Bike Lanes for Carlisle Next Year


This is old news, but I haven’t been paying attention, so it’s new news for me.

Carlisle is getting some new bike lanes next year!

Planned bike lanes

Evidently, the borough government decided that having a pair of four-lane highways running right through the downtown was not such a good idea. So they’re implementing a “road diet” which includes the cycle lanes.

This is what it looks like now:

This is what it’ll look like when the project is done:

Nice, right?

There’s a bunch of PDF files explaining the whole project on the borough website.

Incidentally, there’s a guy running for Mayor of Harrisburg who has as part of his platform:

“Eliminate the six lane, divided highway called Front and Second”

Maybe there’s hope for the same kind of “road diet” treatment in downtown Harrisburg.

5 thoughts on “Bike Lanes for Carlisle Next Year

  1. I dunno. Calling the door zone a bicycle lane just doesn’t look that appealing to me. If you follow these guidelines, you may as well ride just to the left of the bike lane. And how many of those car driving types are going to tolerate you being where they think you shouldn’t be? I think (hope) they’re doing this for the right reasons, but the bike lanes are poorly implemented. Cyclists are better off taking the right lane in the current configuration.

  2. No, not so nice. Putting cycle lanes up against parking bays is asking for someone to open their car door directly into the path of a cyclist, a particularly nasty injury. The lane gives the cyclist a false sense of security and drivers won’t let you occupy the space on the road you need to to avoid this hazard if there is a lane there. There needs to be a hatched buffer zone between the cars and the cycle lane.

    Secondly the bike lane makes it extremely difficult for the cyclist who wants to turn left to get into the left turn lane and even to go straight in (though the £d mock up doesn’t show the right turn lane that is in the plan view). because once the lane is there drivers will expect cyclists to be in it. Consider this arrangement from Cambridge UK (reverse left and right, obviously):

  3. Yeah, the bike lane is in the door zone. Each of the bike lanes is 5 feet wide. I read someplace that 8 feet is the “official” recommended width.

    If I were designing it, I’d probably have used sharrows instead of dedicated lanes, but for a car-crazy place like Carlisle, it’s pretty cool.

  4. In my opinion, the goal of the project is to divert truck traffic from downtown, and the bike lanes are the means to do it. I’ve had no trouble riding with traffic through the square by holding right-center lane far enough out from the door zone, but I think the type of riders that will be attracted to this (seniors and Dickinson students) aren’t going to be so attentive.
    Ideally, it will catch on and be expanded, and then improved – I really think Carlisle has the right topography and culture to become a bicycle-centric town. I hope they get it right and it catches on.

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