As one of the most dangerous places to bicycle in the United States, we have some good new for bicyclists in north Tampa near University of South Florida.
Fowler Avenue may not seem like a first choice for biking but some recent changes may make it far less challenging. With a repaving project as a catalyst taking a few inches from each of the existing car lanes to create a bike lane on each side of the road along with a visual buffer to separate bicyclists from the traffic. By summer of 2016, the new Fowler Avenue buffered bike lanes will run from Nebraska Avenue to Bruce B Downs Boulevard. It’s part of a pilot project to create a standard type of bike lane the Department of Transportation can put in place on state roads around Florida.
Studies show that buffered or protected bike lanes save lives. Dedicated bike lanes with visual or physical barriers help drivers know where to expect cyclists. There are many other efforts being made to make Tampa more bike friendly. Large east-west corridors such as Fletcher Ave, Busch Blvd, and E Hillsborough Ave, to name a few, have all had bicycle and pedestrian amenities and signaled crosswalks added. But to achieve the goal of offering commuters more transportation choices for bicyclists and pedestrians, we will have to create more safer bike corridors, not just for recreation, but for the many residents who are bike dependent.