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An outdated parking rule in Pa. law threatens the safest kind of bike lanes - Philadelphia Inquirer

by Thomas Fitzgerald, The Philadelphia Inquirer.

PHOTO CREDIT: TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer The Philadelphia Inquirer
PHOTO CREDIT: TOM GRALISH / Staff Photographer The Philadelphia Inquirer

Bike lanes separated from traffic by parked vehicles on several busy state routes in Philadelphia have drawn flocks of cyclists, slowed cars, and reduced collisions, a study of the lanes shows. They also could be among the last of their kind in the city unless the state Senate acts to clarify the definition of a curb.


Parking-separated bike lanes have historically been barred on state-owned roads because Pennsylvania law requires parked vehicles to be within 12 inches of the curb, or the edge of the pavement.


The lanes, also referred to as “parking-protected,” are dedicated tracks for cyclists with a row of parked vehicles to shield them from being hit by cars and trucks. A marked 5-foot wide lane abuts the curb and drivers park on the other side of a safety buffer — putting them up to 8 feet from the curb, a violation of the Pennsylvania law.



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