9,900 vehicles and only 2% of that traffic is from trucks. The slightly narrower driving lanes required with a bike lane layout tend to have a traffic calming effect which improves safety.
2. Concern: Safety
Response: Bike lanes may be a little more expensive, but they improve safety. Though cycling in the city of New York more than doubled in the last four years, the number of fatal cycling crashes and serious injuries declined due to the safer bike network. New York City added 255 miles of bike lanes in those four years. Bike lanes make roads safer for all users. This conclusion is supported by findings in cities all across the country.
3. Concern: Madison is not wide enough for bike lanes
Response: Street width on Madison varies from 44ft between W. 117th and Lakewood Blvd and then increases to a range of 48 to 56 ft. all the way to Riverside Drive. The City of Cleveland is putting a bike lane on Detroit Avenue (between W. 25th and Lake Ave.) without removing on-street parking and the street width is only 48ft. Based on that project Madison can have a continuous bike lane between W. 117th and Riverside Drive.
4. There is not much time in the planning stages of the Madison resurfacing. We need action now!
According to the Lakewood Bicycle Master Plan Madison Avenue is a street that is “frequently used for bicycling” and that in 2010 there were “fewer than 50 bicycle accidents in Lakewood and the majority of these accidents occurred on Detroit or Madison, both commercial corridors where bike travel is frequent.”
There is not much time remaining in the planning stages of the Madison resurfacing. We need your powerful voice in this call to action for Lakewood. We need you to act now. We need you to ensure that Lakewood is creating a street that enables safe, effective, and comfortable access and travel for all users. Take the bold step by telling Lakewood to put bike lanes on Madison when it is repaved in 2013 and ensure that Lakewood lives up to its desire to be the “most bicycle friendly community in the country.”
Show support by reading the letter below to Lakewood city officials and signing your name to the petition. Be sure to include your address in the petition, especially if you are a Lakewood resident.
Petition by Ben Van Lear, Lakewood resident
and Bike Cleveland