This week’s Road Rant report was submitted by a viewer, Ginny, who has concerns about the configuration of bike lanes on Fletcher Avenue, at the Interstate 75 exit ramps in Tampa.
On westbound Fletcher Avenue, the bike lane crosses the bottom of the off-ramp from northbound I-75.
At the same time, traffic exiting the interstate is supposed to merge left. Ahead, the bike lane crosses the southbound I-75 exit ramp.
Meanwhile, drivers that merged left, but wanting to turn right on to Hidden River Parkway, need to merge back to the right, often crossing over the bike lane.
A similar scenario occurs on eastbound Fletcher.
According to Wade Reynolds, a member of Hillsborough Metropolitan Planning Organization’s (MPO) transportation committee, and the Bicycle/Pedestrian Advisory Committee, the Florida Department of Transportation extended the bike lanes to the bypass canal on the east, and to Hidden River on the west, as part of an interstate project. Reynolds says that where the lanes cross the entrances and exits to the interstate, there’s poor visibility for bicyclists.
Safety measures to alert drivers that there is a bike lane crossing, include signage or flashing lights, would be up to FDOT to add, as the area falls under its jurisdiction. FDOT tells News Channel 8 the agency needs to investigate the request further in order to provide a thorough and accurate response, and will respond once all of the information has been gathered.
Regarding future plans for bike lanes in the area, the MPO has plans to add bike lanes all over the City and County. Often these are installed and marked during resurfacing projects. The Transportation Improvement Program, which includes projects from all jurisdictions and FDOT, is available at the following link: