Sharrows for Los Angeles?

By Richard Peace | Friday, July 11, 2008 3.35pm

What’s a sharrow? Simply put they’re arrows in the road that show the recommended position for cyclists – to keep them clear of the curb, (legally) parked cars and passing vehicles. And they could soon be heading for Los Angeles.

Los Angeles City Council President Eric Garcetti has introduced a motion calling for the city to experiment with sharrows on its roads to improve safety for cyclists. To quote from the motion:

"...cyclists wishing to stay out of the way of drivers often ride too close to parked cars and risk being struck by a suddenly opened car door. To avoid this, experienced cyclists ride farther to the left and position themselves closer to the center of narrow lanes." In other words sharrows aim to encourage less experienced or more nervous cyclists to cycle out from the curb / parked cars for safety reasons.

Garcetti is planning two sharrow pilots, one on the heavily trafficked

Vermont Avenue
, the other on
Fountain Avenue
. He has also recently called for bikes to be allowed on local trains during rush hour and suggested to train authorities that they remove some seats to make space for more bikes.

Sharrows can also be seen in Denver, Portland, Paris, New York and San Francisco.

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