Set to come in 2019, the East Bancroft Way project will feature a two-way protected bike lane that will connect the Bowditch Bicycle Boulevard with UC Berkeley’s campus and the bike lanes on Piedmont Avenue. This will improve bicycle mobility and access to UC Berkeley, the Southside area, and the Northside area while also improving the performance of AC Transit buses on this stretch.
In order to accommodate these changes the number of travel lanes will be reduced to two, with one of them being a red bus-only lane. This restructuring is actually a smart move: Cyclists currently have to maneuver around vehicles on the street and many vehicles are found on the bus-only lane. By giving cyclists their own safe place to ride, and making the bus-only signage clearer; motorists can more calmly transit this stretch of Bancroft, cyclists can now ride more safely and comfortably, pedestrians can feel more comfortable walking on the sidewalks, and bus-stop times can become more reliable. Now that’s a win-win-win-win scenario!
The new East Bancroft Way should become a more walkable, bikeable road that everyone can feel safer on, and is just one section of the larger Southside Pilot Project. The ultimate goal is to make Southside safer to travel on bike and by foot, more convenient to travel via bus, and more welcoming for the thousands of people who transit the Southside area.