Tell SHA to Keep The Protected Bike Lanes on MD-193/University Blvd

Earlier this summer, the Maryland State Highway Administration began a temporary experiment by installing a protected bike lane on MD-193/University Boulevard, between Amherst and Arcola Ave, in Wheaton. But now that the pilot period is over, SHA intends to remove the lanes on November 14, 2021. We need to act now to insist that SHA keep the protected bike lanes in place permanently!

Take Action

From everything that we’ve seen, the changes on University Blvd have been a tremendous success. The lanes have made it more comfortable to bike and walk on this stretch of University Blvd, increasing safe access to transit and slowing traffic to the speed limit without creating congestion. The SHA should make these lanes permanent and extend them further east and west to bring these benefits to a wider set of users.

To show support for this pilot project, the first of its kind on a Maryland State Highway, send a note to the project team, urging MDOT SHA to continue the pilot indefinitely and to extend the protected bike lanes to a longer stretch of University Boulevard. Make a comment on MDOT SHA’s web site for this project by clicking here.  

Here are some helpful points you can make in your own words:

  • I have loved how safe it is to ride my bike along these lanes
  • I am now able to use University Boulevard to safely bike/walk to restaurants, retail shopping, and other amenities in downtown Wheaton
  • Please extend the pilot indefinitely. Do not remove the lanes.
  • Extend the bike lanes permanently eastward past MD-29/Colesville Road
  • I love that there is now a safe connection between the Sligo Creek Trail and downtown Wheaton
  • For the first time, I feel safe walking on the sidewalk along University Boulevard
  • It is much easier now for Northwood High School students to safely bike and walk to school
  • I am more likely to bike/walk to the outdoor dining area in Wheaton
  • It is safer for me to access bus stops along University Boulevard

You can learn more about this project on the SHA project page. Thanks for taking action by writing in support of this vital project!

Map of University Blvd pilot project (image from SHA)

Dedication of Pilot Protected Bike Lanes on MD-193

Come join WABA and Open Streets Montgomery on Saturday June 19, 10:00am, for a dedication of bike lanes on University Boulevard in Wheaton.  Meet at the intersection of Sligo Creek Parkway and University Blvd (map). The celebration of these lanes will include a few speeches and then a group ride on the lanes, ending up at the Wheaton Streatery (map) to share a bite outside.  In case of rain, the dedication will move to June 26.  Check the Open Streets Montgomery website after 8:00am on June 19 for updates on a rain delay.

For the first time ever, Maryland State Highway Administration is placing on-road bike lanes with physical barriers on a State Highway, MD-193, University Boulevard from Arcola Avenue (near Northwood HS) to Amherst Avenue and the Wheaton downtown business district. The bike lanes will run curbside on both sides of the road, repurposing one driving lane in each direction.

This pilot project, funded by a research grant from the Federal Highway Administration, will run 4-6 months beginning in June and will include data collection on use of the on-road bike lanes, car speeds and pedestrian counts on the narrow University Blvd unbuffered sidewalks.
Please demonstrate your support for and use of these lanes by joining us on Saturday June 19, starting at 10:00am.  After a few speeches by advocates, and State/County officials, we will ride the whole 1.3 mile length of the lanes and end up at the downtown Wheaton Streatery at Price Avenue and Elkin Street (map) where we can all get something to eat/drink and sit outside.