A section of North Market Street in Frederick will be getting some new bicyclist-friendly markings in the next few weeks.
The city is doing paving work on North Market from Seventh Street to just past Gov. Thomas Johnson High School, and will add bicycle lanes and other striping when the project is finished, likely in early to mid-October, said Zack Kershner, director of public works for the city.
The changes are in accordance with the city’s Complete Streets policy, and a recommendation from its Bicycle and Pedestrian Advisory Committee, he said.
The Complete Streets policy seeks to make all city streets accessible to pedestrians, bicyclists, people with disabilities, and transit users, as well as motor vehicles.
The project will add a bicycle lane between Seventh and Ninth streets, and add markings to alert drivers that bikes may be using the route between Ninth Street and the high school, Kershner said.
The additional lane markings will link up to where a shared use path will eventually cross North Market Street and run along East Street, creating a bicycle connection for parts of the city, Kershner said.
Alderwoman Kelly Russell said she hopes the changes can be a pilot program for improvements in other parts of the city.
The stretch of North Market being redone used to be a two-lane northbound street, but was changed to one lane after residents complained about speeding and other traffic issues, Russell said. But the way it is currently marked has led to problems such as unsafe passing, speeding and confusion from drivers about where they should be driving.
The city and the committee saw an opportunity to make improvements with the paving project, known as mill and overlay work, Russell said.
The finished work will include green-painted bike lane markings on Market at Seventh and Eighth streets. The intersection of Market and Ninth streets will include a green-painted lane as well as a small “bike box” that will give bicyclists a space to get ahead of traffic so they can turn first.
The work will also involve placing signs along the stretch of road.
Russell, a longtime advocate for bicyclists, said she hopes the idea can be used in other parts of the city.
“This is sort of the next level of infrastructure,” she said.