Welcome to the Pittsburgh Bike Plan Website
The City of Pittsburgh is thrilled to announce plans for the creation of a new Pittsburgh Bike Plan. Since the completion of the City’s first bike plan in 1999, many of the projects outlined in that plan have been installed, national best practices have changed and biking continues to be an important component in many Pittsburgher’s daily routines. Through the implementation of the new Bike Plan, Pittsburghers of all ages and abilities will have more opportunities to incorporate bike riding into work commutes, recreation activities, family events, daily errand-running, and social events.
But before the Bike Plan can be finished, we need to hear from you!
This plan will identify an ambitious path towards making Pittsburgh a city that fully supports bicycling as an affordable, inviting, and accessible mobility option for Pittsburgh’s diverse residents and visitors.
Since the completion of Pittsburgh’s first and most recent Bike Plan in 1999, Pittsburgh has seen an expansion of the bicycle network, a dramatic increase in bicycle ridership, and the creation of supportive bicycle policies. Additionally, bicycle planning practices have changed dramatically in the intervening years to better accommodate all types of people who would like to ride a bike. Accordingly, the City’s strategy will be to join municipalities across the nation by building a bike network with new tools and designs focused on accommodating anyone who wants to ride a bike: recreational cyclists, people of all ages, those commuting to work or school, running errands, and biking to social activities.
The Pittsburgh Bike Plan will include an interconnected vision for bike infrastructure and trail, supportive policies, new design standards, bike safety education, and other programs that are reflective of the needs and concerns expressed by the public in the Bike Plan’s public process.
Turning bike lanes and trails from visions into realities is a task that requires the efforts of many hardworking people, including the general public. Public input of the Bike Plan is of utmost value to the Department of Mobility and Infrastructure. The Department of Mobility and Infrastructure seeks to repeatedly improve each design by receiving feedback from those who utilize the Bike Plan most—the riders!
For more detailed information on how a bike route idea becomes an actual project on the street, please refer to our Bike Plan Implementation Roadmap(PDF).
The Pittsburgh Bike Plan will set the framework for building a safe, comfortable and convenient bike network for all types of riders and all types of trips.
The Department of Mobility and Infrastructure’s overall goals are woven into the Pittsburgh Bike Plan, and are as follows:
- No one dies or is seriously injured traveling on city streets.
- Every household in Pittsburgh can access fresh fruits and vegetables within 20 minutes travel of home, without the requirement of a private vehicle.
- All trips less than 1 mile are easily and enjoyably achieved by non-vehicle travel.
- Streets and intersections can be intuitively navigated by an adolescent.
- The combined cost of transportation, housing and energy does not exceed 45% of household income for any income group.
Before you grab your helmet and set out for a ride, it is important to familiarize yourself with the Bicycle Laws in your state. People are often confused about the laws are regarding bicycles, but fortunately the rules are fairly simple and logical for everyone on the road!
Seven Important Bicycle Laws:
- Bicyclists are permitted on most roads: According to the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code, bicycles (also referred to as “pedalcycles”) are considered vehicles and thus may be ridden on all roads and highways, with the exception of freeways.
- Bicyclists must follow the rules of the road: All bicycle riders must follow traffic laws parallel to those operating motor vehicles, as Pennsylvania Vehicle Code considers bicycles vehicles.
- Pedestrians first: Pedestrians have the right-of-way on all sidewalks, in crosswalks,and bicycle paths. A bicycle rider must give an audible signal when approaching or passing a pedestrian
- Mindful turns: Pennsylvania law requires motor vehicles turning right to yield to a bicyclist that is proceeding straight along the right edge of the roadway.
- 4-Foot Passing Law: In order to safely pass a bicycle traveling in the same direction as a motor vehicle driver, Pennsylvania law requires motor vehicle drivers to pass (at a careful and reduced speed) on the left side of the pedalcycle, at a distance no less than four feet.
- Moving Slowly: People riding bicycles are permitted to ride at a pace slower than the prevailing speed of traffic, but should only do so by riding in the rightmost lane of traffic or as far right as can be done safely and comfortably.
- Helmet Law: Regardless of age, it is always good practice to wear a helmet. Pennsylvania law requires all cyclists under age 12 to wear an approved bicycle helmet.
For more information on Pittsburgh Bicycle laws, please visit: Title 75 of the PA Code (known as the Pennsylvania Vehicle Code), PennDOT website, and PA Bicycle Driver’s Handbook.
The whole city benefits when an affordable, sustainable, space-efficient transportation option like bicycling becomes safer and more accessible.
- Efficient Use of Space: Cycling can move more people in limited space.
- Air Quality: Pittsburgh has serious air quality challenges that are greatly impacted by our transportation choices. When residents choose bicycling over driving for trips, air pollution lowers.
- Better Roads: The main sources of road damage are caused by the speed and weight of vehicles, so when a person chooses to make a trip by bicycle rather than car, they are saving the city a carload of money.
- Convenient Trips: 40% of trips in the US are less than 1 mile-- a distance that can easily be covered on bike if safe bikeways are provided.
- Overall Health Improvements: Cycling improves mental and physical health, as well as productivity and attentiveness at work.
- Parking Ease: More cycling means a reduced need for parking lots. Fewer parking lots increase the amount of land available for productive uses, generate less congestion, and decrease storm water runoff.
- Affordability: It is important for people to have a variety of low-cost options when it comes to transportation. Bicycling is an affordable solution to rising costs of living.
- Local Economy: Studies from cities across the US prove that transit and cycling infrastructure makes businesses more accessible to wider audiences.
Programming and education are imperative when it comes to effectively utilizing this, or any, new infrastructure development. Below lists the current initiatives lead by the City and our partners:
- City of Pittsburgh: The City of Pittsburgh has partnered with Bike Pittsburgh for over 10 years to develop, print and distribute a citywide bike map that illustrates the best routes to get around the city safely.
- Allegheny County: The Allegheny County Health Department’s Traffic Safety Education Project in Wilkinsburg provides a number of car, elder adult, pedestrian, and bicycle safety services to Allegheny County residents.
- Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT): The State’s department of transportation serves as an important partner through their informative website, print materials (including a driver’s manual), and educational videos for bicyclists and drivers of all ages.
Ride A Bike Website
PA Bicycle Driver’s Manual
Bicycle Safety Videos
- Bike Pittsburgh: BikePGH is a nonprofit (non-governmental) organization founded in 2002, with a mission to make Pittsburgh a safer place to bike and walk through advocacy, education, and community building. This innovative organization is a constant source of high-quality educational materials and in-person classes.
City Cycling Classes
City Cycling Forums & Workshops for Workplaces and Universities
Guide Pittsburgh Bike Map
1-Minute Educational Videos
The above represents a great start, but we need your opinions, thoughts and ideas to bring the project to life. We will continually be working toward the development of more education programs to comprehensively inform the various communities in the city including children, adults, motorists, commuter bicyclists, recreational bicyclists, university students, people of varying cultures, business stakeholders, employers and employees.