Dear Hillsborough County Public Works Director John Lyons,
Thank you for listening to my concerns today regarding the bike lane on eastbound Fletcher Avenue as it approaches 56th Street.
Generally speaking, the county has done a nice job with the bike lanes on resurfaced Fletcher Avenue. But I ride my bicycle on Fletcher Avenue all the time and it came to my attention recently that the county failed during its resurfacing to properly stripe a bicycle lane straight through the 56th Street intersection as bicyclists travel east on Fletcher Avenue. I have attached photos.
With Fletcher Avenue being resurfaced, this was the ideal opportunity to stripe a bike lane through the intersection. Instead, the resurfacing project's bike lane leads bicyclists to the right of the right-turn lane and then expect bicyclists to cross the right-turn lane to continue traveling east on Fletcher Avenue through the intersection. That is a potentially dangerous situation for bicyclists and counter to the standard of striping bike lanes straight through intersections. Personally, I travel on my bicycle straight through at that intersection and ignore the bike lane as it veers to the right of the right-turn lane.
This is especially disappointing when you consider that a workshop consultant for the county's bicycle safety action plan being crafted specifically showed two before-and-after photos of an intersection without a through bike lane and then the same improved intersection with the through bike lane -- which is the proper design. That could and should have been done on eastbound Fletcher at 56th Street.
I hope Hillsborough County can fix the bicycle lane design on Fletcher Avenue at 56th Street so the bike lane runs through the intersection instead of to the right of the right-turn lane.
Thank you for your help and I appreciate your time and efforts regarding this bicycle safety matter.
Director of SWFBUD -- South West Florida Bicycle United Dealers
Stakeholder in Bicycle Safety Action Plan
Here is the story in photos:
As I approach 56th Street, I'm looking for the bike lane to head straight through the intersection.
But the bike lane is veering to the right -- to the right of the right-turn lane.
The standard is for bike lanes to continue through an intersection -- but not this one.
If you follow the bike lane and want to continue through the intersection, you have to bike across the right-tirn lane to get back on track, Potentially dangerous.