Tired of seeing the same old thing when you’re driving around town? Think you are one of those people who experience driving hypnosis? Then time to wake up and see the cyclists! Something new is coming to some Raleigh streets and it’s called the sharrow. Sharrows are markings applied directly to the pavement to direct cyclists to ride in the proper direction and raise motorist awareness of the potential presence of cyclists.
According to City of Raleigh Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator, Jennifer Baldwin, “The City’s first resurfacing project to include sharrows will be on Northclift Rd, from Six Forks Rd to Beardsley Rd. The project is scheduled for July 26-29. If everything goes as planned and with no delays, the sharrows should be painted on the 28th.”
More sharrows are planned for portions of Hillsborough St. and St. Mary’s St. You can see the planned areas and other updates for the Raleigh Bike Plan using the online tool at www.RaleighPedBikeMap.com and selecting the Raleigh: Planned Bike layer. By hovering over the various blue lines and clicking you can see greater detail.
The sharrows are only allowed in areas where the speed limit is under 45 mph, and in the 35 mph areas where they are planned in Raleigh, the sharrows will be placed every 250 feet. At this spacing, motorists will see reminders approximately every 5 seconds. Each sharrow is 9 1/3 feet long and 3 1/3 feet wide, so they will be visible to motorists and cyclists. Incorporating bicycle and pedestrian infrastructure into the fabric of the Triangle’s roadways and towns will be important in reducing traffic and maintaining safety and green space as we continue to grow. So be on the lookout for this new feature on Raleigh’s roadways… and share the road.
After posting this I received this update below from the Town of Cary on sharrows to be seen there soon. Enjoy!
“The Town of Cary will be installing shared lane markings, or “sharrows”, and bicycle signs on portions of three roads in Cary. Kildaire Farm Rd. from Walnut St. to Cary Pkwy., Waldo Rood Blvd. from Cary Pkwy to Davis Dr. and NW Maynard Rd. from Old Weatherstone Way to Kildaire Farm Rd. Sharrows are characterized by a bicycle symbol and a directional chevron and are used to assist bicyclists with lateral positioning, alert road users to the proper positioning of bicycles, encourage safe passing of bicyclists by motorists and reduce the incidence of wrong-way bicycling. Share The Road bicycle signs will be placed on all three roadways and a new bicycle commuter will be signed on Kildaire Farm Rd from Ten Ten Rd to Walnut St.
Under North Carolina State law, bicycles are considered vehicles and share the same rights and responsibilities on the road as motor vehicles. As a nationally recognized bicycle friendly community, the Town continues to look for ways to safely and efficiently accommodate all modes of travel. These sharrows will be part of a pilot program in Cary and are the first time this type of pavement marking has been used in town. The program will be implemented in two phases, the first phase will occur this fall and include temporary painted markings. Permanent, thermoplastic markings will be installed in the summer of 2011 after ensuring the program and the symbol locations work for Cary citizens. The sharrows will be installed approximately every 250’ and the center of the sharrow will be located 5’ from the face of the travel lane curb.”