Hillsborough County Bike Lanes Go Green to Improve Safety
Hillsborough County kicked-off a safety improvement project designed to increase the visibility of existing bike lanes at various signalized intersections countywide. The initial installation of the green pavement markings in intersection transition areas for marked bicycle lanes is expected to take place over the next three months, and then will be ongoing as the enhanced markings will be incorporated into future Capital Improvement Projects.
The approaches at each of the intersections are being marked with an approximately 20-foot-long solid green rectangle to remind drivers of the cycling lane. At the end of each approach, where right turns are allowed, a dashed white line with dashed green boxes will identify conflict areas where vehicles are permitted to merge into the bike lane before making a turn and where cyclists can continue straight through the intersection.
Before and After bike lanes project
The green bike lane markings, which apply Vision Zero principles, will be a model for the County's future intersection, roadway, and corridor projects. The intersections were chosen mainly due to traffic volume and to promote a clearer understanding of the lane's purpose.
Current traffic laws and operation remain the same in bike lanes with newly-installed green pavement markings. Bike lane rules that drivers and bicyclists should know:
- It is legal for vehicles to drive over bike lanes when making a turn or parking; this includes locations with green pavement markings.
- When the green pavement marking in the bike lane is dashed, rather than solid green, it means that this is a Merge Zone where drivers may cautiously enter to make a turn.
- When drivers are turning right at a bike lane, they should signal before entering the Merge Zone, yield to bicyclists in the bike lane and complete their turn when safe to do so.
- The green markings are constructed of thermoplastic material. This is the first application of this type of enhanced roadway marking in unincorporated Hillsborough County.
Intermittent lane closures will be necessary during installation. Work will be performed during the daytime hours between 9 a.m. and 4 p.m. Hillsborough County apologizes for any inconvenience caused by this construction project and looks forward to improving traffic flow countywide with this safer and more bicycle-friendly system.