Future design rendering courtesy BikeLongBeach.org.
UPDATE 2:47pm | In a press release from the City of Long Beach this afternoon, Mayor Bob Foster praised the upcoming bike lane construction.
"This bicycle project is an example of what makes Long Beach a leader in improving mobility," he said. “As a regular cyclist myself, I know that this lane will greatly improve road safety for both bicycles and cars in Downtown Long Beach.”
As shown in the photo above, Broadway and 3rd Street will be converted from three one-way lanes to a new setup that includes the bike lane, a parking lane, and two traffic lanes.
The release adds that money for the project comes from local transportation funds, and not the City's general fund. There already seems to be a fair amount of debate going on in our Comments section below, so let me fan the flames a bit:
Do you agree or disagree with the use of transportation funding to build the two proposed bike paths in downtown Long Beach?
10:59am | Construction is expected to begin soon on a large downtown project to add bicycle lanes along both Broadway and 3rd Street (map below), as Long Beach continues its effort to become more bike-friendly.
In many places, the biking lanes will eliminate one driving lane. Construction is slated to begin on Monday, January 31 and expected to finish in mid-March.
The project aims to make bicyclists more comfortable, citing studies that show people are more likely to ride bikes if they do not have to mix with automobile traffic. The new lanes will create a safe passageway for bicyclists with a barrier separating them from traffic.
In the interest of safety, one of the most significant changes will be specialized traffic signals for both drivers and bicyclists. Drivers may only turn left on specific green turn lights while bikers will also have a set of their own traffic lights to obey at some intersections.
For images and a helpful Frequently Asked Questions section, visit this page on BikeLongBeach.org.
More information is expected to be released later today.
Image courtesy Google Maps