Cycling in Edmonton
New Cycling Infrastructure
The City is looking at new kinds of bike lanes for Edmonton’s future.
The detailed designs for downtown’s core area bike routes are part of ongoing public engagement for this project, but as a primer, here are some of the specific types of bike lanes you will be hearing about:
Roundabout in Bike Boulevard
Bike boulevards look different depending on the road being modified to create this kind of bike lane, however, they do have the following in common:
- Provide shared road space that gives priority to cyclists and pedestrians
- Roadways are modified to lower traffic volumes and speeds
- Create an inviting, safe and attractive community space
Cycle Track a.k.a. Protected Bike Lane
Seattle Cycle Track
- Provides space exclusively for bicycles
- Physically separated from motor vehicle traffic, parked cars and sidewalks
- Minimizes conflicts between cyclists, pedestrians and drivers
Bicycle Contra-flow Lane
Edmonton Contra Flow Lane
- Allows cyclists to travel against the flow of traffic on one-way street
- Marked by painted lines and signage
Current Bike Routes Projects
In May 2014 the City started planning for two major bike routes in the central part of Edmonton.
102 Avenue (Downtown)
A bikeway on 102 Avenue from 96 to 136 Street is planned to start construction in 2016.
83 Avenue (Strathcona)
A bikeway on 83 Avenue from Mill Creek Ravine to 111 Street is planned to start construction in 2016.
Why Bike Routes are Important
Edmonton’s population is growing by 3.7 % every year. That means 30,000 more people are making this city their home every year. We have to start moving people more efficiently. By providing transportation options, like adding bike routes, expanding LRT, and making the city more walkable, we can reduce traffic congestion, enhance the city’s livability and reduce our carbon footprint.
Cars and trucks will remain key ways of moving around in Edmonton but by installing bike routes we are ensuring that, no matter which way you choose to travel, the City has planned with your needs in mind.
Quality cycling infrastructure that connects people to the places they want to go encourages cycling as a safe and healthy alterative for travelling around the city. We’ve heard from the public that they would like to see more protected bike lanes in Edmonton. And that’s exactly the type of cycling infrastructure we will be exploring in core areas of the city. We know that 31% of the trips Edmontonians make in their vehicles could be travelled by bike in 13 minutes or less. We want to make those trips easier and more comfortable.
Finally, Bike routes make it easier and safer for cyclists and motorist to follow the rules when sharing the road. They reduce the risk of collisions and make the behaviour of motorists and cyclists more predictable on the road.
What the B*ke Campaign
The What the B*ke campaign aims to restart the conversation on bike lanes by:
- Showcasing the benefits of cycling
- Outlining the reasons to build quality cycling infrastructure
- Promoting opportunities for input on the proposed bike routes for 83 and 102 Avenues
Listen to the radio spots
Get the latest news
Let's Get There Together
Cyclists and motorists have the same rights and responsibilities. Let’s treat each other with respect; when passing give each other space - 1 metre is best.
Bike infrastructure increases comfort for both motorists and cyclists, but the rules of the road still need to be followed.
The bike box, a large green-painted square with a white bike symbol, makes intersections better for everyone, allowing cyclists to clear the intersection ahead of cars. This makes cyclists more visible and helps motorists and cyclists watch out for each other.
What Are They?
- All are marked with an image of a bicycle and a diamond.
- Dedicated exclusively to cyclists.
- There are four variations: solid lines, dashed lines, contraflow, and a buffered zone.
- The buffered zone creates added space between the cyclist and motor vehicles.
- Contraflow bike lanes allow cyclists to ride against traffic on a one-way street. The contraflow bike lane is seperated from the opposing driving lane by a solid yellow line and marked with an arrow indicating the direction of travel.
- Motorists can't drive, stop or park within bike lanes.
- Motorists can cross a bike lane when turning into access ways or driveways, and when parking is permitted between the bike lane and the curb - once they have shoulder checked for cyclists.
Dashed Bike Lane - What Do I Do?
When the solid line marking becomes dashed, motorists who want to turn right should shoulder check to look for a cyclist and then, when safe, enter the lane.
Just remember: Solid line, stay in mine. Dashed line, yield then turn.
Bike lanes are dashed before intersections:
- to allow motor vehicles to move to the right to make a right turn
- to indicate to cyclists where a left turn bay starts ahead of an intersection
- at bus stops
The Bike Lane is dashed - what do I do?
Road Markings and Street Signs
What Are They?
- Indicates the road is to be shared between motorists and cyclists.
- The pavement markings consist of an image of a bicycle, capped by a pair of arrows called sharrows.
- Guide cyclists and remind drivers to expect cyclists in the same travel lane.
- Cyclists are encouraged to ride over the markings but are not required to as they are only a guide.
- The sharrow is on the right side of the lane when cars and bikes share the lane and in the middle when everyone must travel single file.
Just remember: When there's space, bikes on the right. Bikes in the middle when space is tight.
Yielding to Buses
When a bus is at a bus stop, the cyclist should either wait behind the bus or legally pass it on the left by making a proper lane change. The cyclist should not pass the bus on the right as they may conflict with people getting on or off the bus.
Learn how to ride and drive on Edmonton’s Shared-Use Lanes.
Shared-use pathways are off-road paths open to pedestrians and cyclists.
Edmonton has 430 km of paved and unpaved shared-use pathways, including:
- Shared-use pathways adjacent to roadway
- Shared-use pathways in the river valley
- Signed shared-use sidewalks
- Granular trails
- Unimproved recreational trails
- Cyclists are allowed to ride on sidewalks that are designated as a shared-use sidewalk.
- Shared-use sidewalks are typically 2.5 m or wider and are marked with signs that indicate that they are shared by cyclists and pedestrians.
- Cyclists must yield to pedestrians on shared-use sidewalks and ring their bell before passing.
- Bicycles with wheels less than 50 cm in diameter, such as children's bicycles, are permitted on any sidewalk.
A complete list of shared-use sidewalks is available under Bicycle Highways in the Traffic Listing Document.
Signed Bicycle Routes
Signed Bicycle Routes are cycle friendly roads with wider lanes and lower traffic volumes. Some lead to protected crossings like controlled intersections and pedestrian overpasses. Edmonton has 117 km of bike routes, including:
- Signed on street bike routes
- Service road routes
For more information:
13th Floor, Century Place
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