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Posted on: March 22, 2021

Safe Streets Pilot Initiative to Resume on Belmont Bridge

2020 Safe Streets Pilot showing barrels on Belmont Bridge

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 22, 2021

Shared space for bicyclists and pedestrians to return to Belmont Bridge on March 23, 2021.


CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA - The City of Charlottesville will continue its pilot utilizing 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 restart on Tuesday, March 23, 2021, with the placement of traffic barrels to keep vehicles off the shared use area on the Belmont Bridge. The safety measures will be in place until the Coronavirus state of emergency is lifted, or until the construction of the replacement bridge commences.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, 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.

2020 Safe Streets Pilot showing barrels on Belmont Bridge

Implementation details

  • 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 bikeped@charlottesville.gov.

PHOTO: Below, illustration of implementation plan first started in September 2020.

20200930-9th Street SE Bike_Ped Lane Closure Rev 1

Media Contact
Amanda Poncy
Bicycle and Pedestrian Coordinator
City of Charlottesville
434-970-3720
poncy@charlottesville.gov

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