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BeltLine Eastside Trail: improving access for bicyclists
Like everyone, we're thrilled to have the BeltLine Eastside Trail, opened just a few weeks ago and already a huge success! But like many cyclists, we're concerned about access to and from the BeltLine at Monroe and Irwin. We've reached out to the planners and are getting good responses on what safety fixes are planned for these intersections. [Update: visit beltline.org for info on the fixes being planned.] Read more for a summary of what we've learned.
ABC has participated in several meetings with BeltLine staff to discuss how cyclists access the BeltLine. Among other things, we asked for wide curb cuts and ramps in order to ensure bike riders have a smooth entry onto the BeltLine, without having to stop in traffic to hop a curb. We're especially excited about plans for access to Ponce de Leon and the Ponce City Market development.
Monroe at 10th and BeltLine Eastside Trail
An extra-large crosswalk for pedestrians is being installed this week where the BeltLine intersects with Monroe. The traffic signal timing is being adjusted so that drivers turning left from 10th Street onto Monroe will be delayed a little longer in order to give people time to cross Monroe.
We're waiting to hear back on any bicycle-specific access improvements.
Irwin at BeltLine Eastside Trail
The BeltLine asked the contractors to fill the several inch gap between the trail and Irwin - underway now (10/31/12).
We've also asked that the railroad tracks to be paved over, and signs including a pedestrian crossing paddle and more permanent signs be installed, directing drivers and people on foot/bike to stop/yield, to make the intersection more predictable (and therefore safer) for everyone.
Ponce City Market access
The former Sears Building is being redeveloped by Jamestown Properties into Ponce City Market. There will be a spur to the Eastside Trail into the building, with amenities for cyclists that may include a bike valet, showers, bike shop, and more. In addition, the city with support from Ponce City Market recieved a LCI grant from the Atlanta Regional Commission to install buffered bike lanes on Ponce de Leon from Freedom Parkway to Monroe.
Plans for bicycle infrastructure on 10th Street
Stakeholders are considering bike facilities on 10th. Stay tuned!
Due to the popularity of the trail, it's important that we all keep in mind other trail users and exercise caution in order to prevent crashes and enhance everyone's experience. A few tips:
1. Stay right except to pass, leaving enough room for people coming in the opposite direction.
2. Say "excuse me" or "on your left" or ring your bell politely if you have one when passing from behind.
3. Ride at a moderate speed. This is not the place to get in that training ride.
4. Watch out for extendable dog leashes that could get caught in your wheels
5. Use caution if going "off-road" - your wheels could get stuck in the mud.
6. Trail users must stop at all road crossings.
For more information please visit BeltLine.org.