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Baltimore Officials Continue "Master Plan" To Make Roads Safer For Cyclists

BALTIMORE (WJZ) -- Making the roads safer for cyclists is part of Baltimore's "master plan." Their project to create safer bike lanes on Roland Avenue is nearing completion.

Tracey Leong explains it will benefit more than just bikers.

The goal of these bike lanes is to not only decrease accidents but also to encourage more people to get on their bikes.

The vision for Baltimore to be a more bicycle-friendly city is quickly becoming a reality.

"It's a common refrain among cyclists: they would ride more if they just felt safer," said Joe Traill, who owns Joe's Bike Shop.

Traill says the cycle track being installed on Roland Avenue will make the roadways less dangerous for everyone.

This past December, 41-year-old cyclist Thomas Palermo was hit and killed while riding his bike along Roland Avenue. Ex-Bishop Heather Cook admitted she was driving drunk and texting when she slammed into Palermo.

The city hopes this new cycle track will prevent tragedies like this in the future.

This project will move the five foot bike lane next to the curb, provide a three foot buffer, a seven foot parking lane and then two travel lanes, creating a larger barrier between cyclists and motorists.

"It separates us from cars, which are much larger, moving much faster and gives you a sense of security you don't have when riding in traffic," Traill said.

With this added security measure, Baltimore is able to move toward its goal of creating a more bike-friendly city in the next 15 years.

"We want to create another mode of transportation for folks and give them that option and we want to accommodate them by giving them the proper tools," said Adrienne Barnes, Department of Transportation.

The project should be completed by this fall.

The city is also considering other streets in Baltimore to add cycle tracks. For more information on their "Master Plan," click here.

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