New street markings make Bellingham a safer place to bike

Learn about the new green paint on our city streets

September 29, 2015 - by Kim Brown

​We’re painting the town green! Bellingham is becoming a safer place to travel by bike as Public Works installs new street markings throughout the city. The markings, which include bike boxes and green pavement, are intended to make the road easier and safer for people bicycling, driving, and walking by increasing awareness of the presence of bicycles and making their moves more predictable.

The new bike boxes and symbols are located on key intersections, such as Cornwall and Ohio. On October 25, the City is hosting a tour of the new markings, where the public can learn how to use bike boulevards and bike lanes to navigate city streets. The tour begins at 1 p.m. at Bellingham High School. For more detailed information on bike routes, see the City of Bellingham’s
bike map and the
Bicycle Master Plan.

Help build a more bikable Bellingham by learning what the new symbols mean.

Bike boxes are green L-shaped boxes at intersections with a white bike symbol inside. They create a designated area for cyclists to wait ahead of traffic at a red light. This makes bicyclists more visible and predictable helping to avoid possible collisions with drivers.

Green pavement marks where bicyclists and motorists frequently cross paths, alerting everyone on the road to pay extra attention to what’s around them.

Bike detectors in the pavement, marked by a white bike symbol, sense when a bicyclist is waiting for the light to turn green. When a bicycle stops on the symbol, it triggers the traffic signal to change.

Shared lane markings, or “sharrows,” mark the safest route for bicyclists and alert motorists to share the lane with bikes on the road.

Even where bike markings aren’t present, always remember to follow the rules of the road, ride predictably, and use lights at night.  Whether driving, bicycling or walking, we can all be safer by obeying traffic laws and treating each other with courtesy and respect. Still have questions about the new paint? Contact Transportation Options Coordinator Kim Brown at 360.778.7950 or

Media Contact

Kim Brown
Transportation Options Coordinator
Public Works

More City News >>

Subscribe to City News