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Protected intersections - crucial infrastructure for safe cycling

The city of Davis, California has implemented a protected intersection, premiering such urban cycling infrastructure in the USA, modelled on the protected intersections from the Netherlands. In Early August 2015, the city leading the US in percentage of biking commuters implemented an intersection system that protects cyclists when taking right turns and dreaded left turns at intersections. At protected intersections, cyclists are separated from car traffic by corner refuge islands combined with forward stop bars that enable left hook turns, protecting cyclists by separating them from traffic turning left. Protected intersections, common in cycle-friendly cities like Amsterdam and Copenhagen, place cycle lanes next to crosswalks at intersections so cars turning right face cyclists upfront instead of side-by-side. Even if crossing the intersection without taking turns, cyclists are protected by separate lanes built inward from the car road, and by bicycle-friendly signal phasing conceding a head-start green light for cyclists or an outright red light for cars when bicycles are driving through the intersection. Find a video and more at:

After significantly reducing cyclist death and serious injury accidents by implementing protected bike lanes, city planners must now look towards intersections, where the majority of accidents happen. Research shows people use bicycles in the city if they feel safe – protected bike lanes and intersections are a definite move forward in this direction. And although there are more urban spatial constraints in Europe than in the USA, the case from Davis is an interesting example to share.

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Saturday, August 26, 2017
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