San Francisco raises its bike lanes (and does much more)

These are San Francisco’s plans for 2016 as regard bicycles: construction of an elevated cycling lane, elimination of traffic deaths by 2024 and reduction of bike thefts.

San Francisco is the first US city to build an elevated cycling path. A raised bikeway has recently been constructed in Market Street, a traffic-congested street always packed with cyclists. The bicycle barometer, indeed, recorded as much as one million bike trips in Market Street last year. The raised bikeway generated discussions about the opportunity  to create partially protected bike lanes. Some people say that the path, which is slightly raised from the pavement, doesn’t prevent drivers from parking in it.


san francisco bike
The city of San Francisco plans to improve bike infrastructures and street safety in 2016. © Flickr


Elevated cycling lanes, which have been built also in the Netherlands and Denmark, are still being tested in San Francisco. In fact, new designs are being experimented and a new survey was also conducted to determine which raised bicycle lanes will best serve the city’s cyclists.


San Francisco also planned to build eleven new cycling lanes in 2016. These projects are included in the Raised Bikeway Demonstration Project, estimated to be concluded by February 2016, along with the Vision Zero project, aimed to eliminate traffic deaths by 2024.


San Francisco’s police also contribute to make the city bike-friendlier: there are police patrols, as well as a Twitter account to raise awareness of bike thefts. A GPS system connected to the police and installed in the bicycles is also available to recover stolen bikes.


San Francisco also has a public transport system that reaches out to those who travel by bike: there are buses equipped front-mounted bike racks, trains with a separate coach for bicycles, subways with spaces where there are no seats, for those who travel with a bike.

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