Charlotte City Officials Consider New Bike Lanes

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Charlotte City Officials Consider New Bike Lanes

North Carolina is the least safest state for cyclists.

(AP Photo/Chuck Burton, file)

Charlotte city leaders are considering the addition of more bike lanes to uptown streets reports WCNC. City leaders hosted five public meetings to discuss the bike lanes on Tuesday, according to the television station.

Although the city is already debuting new bike lanes in the near future, officials are asking if even more should be proposed.

North Carolina is one of the most dangerous states for cyclists, according to the data from the North Carolina Department of Transportation. Drivers are hitting over 840 bikers annually, and the Charlotte Department of Transportation (CDOT) has records of 28 bicycle and car crashes within the last year and a half, according to WCNC.

WCNC reports that the proposed bike lanes will create a safe commute for cyclists to and from uptown.

“This could really change the landscape of how we do transportation in the city,” said Charlotte City Councilman Justin Harlow, according to the television station.

Charlotte is currently in the process of transitioning into a more bike friendly city, with a car-free city center, as recently reported by Next City.

Most bicycle crashes in Charlotte result in evident injuries, with a significant portion leading to disablement and death. The state has a 15 percent fatality rate of all traffic deaths, according to WCNC.

Data from the University of North Carolina Highway Safety Research Center shows severe injury and fatality rates for bike crashes fall around 9 percent for middle aged adults, the largest age demographic in Charlotte. Rates are about half as much for young adults and teens.

Earlier this year, CDOT tested out temporary bike lanes, which they now hope to make permanent.

Brianna is an Emma Bowen Foundation Fellow with Next City for summer 2018. She's a rising senior at Penn State University, majoring in media studies. She intends to graduate in May 2019. 

Tags: bike lanescharlotte

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