Physically Separated Bike Lanes

by Clarence Eckerson, Jr. on February 17, 2007

Source: StreetFilms > Physically Separated Bike Lanes

Physically Separated Bike Lanes Diagram

Advocates from Transportation Alternatives, The Project for Public Spaces, and The Open Planning Project join “Gridlock Sam” Schwartz and Enrique Penalosa to call for New York City to consider experimenting with some form of physically separated bike lanes in the near future.

Featuring ample footage and photos from over a dozen cities worldwide, this video makes the case that America is woefully behind the curve in protecting its cyclists in big cities.

Though this video is NYC-centric in nature, all lessons and video easily apply to cities across the U.S.


  1. I am ENTIRELY in agreement that protected bike lanes are only a band-aid approach. Physically separated bike lines are as one of the interviewees simply enough for a child to use. That should be the measure against which all “improvements” are judged.

  2. If you can only spend time viewing a single video clip on this site, this is the one that should be your choice. It spells out in detail some of the problems with separated bike lanes while offering insights into how city planners the world over are attempting to tackle the problems these lanes introduce.

    No single solution is adequate for all locations and I like the honestly with which this video treats that issue. My worry is that not enough cycling advocates are willing to be critical of their own ideas because they want to get “something, anything” done for political purposes and are like car salespersons who are more focused on closing the deal than getting the customer into the best possible car for their needs.

    Of course customers can sometimes focus on the price tag of the vehicle to the exclusion of all else. And that my friends is the state of American Politics at the moment. We are willing “to be penny-wise and pound-foolish” because we don’t value the role that government has to play in creating infrastructure for alternative means of transportation.

    One can only hope this changes in future. In the meantime we need to continue to teach Vehicular Cycling to support those suburban and rural cyclists who won’t have the benefit of physically separated bike lanes anytime soon.

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