New bike lane design on Tucson street

A TucsonVelo reader sent me an email asking what was up with the new bike lanes on Mountain Avenue between Roger and Limberlost roads.

Mountain Avenue Tuesday morning.

Tucson Department of Transportation traffic engineer Diahn Swartz, who is responsible for traffic studies, signage and striping, said this bike lane is different than other parts of Mountain Avenue because they were two separate projects with different plans. But she said she wanted to keep a buffered bike lane all the way from the Rillito to the University of Arizona.

“I observed that there was a lot of excess pavement, so I contrived a design that achieved the buffer without the stamped asphalt,” Swartz said.

By Tuesday evening, crews had added cross hatches between the two stripes, which Swartz said should help indicate it is a buffer and not a lane to ride in.

Mountain Avenue with cross hatch lines.

Crews also added an eight-inch stripe to the bike lane on Mountain Avenue between Ft. Lowell and Roger Road.

Members of the TPCBAC downtown subcommittee suggested the city try wider bike-lanes stripes to make them more noticeable to drivers.

What do you think of the new lanes?

9 comments
Brody
Brody

I ride Mountain every day. I like the dual lines with crosshatching near Rillito A LOT; there's no mistaking that as a line of demarcation. The lanes with the brick-textured strips are useless; the orange paint was obliterated within a few days of being driven over - and they are driven over regularly because carheads see a lane big enough for their tanks to drive in and they assume ownership. I can't tell you how many cars I see driving in the bike lane on Mountain between Grant and Ft. Lowell. Paint me a big white visual barrier where those textured strips are, please. Make it glaringly obvious to the dense that the wide bike lane is not a car lane.

ChrisR
ChrisR

While I love all the work they've done on Mountain, I have to agree with Kathy that the array of stripes is confusing to both bikers and drivers. Also, the planted center medians seem to cause a constriction of traffic which could be hazardous to bikers. Finally, I think the biggest problem with the "improvements" is the addition of sloped concrete drainage in the bike lane. Your tire accidentally catches one of those and you'll be in for a nasty fall. Why couldn't they have gone with a design more like mountain between Ft. Lowell and Grant? It was perfect! I'm really thrilled that they're putting lights in, that's been the biggest concern with my commute down Mountain over the years.

ChrisR
ChrisR

While I love all the work they've done on Mountain, I have to agree with Kathy that the array of stripes is confusing to both bikers and drivers. Also, the planted center medians seem to cause a constriction of traffic which could be hazardous to bikers. Finally, I think the biggest problem with the "improvements" is the addition of sloped concrete drainage in the bike lane. Your tire accidentally catches one of those and you'll be in for a nasty fall. Why couldn't they have gone with a design more like mountain between Ft. Lowell and Grant? It was perfect! I'm really thrilled that they're putting lights in, that's been the biggest concern with my commute down Mountain over the years.

Red Star
Red Star

Her stripes make about as much sense as her Old Pueblo (stop) signage. Sure to give TPD, insurance companies, and cyclists a headache. She'll keep her job.

Red Star
Red Star

Her stripes make about as much sense as her Old Pueblo (stop) signage. Sure to give TPD, insurance companies, and cyclists a headache. She'll keep her job.

Kathy
Kathy

The project turned out great, but I think the large array of all the different stripes is confusing. Why can't we pick one and stick to it? Big stripes, fat stripes, cross hatched stripes, orange stamped asphalt, red brick pattern--doesn't it all mean the same? I ride to work on Mountain several times a week.

Kathy
Kathy

The project turned out great, but I think the large array of all the different stripes is confusing. Why can't we pick one and stick to it? Big stripes, fat stripes, cross hatched stripes, orange stamped asphalt, red brick pattern--doesn't it all mean the same? I ride to work on Mountain several times a week.

Zen
Zen

Rode it today and I like it! I like buffered bike lanes. Why not just more of the red brick pattern to make it look the same as the rest of Mountain? Money?

Zen
Zen

Rode it today and I like it! I like buffered bike lanes. Why not just more of the red brick pattern to make it look the same as the rest of Mountain? Money?