The city of Brentwood held a public open house Thursday for citizens to learn more and voice their thoughts about three possible options for adding bike lanes along both sides of Granny White pike.
Later this year, the Brentwood Public Works Department will pave the road. As part of this project, the city will take the opportunity to explore adding bike lanes along Granny White Pike between Foxland Drive and Brentwood Academy.
In the fall of 2019, the city authorized an agreement with engineering firm Kimberly Horn to explore the feasibility of implementing on-street bike lanes from Powell Park to Granny White Park. Over the past few months, engineers have evaluated traffic and recently presented their findings to the city.
The firm is proposing three options, all of which would be accomplished by adjusting the lane striping within the existing curbs and no new construction.
The bike lane options under consideration are as follows:
Option 1 – Provides for 4-foot bike lanes with a 3-foot striped buffer area between the bike lane and the vehicle travel lane. Vehicle travel lanes would be 11 feet wide. This option would eliminate the center turn lane along most of the corridor, but left turn lanes would still be maintained at all intersections. At intersections where turn lanes are provided, the buffer area would be eliminated, and the bike lanes would be reduced to 3 feet in width.
Option 2 – Provides for 3-foot bike lanes with no buffer area between the bike lane and the vehicle travel lane. This option would keep the center turn lane and intersection turn lane but reduce the vehicle travel lane widths to 10 feet.
Option 3 – The third option would be to keep the road striping the same as it is today, with no bike lanes added.
What do citizens say?
For Friederike Statum, a 35-year Brentwood resident, the second option is intriguing
“For me, option two sounds reasonable, if it can be done safely for bikers,” he said. “I drive Granny White Pike everyday. We need the turning lanes, otherwise it would be a bottleneck to have no turning lanes.”
Bike Walk Brentwood Chairman Richard Hunter said the group supports option one, citing the most safety offered to cyclists with a buffer.
“The fact that you’re connecting two parks, connecting two schools, multiple neighborhoods to schools, you’re going to have a lot of school children cycling to school more and more,” he said. “Having the buffered bike lanes is key.”
Without a buffered bike lane, Hunter fears less-experienced cyclists will use it, which goes against the group’s mission.
“We want ridership, and we primarily want safety,” he said. “We see the vision of connecting this city with bike lanes, bike paths and safe places to walk.”