DelDOT holds public workshop on Delaware's first separated bikeway
A separated bikeway is coming to Newark in the next few years.
DelDOT is holding the first public workshop about the project Monday at the Newark Free Library from 4 to 7 p.m.
The bikeway, which will will physically separate bicyclists from traffic and sidewalks, will run roughly a mile and a half along Delaware Avenue in Newark.
According to DelDOT, the avenue is located along a 15-mile regional bicycle route.
The planned project will go online in summer 2022 at the earliest.
It’ll have two lanes to accommodate both east- and west-bound bikers.
Tom Brooks, project manager for the planned bikeway at DelDOT, says the project will be a safety improvement for bicyclists.
“Right now they are considered a vehicle where they’re riding in the lane or in the minimal shoulder that’s there now,” he said. “And then if you go out there and watch you can see them riding on the sidewalk, which is illegal.”
Brooks says the separated bikeway will be unique in Delaware.
“It is common in like Minneapolis, Portland, Seattle, cities like that that are ped[estrian]-driven,” he said. “[In] Delaware, this is one of the highest locations of cyclists in the state, so this will be a first.”
A 2015 feasibility study found that at least 1200 bike trips were made in the area over the span of a week.
Brooks says this bike traffic is mostly associated with the University of Delaware. DelDOT has been working with the University along with the City of Newark on the project.
Brooks says the project is in the design phase, and DelDOT is beginning to gather public input.
He says a budget estimate will likely be available in January.
Construction will start no sooner than 2021, after planned construction on Main Street is finished.