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Cycling Time in Colorado

June 21, 2017 - Denver Metro Colorado/CDOT Region 1 - Bike to Work Day Next Week

DENVER – June is Bike Month in Colorado and the highlight is next week’s Bike to Work Day onWednesday, June 28, when Coloradans are encouraged to put their feet to the pedals and leave their motor vehicle at home.   

“We’ve been promoting Bike to Work Day for 26 years and it’s our way of educating the public about the benefits of commuting and traveling on a bike,” said Colorado Department of Transportation (CDOT) Bicycling and Pedestrian Coordinator Betsy Jacobsen.  “Bicycling events really begin ramping up in June and this is just one more way to promote a healthy alternative to driving.”

Cities, counties and other public and private entities also sponsor BTWD activities. 

As one of the top Bicycling Friendly States* in the U.S., CDOT is doing its part to support bicycling for residents and tourists alike.  The Share the Road campaign is aimed at increasing awareness among motorists and bicyclists that all road users have a right and a responsibility to be courteous to one another and act safely, regardless of the mode.  CDOT also administers the Safe Routes to School program. 

As a multi-modal agency, CDOT maintains and continues to fund and add amenities that enhance safety and improves the cycling experience, including:   

Denver/Boulder Area (CDOT Regions One/Four)

  • U.S. 36 Bikeway between Westminster and Boulder (About 140,000 cyclists have traveled the bikeway since its opening in June 2016).
  • Interstate 70 Trail between Genesee and Evergreen Parkway.  This final link allows cyclists to ride from Denver to west of Glenwood Springs without ever traveling on the interstate.
  • Linking Lookout Mountain and Golden to help bicyclists, pedestrians and cars cross over U.S. 6 safely without hindering the flow of traffic. The Linking Lookout project grade separates U.S. 6 and 19th Street and provide a pedestrian plaza and crossing, and a separate biketrail over 6th Avenue.
  • Longmont: State Highway 119/Hover Road underpass (CDOT provided funding).
  • Baseline Road Underpass (Boulder/CDOT provided funding).

Southeast Colorado (Region Two)

  • New paths constructed as part of the new Fillmore Interchange Project to help facilitate bike and pedestrian travel across I-25 in Colorado Springs.
  • New paths constructed or current paths realigned as part of the I-25/Cimarron Street (U.S. 24) Interchange Reconstruction Project.  Provide safer access into and out of downtown Colorado Springs.
  • State Highway 96 - Widened shoulders on the route also known as the TransAmerica Bicycle Trail

Western Colorado (Region Three)

  • Colorado Highway 135 Riverwalk Trail (Gunnison County) - Almost Completed.
  • Mount Crested Butte Gothic Trail - Almost Completed
  • B1/2 Road Overpass and U.S.50 (Grand Junction).
  • Vail Pass Trail between Copper Mountain and Vail.
  • Glenwood Canyon Trail between Dotsero and Glenwood Springs.

Southwestern Colorado (Region Five)

  • U.S. 24 Buena Vista Enhancement Three miles of highway and business district improvement, including addition of bike lanes.
  • State Highway 62 RAMP Up Ridgway– More than one mile of highway improvements in downtown historic business district, providing safer multi-modal experience for cyclists and pedestrians.
  • U.S. 50 Bike Lanes in Salida.
  • U.S. 160/U.S. 550 Continuous Flow Intersection in Durango, including bike lanes, bike boxes (designated area at the head of a traffic lane at a signalized intersection that provides bicyclists with a safe and visible way to get ahead of queuing traffic during the red signal phase), bike signal phases and detections

Bicycling also provides a number of other economic benefits.  In 2016, out-of-state visitors spent $185 million on bicycle activities and equipment, with Colorado households spending an average of $450 per year on bicycle equipment and events.  Overall,the economic and health impacts of biking and walking are nearly $4.8 billion -- through tourism, household spending, retail, manufacturing and health costs.  (Economic and Health Benefits Study, 2016).

Share the Road Tips

For Drivers

  • Give bicyclists at least three feet of space when passing: Even if it requires crossing the center line, if it is safe – or risk a ticket.  
  • Wait a few seconds: If you don’t have three feet to pass then wait until there is enough room to pass safely.
  • Take a brake: Reduce speed when encountering bicyclists.
  • Scan, then turn: Look for bicyclists before making turns and make sure the road is clear before proceeding.
  • Check your door:  Prior to getting out of a vehicle, look before opening your car door to avoid injuring any bicyclist on the road.

For Riders

  • Bicyclists must ride as far right as possible and with the flow of trafficSide-by-Side Rule: Ride no more than two abreast; move to single-file if riding two abreast impedes the flow of motorized traffic.
  • Ride Predictably: Scan the road, anticipate hazards, and communicate your moves to others.
  • Signal First: Use hand signals to alert nearby vehicles to turns or lane changes; and always call your pass when going around other bicyclists or pedestrians.

For more information on bicycling in Colorado, including on-line maps, please visit: https://www.codot.gov/programs/programs/bikeped or http://bicyclecolorado.org/

*According to The League of American Bicyclists

Colorado: The Official State Web Portal