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DDOT Releases Proposed Rules Requiring Safe Routes for Pedestrians and Bicyclists near Work Zones

Monday, August 18, 2014

DDOT Releases Proposed Rules Requiring Safe Routes for Pedestrians and Bicyclists near Work Zones

Media Contact: Reggie Sanders (202) 437-0809, reggie.sanders@dc.gov

(Washington, DC) – The District Department of Transportation (DDOT) announced the publication of proposed rules that require entities that operate construction sites that block a sidewalk or bicycle lane to provide safe routes for pedestrians and bicyclists through or around work zones.

These proposed rules, which implement provisions of the Bicycle Safety Amendment Act of 2013, state that these safe routes must be equal to the pedestrian or cyclist accommodation that was blocked. For example, if a work zone blocks a protected cycletrack a bike lane that is physically separated from motor vehicle traffic must be provided for cyclists using the affected area. Also, the safe pedestrian or bicycle route must be free of obstructions and surface hazards such as loose gravel or uneven surfaces and must follow the path of the original pedestrian or bicycle route as closely as is practical. 

Additionally, the proposed rules define the term “safe accommodation” and require that signs used to direct pedestrians or bicyclists along a detour route display a message that is specific to bicyclists or pedestrians.  The DDOT Director may revoke a permit if the permittee fails to comply with these rules or the approved traffic management plan issued with their permit.

“I bike to work every day, so I have first-hand experience with the hazards that work zones can sometimes pose for bicyclists” said DDOT Acting Director Matthew Brown. “These proposed rules will make getting around the city safer for everyone, especially pedestrians and bicyclists.”

To view and/or comment on the proposed rules, please visit:
http://www.dcregs.org/Gateway/NoticeHome.aspx?NoticeID=5054202

Written comments submitted to DDOT's Public Space Policy Office are also encouraged. For further questions, please contact Alice Kelly at 202-671-2252.