Research Parkway Pilot Program – Thoughts from the Cycling Community

Janine Hegeman: CSCC President & Lorena Wilder: Club Member

Photo by Mark Reis, 1 Nov 2016, The Gazette
Editor’s Note:  The person who submitted this Letter to the Editor is also a member of the Colorado Springs Cycling Club.  Thanks, Lorena, for providing facts that people need to consider as part of evaluation of this pilot program.
Bike lanes are a solution
Re: "Bike lanes are a disaster" - this is an issue where the public has, unfortunately, been ill-informed. Please check the Colorado Springs government website to find out that it hasn't ever been a question of whether or not Research Parkway will be reduced from three to two lanes each way, rather what will be done with the "space" created when the third lane is removed.
One option is to create a wider, parklike median or curb area. Another, brought forth by the cycling community, is to restripe and create bike lanes. The Research Parkway issue is about "right-sizing" this neighborhood roadway to make it safer by managing traffic speeds. Studies show that vehicles overwhelmingly speed on Research because it was designed with too many lanes. Additional information about this project can be found online at Bike Colorado Springs.
Specifically: Research Parkway was designed as a six-lane road to carry substantial volumes of traffic; that traffic load is now being carried by Briargate Parkway. For comparison, Research Parkway carries on six lanes a daily traffic volume of 20,114 (east of Voyager) to 22,108 (east of Lexington). This volume is less than many four-lane streets in Colorado Springs. Some examples include:
  • Fillmore Street west of Centennial (24,404);
  • Palmer Park Boulevard east of Powers (22,226);
  • Uintah Street west of I-25 (25,507); and
  • Woodmen west of Marksheffel (25,623).
Lorena Wilder,
Colorado Springs
Published in The Gazette 29 November 2016
Bent Fork 2016-6 - December 2016 / January 2017

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