Bike

Colorado Safety Stopgraphic with a stop sign equaling a yield and red light equaling a stop sign.

In April 2022, Governor Polis signed the Colorado Safety Stop into law.  The Safety Stop gives people on bikes and other “low speed conveyances” the legal option to ride slowly through stop signs without stopping first, as long as they are yielding right of way to pedestrians and other road users who have the right-of-way. Bicyclists and users of low-speed conveyances may also proceed at red lights after coming to a complete stop, if there is no oncoming traffic. Bicyclists and low-speed conveyance users can approach intersections at a reasonable speed and choose to apply the Safety Stop or continue to perform a traditional stop at both stop signs and red lights. Only bicyclists ages 15 and over may perform the Safety Stop. Younger riders may do so when they are with a parent or legal guardian. 

To learn more about the Colorado Safety Stop, visit CDOT's Safety Stop Pamphlet

  1. Bike Safety and Laws
  2. Bike Maintenance
  3. Bike Benefits
  4. Bike Parking

Commuting by Bike
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Sharing the Road

One of the most common reasons people do not commute by bike is the perceived danger and fear of riding in traffic. By following the suggestions below, you will minimize your risks and learn that it is not as hard or scary as it seems.

  • Ride on the right with the flow of traffic. Never ride against traffic on the road, in a bike lane, or on a sidewalk. You do not have to hug the curb or the edge of the road, but leave enough room for motorists to get around you safely.
  • Use hand signals to show your intentions and ride in a predictable fashion. Hand signals tell motorists what you intend to do. Signal as a matter of law, courtesy and self-protection.
  • Obey traffic laws. Bicyclists are considered vehicles on the road. 
  • Take the lane when appropriate. A bicyclist may ride in the lane if the lane is not wide enough for both a car and bike to safely share, moving at the same speed of traffic, preparing for a left turn or taking reasonably necessary precautions to avoid hazards or road conditions.
  • Be a defensive bike 'driver.' Be alert and aware of your surroundings. Make eye contact with drivers and be sure to get their attention. Be prepared to react.
  • Ride single file. Play it safe by providing more room for other bicyclists and motorist to pass within the three-foot clearance rule. You can ride two abreast if you are not impeding the normal flow of traffic, or if you are on a road or trail exclusive to bicycles.
  • Ride in a straight line. Be predictable and consistent. Do not weave in and out of parked cars. If possible, ride about a car door's width from parked cars.
  • Choose the best way to turn left. Like a motorist: Look over your shoulder, signal and move into the left lane. Like a pedestrian: Go to the far side of the intersection and use the crosswalk.
  • Avoid or go slow on sidewalks. You are allowed to ride your bike on a sidewalk UNLESS it is prohibited. Please note that it is prohibited to ride your bike on the sidewalk in Durango's Downtown Business District.

Navigating the Green Bike Features in Durango

The Colorado Department of Transportation, in coordination with the City of Durango's Multimodal Division, has incorporated new safety features for cyclists as part of its US 160/US 550 Continuous Flow Intersection project (which includes many cycling, pedestrian and vehicle safety features through 9th Street).

Colored Bike Lane

Motorists are expected to yield right of way to bicyclists at these locations. The dashed colored bike lanes are placed at areas of potential conflict, such as the start of right-turn lanes, right turns at signalized intersections from a through lane, and where right turns cross a bike lane. Motorists and cyclists should travel with added caution through the dashed areas.

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Bike Box

A bike box is a designated area at the head of a traffic lane at a signalized intersection that provides bicyclists with a safe and visible way to get ahead of queuing traffic during the red signal phase. Bicyclists will have better left-turn positioning at intersections during the red signal phase and within the box, bicyclists are grouped together so they can clear an intersection quickly, minimizing the impediment to motorized traffic. As shown, motorists are instructed to WAIT HERE in advance of the bike box.

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2-Stage Bike Box

Two-stage turn queue boxes offer bicyclists a safe way make left turns at multi-lane signalized intersections from a right side bike lane. The two-stage boxes also improve safety by separating turning bicyclists from through bicyclists (note the box is positioned adjacent to the through bike lane).

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Signal Detection

Both types of Bike Boxes have multi-radar cyclist detection that turns the signal green for cyclists regardless of waiting motorized traffic. The same traffic detector is also used to turn the light green for motorists waiting in their respective lanes.

Sharing the Path

Off-road riding is often done on a shared-use path. Shared-use paths are used by bicyclists of all ages, abilities, walkers, strollers, joggers, runners, rollerbladers and for organized events. Even though shared-use paths tend to feel safe, because they are off-road and wider, many incidents may occur due to the crowding and users travelling at different speeds. While riding on an off-road trail here are some basic rules to follow:

  • river-trail-19.jpgObey the 10 mph speed limit.
  • Stay to the right except when passing.
  • Travel at a reasonable speed in a consistent and predictable manner.
  • Always look ahead and behind before passing.
  • Pass slower traffic on the left; yield to oncoming traffic when passing.
  • Give a clear warning signal before passing (ring a bell and say "on your left").
  • Move off the trail when stopped to allow others room to pass.
  • When riding on trails at dusk and dawn, use a strong white headlight and a red taillight, or red rear reflectors.
  • Yield to other users when entering and crossing the trail.
  • Stop for traffic where the trail crosses a roadway.

Online Resources

For more information, please email Multimodal Transit or call (970) 375-4955.