Big Ideas for Berkeley's Next Wave of Bike Improvements

At Berkeley’s Bicycle Subcommittee Mtg May 9, one of the largest crowds in a long time enjoyed being the first to see initial ideas to include in an update to Berkeley’s Bicycle Master Plan, in the works and scheduled for a December 2016 City Council approval. Staff are considering 15 protected bike lane projects, 6 protected intersection improvements, and a goal that Berkeley’s complete bikeway network be a low stress comfortable network of bikeways for all ages and abilities. It’s an ambitious plan.

There will be an opportunity for your input late August 2016 when the draft bicycle plan is released to the public. Initial feedback from the large crowd of residents at the May 9 subcommittee mtg was approval of the protected facilities and that the Milvia Street bicycle boulevard is being given top priority. In fact, a collision map showed at the meeting clearly shows how Milvia has too many crashes. Attendees did want more focus for bicycling to school, given Berkeley’s three diagonal school districts, which make it difficult for parents to bike kids to school.

Here is a proposed map

  • Yellow are proposed protected bike lanes
  • Thick blue lines are neighborhood bicycle boulevards
  • In general, solid lines are existing facilities and dashed lines are proposed facilities or facilities yet to be built
  • “H” are HAWK Signals at intersections, which are a form of on-demand traffic light that stop cross traffic for a safe bike crossing. One is coming to Hillegass-Ashby soon
  • “P” are protected intersections
  • “R” are rapid flashing beacons like the one in front of the Ed Roberts Campus

There will be a Bicycle Subcommittee Mtg in September after the August open house, as well as review and approval by the Transportation Commission in October, with a planned approval by City Council in December 2016.

Meanwhile, Fulton Street gets two blocks of new protected bike lanes for Bike to Work Day and then staff are busy working on a design to add protected bike lanes on Bancroft Way, between Dana Street and Shattuck Avenue, to be constructed in 2017 as part of a repaving project.

You can stay up to date on Berkeley’s new bike plan here: www.bikeberkeley.com