Skip to Content
Streetsblog Los Angeles home
Streetsblog Los Angeles home
Log In
DC Streetsblog

Engineering Establishment Poised to Endorse Bike Boxes and Bike Signals

8:10 AM PST on December 23, 2013

Bike boxes and bike traffic signals are becoming increasingly common in American cities. But as of yet, these tools are not fully recognized by one of the country's most important engineering guides.

Bike boxes may soon be officially recognized in engineering guidance. Image: ##http://otrec.us/project/423## Otrec##
false

Bike boxes and bike signals are currently classified as "experimental" in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices -- which stops many local agencies from installing them. But there are new signs that these two treatments are on their way to official acceptance from the engineering establishment.

The MUTCD is developed and revised by an advisory group called the National Committee on Uniform Traffic Control Devises. When that committee meets for its annual meeting in January, one of the recommended updates they'll be considering is elevating bike boxes and bike signals to regular, non-experimental status in the MUTCD.

Ronnie Bell, chair of the Signals Subcommittee, and Bill Schultheiss, of the Bicycle Subcommittee, both confirmed that their groups were forwarding these treatments to the full committee for approval after reviewing the performance data in American cities.

In order to receive "interim non-experimental approval," these recommendations will need to receive two-thirds support from the full NUTCD committee. In addition, the proposed changes must still undergo review by AASHTO and the Institute of Transportation Engineers, followed by a "rule-making period" during which design recommendations are fine-tuned.

MUTCD approval “gives cities interested in these tools permission to use them," said Darren Flusche, policy director at the League of American Bicyclists. “It will help traffic engineers in those cities sleep easier at night knowing that the treatment is officially approved.”

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog Los Angeles

Metro and Caltrans Quietly Canceled 110 Freeway Expansion Project

The 110 Freeway Adams Terminus Improvement Project would have extended a 2000+foot long ramp from below 28th Street to Figueroa Street near USC

February 23, 2024

Solis Motion Demands Community Benefits for Stadium Gondola to Proceed

A motion from Supervisor Solis would require the gondola project commit to many community benefits - from robust, affordable housing to truly committing to using no public funds

February 22, 2024
See all posts