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Bicycle commuting -- United States, Urban transportation -- United States, Cycling -- Route choice, Traffic signs and signals -- Control systems


The Manual of Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD) includes a bicycle detector pavement marking (Section 9C-05) and accompanying explanatory sign (R10-22) which may encourage cyclists to position themselves over detection at traffic signals. This paper presents the results of an observational and survey- based study evaluating the bicycle detector marking. Three minor actuated approaches at signalized intersections with significant bicycle volumes and without bicycle detector markings were selected for treatment. Three configurations were compared: 1) bicycle detector marking only 2) bicycle detector marking with the R10-22 explanatory sign, and 3) an alternative bicycle detector installed over a contrasting green rectangle. Analysis of 688 observations, gleaned from over 300 hours of before and after video data, indicate that while all three marking options influence cyclist stopping position, the effect of the marking is not substantial. For the marking only, 23.5% of cyclists waited over the space where the marking was installed. This improves to 34.8% with the addition of the explanatory sign and 48.4% when the marking is applied over the green rectangle. Analysis of survey responses of 227 cyclists indicates that only 45.4% of cyclists understand the roadway marking is meant to show where they should wait to be detected. An additional 11.5% understand that the marking indicates the recommended waiting location, but do not know that it is for the purpose of detection. Finally, survey respondents expressed concern about waiting in the travel lane and preference to wait closer to the curb (a position which usually prevents them from being detected).


This is the author's version of the article. Submitted for presentation and publication to the 94th Annual Meeting of the Transportation Research Board January 11-15, 2015

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