Accommodating bicycle and pedestrian travel
This improves the safety for those users by helping provide separation between the fast moving motorized traffic and the slower bikes and pedestrians.Faster confident bicyclists may tend to travel in the main lanes, but this is not true for younger or less confident bike riders.In the Spring 2013 issue of Nuggets & Nibbles, we reproduced a historic article - Highway Shoulder Design, Construction and Maintenance.One area not discussed was how bicycles and pedestrians interact with the shoulder of the road, especially in the many rural areas around the state.A chip sealed surface with a relatively thin gravel base may be adequate for many pedestrian and bicycle applications.The structural strength provided in the base should be adequate for the anticipated traffic.Whether or not such a visual appearance will actually slow traffic any more than the design treatments will is questionable.Treatments that bring the possible presence of cyclists and pedestrians along a roadway to drivers’ attention is a safety enhancement.
In some situations, lack of space or certain soil conditions do not allow for a road shoulder.
With the increased attention being paid to providing access for pedestrians and bicyclists on our roadways, when and how to safely accommodate their needs is not always easy to determine. When feasible, road shoulders provide the space for motorists and cyclists to share the road Road shoulders are often a preferred treatment to accommodate bicyclists and pedestrians on rural roads.