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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: September 8, 2023
Press Release: 23-0028

Contact: Brad Coy, P.E., PTOE - Traffic Engineering Director/Municipal Traffic Engineer, Municipality of Anchorage, 907-343-8070

Safer Streets for Biking in Anchorage: Pilot Protected Bike Lane Now Open
A joint statement from Assembly Member Volland and Mayor Bronson

(ANCHORAGE, Alaska) – Anchorage’s first Protected Bike Lane (PBL) is now open as a pilot project along Pine Street and McCarrey Street. The PBL Pilot Study aims to learn how protected bike lanes can be implemented to improve and provide safe, reliable access for pedestrians, bicycles, and transit riders. Come experience the temporary installations in the Pilot Study Corridor along Pine Street and McCarrey Street. Your feedback will guide future Protected Bike Lane improvements in Anchorage!

In cooperation with the Municipality of Anchorage (MOA), the Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities (DOT&PF) will be testing a variety of protected bike lane treatments that have proven successful around the country to evaluate their feasibility in Alaska. The project is funded entirely through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law in partnership with the Federal Highway Administration. “This pilot project represents a major milestone in Anchorage’s and DOT&PF’s shared commitment to improving bicycle safety and infrastructure in Anchorage”, said Anchorage Assembly Member Daniel Volland.

A protected bike lane is a bike lane with some vertical element physically separating it from vehicle travel lanes, making the bike lane more visible and thereby improving comfort and safety for cyclists. PBLs are designed to improve safety for cyclists of all ages and abilities and have the added benefit of calming traffic and providing an additional buffer to provide a better experience for pedestrians and people with disabilities.

The pilot study is scheduled to run the month of September with a Day 1 Celebration to take place Saturday September 9th from 10:00am to 11:00am at Russian Jack Springs Parks on Pine Street near the Polar Bear Park Playground. Team members will periodically be in the corridor taking intercept surveys to gather qualitative data for cyclists and pedestrians for future pilot projects around Anchorage.

Pine Street/McCarrey Street between DeBarr Road and Mountain View Drive was chosen as the initial pilot project site for PBLs for a variety of reasons. The pilot corridor features the only buffered bike lane in Anchorage and was selected for the testing of a PBL due to the connections it provides to the larger bicycle network, including the Pine Street side path south of DeBarr Road, Glenn Highway Path, Chester Creek Trail, Ship Creek Trail, and Moose Loop route, among others. Russian Jack Springs Park, which borders the east side of the corridor, is also a destination park, with a popular playground, several recreational fields, and many trails of its own.

The PBLs will provide valuable information and data to guide future consideration for roadway design projects in Anchorage. The goal of the project is to improve safety, reliability, and equitable access for people of all ages and abilities – including pedestrians, bicyclists, and transit riders.

“Protected bike lanes are one of the best ways to make biking safer and a more comfortable transportation option for everyone,” said Anchorage Mayor Dave Bronson. “I look forward to the results of this pilot study and a continued collaboration with DOT&PF to find the best solutions for all-season conditions in Anchorage.”

Bike Anchorage Director Alexa Dobson says, “We are excited the location of the protected bike lane project is part of the Moose Loop Trail and this month from September 23-30 is the Moose Loop Trail Challenge! There will be a lot of people riding in the corridor as part of the challenge and we are eager to hear what everyone thinks about the protected bike lanes.”

The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities oversees 237 airports, 9 ferries serving 35 communities along 3,500 marine miles, over 5,600 miles of highway and 839 public facilities throughout the state of Alaska. The mission of the department is to “Keep Alaska Moving through service and infrastructure.”

image partner logos: Traffic Engineering, DOT&PF, FHWA

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