The roads of Bellingham are starting to live up to the community's "green" reputation--quite literally. New students settling into Bellingham may encounter these lime-colored traffic marks as they explore outside the bounds of campus. They are called “bike boxes” and are designed to make traveling safer for bicyclists and motorists. The boxes have been implemented in different cities throughout the U.S, but the three installed this summer are a first for Bellingham on Ohio and Cornwall Streets. What are bike boxes? The L-shaped bike boxes function as bicycle-friendly zones at stoplights, providing a place for bicyclists to move to the front of traffic while they wait for a green light. As the light turns red, cars must come to a stop behind the white line outlining the green bike zone. Bicyclists are able to use the bike lane and move to the front of traffic in order to stop in the bike box.
- Drivers: STOP and WAIT
- Must always stop behind the bike box.
- Cannot make a right turn on red. Cars behind the bike box must wait for the light to change and then check for bicyclists before proceeding.
- Bicyclists: MOVE TO FRONT, WAIT IN THE GREEN, POSITION BIKE
- Enter the front bike box by bypassing cars using the bike lane.
- Come to a stop before the crosswalk and wait in the green zone.
- Move to a position in the box based on the direction of travel. If making a left turn, move to the top left corner of the box. If planning to travel straight, stay in the center. If turning right, stay right and wait for the light change.
- [ Suggested: Use hand signals to indicate where you will turn]