FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 29, 2020
Shared space for bicyclists and pedestrians to be piloted for at least one week
CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - The City of Charlottesville will pilot the utilization of the existing bicycle lane on the Belmont Bridge as a shared space for both bicycles and pedestrians to facilitate improved physical distancing during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The pilot will begin on Wednesday, September 30, 2020, with the placement of traffic barrels to keep vehicles off the shared use area on the Belmont Bridge. While there is no definitive end date for the pilot, the safety measures will be in place for at least one week while City staff collect public feedback.
With the onset of COVID-19, many communities are taking advantage of the reduced traffic volumes in order to reallocate the roadways to give citizens more space to walk, bike and exercise while still maintaining recommended physical distancing guidelines.
The Belmont Bridge has a sidewalk only on one side of the road. People walking on the bridge are not able to pass each other safely without stepping off a high curb into the roadway. Due to the vertical curve of the bridge, it is difficult to see oncoming traffic. People walking on the bridge will be able to use this additional space for walking and those biking will have additional separation from vehicle traffic.
- Southbound bicycles are only permitted on the asphalt section of the path.
- Northbound bicycles shall use the northbound vehicular travel lane.
- The additional space in the roadway is being provided so pedestrians can safely pass with 6 feet of distance, bicycles shall yield to pedestrians on the path.
- When passing others, please pass on the left and give an audible signal.
- The ADA accessible route will be maintained along the existing sidewalk.
Feedback on the pilot can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org.
PHOTO: Above, view of the Belmont Bridge Pilot Project in September 2019. Below, illustration of implementation plan for September-October 2020.
Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator
City of Charlottesville