Guy Blocks Bike Box, Hits Me Twice: The Case for Green Bike Boxes

The bike box at High and 7th is needed to go from a left-side bike lane to a right-side bike lane. For some reason it’s not painted green like every other bike box, ever. (Like the bike boxes on Willamette and 18th and Alder and 13th.) This causes conflict.  When the bike box went in, I asked why it wasn’t green. The answer I got back (I forget from who) was that they didn’t think it needed to be green, and would be painted green if there were problems.  Well…  And now that we have lots of other green bike boxes in town, this one sends a message that it is somehow different from those.

Car drivers frequently block the box, not knowing or caring what it is. When riders try to get in front, sometimes the car drivers respond with threats and menacing. This was one of those times.

Update: From Eugene Transportation Planning on Facebook: “We do intend to put green paint in this bike box this summer. We will also be putting out some more education and outreach about bike boxes in the near future.” 

Author: C-Gir


4 thoughts on “Guy Blocks Bike Box, Hits Me Twice: The Case for Green Bike Boxes”

  1. He hit you with his car?!?!? I can’t figure out how “right” I would have to feel about something to decide to hit a cyclist with the deadly weapon I was driving.

    I suppose you could make your life worse by trying to press assault charges, but I think I would settle for trying to find his (I’m assuming it’s a “his”, not a “her”) car somewhere and do something mean to it.

    Or at least rest easy in the knowledge that there is a special circle of hell reserved for jerks like this one.

  2. I’m really sorry this happened. It seems that the average person in an automobile is never fully engaged in the task at hand (e.g. navigating their 4k-6k lb machine through the city.) In addition, the human brain has adapted to scan it’s environment quickly, and recognize patterns. This is why newly placed stop signs are often ignored for months by auto drivers. Most of the drivers assume that the landscape is exactly the same as they remember from prior encounters.

    These two issues are why bike lanes, bike boxes, and other bike areas sharing space with automobiles MUST be consistent. The vast majority of auto drivers are not paying attention.

  3. Hate that bike box – that’s why I always try to merge over to the right-most non-turning lane well before it. I really wish Eugene would get rid of the off-side bike lanes – no one ever looks for us over there on the left!

  4. Gotta love an indignant driver who is flat out wrong. That said, I hate that bike box. It’s needed, but I’m afraid to use it when I need it most. Hopefully the green paint will improve its usefulness.

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