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Share the Road Responsibly

Share the Road

A Share the Road campaign in University City--aimed at educating bicyclists and motorists about their responsibilities to abide by the rules of the road--was set in motion Friday morning. In an effort to increase safety for both bicyclists and pedestrians, members of the University City community are joining with the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission (DVRPC) to encourage safe riding and driving.

The DVRPC initiated the campaign in cooperation with the Penn Police, Drexel's Public Safety, HUP, the UCD, PennDOT, the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia, and Neighborhood Bike Works.

Over the next several months, Penn Police will make "educational stops," handing out Share the Road leaflets to bicyclists riding on the sidewalks, and to motorists encroaching on bicycle lanes. Beginning in the spring, police will enforce violations by issuing citations to both bicyclists riding on sidewalks, and to motorists ignoring bicyclists' rights.

University City is one of four areas in the region chosen to participate in a Share the Road campaign which is funded by PennDOT and the Federal Highway Administration.

The leaflets which will be handed out provide the following pointers for bicyclists: stay off the sidewalks; ride on the right; be aware and be visible; obey all traffic signs and signals; always wear a helmet; beware of the "door zone." For motorists: be aware; pass with care; yield to bicyclists; don't honk your horn at bicyclists; don't drive in a bike lane; look in your rear view mirror before opening your car door. For more information and links on sharing the road, see or

What does it mean to "Share the Road?"

  • By law, bicyclists may use the road in the same ways as motorists.
  • Bicyclists may "take the lane" when traveling as fast as traffic.
  • It is illegal to bike on sidewalks in Philadelphia if you're older than 12.
  • It is illegal to drive or park in a bike lane.
  • The same right of way rules apply to cars and bikes.
  • Bicyclists must have a working headlight and rear reflector when riding at night.
  • Wearing a helmet can save your life.
  • Knowing that a car door opening unexpectedly into the path of a bicyclist can be deadly.
  • Knowing that sidewalk riding and wrong-way riding are among the leading causes of car-bike crashes.
  • With the right skills and knowledge, riding in the street can be faster and safer than riding on the sidewalk. And it's easier than you may think.


  Almanac, Vol. 49, No. 18, January 21, 2003