by Thursday, March 31, 2022
The City Needs Your Input on the Middle Street Bike Lanes: Deadline March 31
Last year the previous Portsmouth City Council voted to remove a ⅓ mile stretch of protected bike lane on one side of Middle Street. This involved moving parked cars to the curb and painting over the bike lane markings, resulting in an overly wide outbound driving lane which encourages speeding and provides no separation between bicyclists and cars. Cyclists, pedestrians, residents, and drivers were all negatively affected by this step backwards.
Consultants are now collecting resident input on this layout through an online survey. It asks for your experience using the current bike lanes on Middle Street between Cabot and Lincoln, but this is misleading as for the last 12 months there has been no designated bike lane on the outbound side of the street.
Please let the Portsmouth City Council know this is not an adequate solution to meet the needs and safety of all.
As Toole Design reported in January of 2021, best practices require that a road with such high traffic speeds and volumes have protected bike lanes. We endorse Toole’s recommendations for improvements to the original parking-separated lanes, but if those cannot be implemented in the short term we would like to see at least a painted lane and concrete plans being made for greater improvements down the road.
Paired with future plans for the downtown portions of Middle Street and Maplewood Ave this can form the spine of a robust city-wide bike network.
To be clear, the survey is asking for input on the current layout of the road; if you would like to comment on the 2018-2021 parking protected bike lane, please do so in Question #9.
The deadline for this survey is Thursday, March 31st.
Let your voice be heard!