Skip to Content
Streetsblog USA home
Streetsblog USA home
Log In
Around the Block

Indianapolis Upgrades Painted Bike Lanes By Adding Proper Protection

This used to be an un-protected, painted bike lane. Photo:

Sometimes, when a city builds a really good bike lane -- especially an American city -- you have to sit back and appreciate it.

Case in point: these new curb-protected bike lanes under construction on East New York and East Michigan streets in Indianapolis.

Back in 2015, Joe Smoker at Urban Indy reported on the city's steady progress building out what had been a threadbare bike network 10 years ago. These protected bike lane projects on East New York and East Michigan represent an upgrade for two unprotected, painted bike lanes, he explained. They are two-way bikeways on one-way streets for motor vehicles, with concrete islands where people can wait for the bus.

Kevin Kastner at Urban Indy shares these pictures of the projects under construction. He notes that the city repurposed parking spaces to make room for the bike lanes, and that side streets can absorb any parking demand.

In the Indianapolis context, Kastner thinks protected bike lanes might get a smoother reception than painted bike lanes:

I’ve recently wondered if part of the controversy behind painted bike lanes is that drivers can easily see where they used to be able to drive. That’s not a problem when the lanes are separated by concrete and grass medians. If the street undergoes some fundamental transformations, it’s less obvious that this used to be a speed track.

Here's another look:

How hard is that? Not hard. Photo: Austin Gribble, Urban Indy
Instead of parking, this street space will be used for biking and waiting for the bus. Was that so hard? Photo: Austin Gribble/Urban Indy
How hard is that? Not hard. Photo: Austin Gribble, Urban Indy

More recommended reading today: Bike Portland reports that the city won't back down from its goal of 25 percent bicycle mode share by 2035. And Urban Milwaukee lists nine ways Wisconsin tried and failed to raise more revenue for transportation, all while plowing ahead with a very expensive set of highway expansions.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog USA

What to Say When Someone Claims ‘No One Bikes or Walks in Bad Weather’

Yes, sustainable modes are more vulnerable to bad weather. But that's why we should invest more in them — not less.

April 17, 2024

Car Crashes by City Workers Cost NYC Taxpayers $180M in Payouts Last Year: Report

A record number of victims of crashes involving city employees in city-owned cars filed claims in fiscal year 2023 — and settlements with victims have jumped 23 percent, a new report shows.

April 16, 2024

Tuesday’s Headlines Are Driving Inflation

Driving — specifically, the cost of car ownership — is one of the main factors behind inflation, according to the Eno Center for Transportation.

April 16, 2024

SEE IT: How Much (Or How Little) Driving is Going on in America’s Top Metros

Check it out: The lowest-mileage region isn't the one you'd think.

April 16, 2024
See all posts