Chicago Finishes First Protected Bike Lane

The bike lane opened on Kinzie Street between Milwaukee and Wells

The first protected bicycle lane that separates cyclist traffic from vehicle traffic has been completed, Chicago Department of Transportation Commissioner Gabe Klein announced Monday.

The test tracks, which separate cyclist traffic from vehicle traffic, are part of Mayor Rahm Emanuel's effort to make Chicago one of the most bike-friendly cities in the country.

The new bike lane is being tested on a half-mile stretch of Kinzie Street between Milwaukee and Wells, an area that is often traveled by bicyclists. The Kinzie project is estimated to have cost about $140,000.

Typically, cycle tracks are separated from vehicles by planter boxes or construction barriers, however for this pilot project, flexible posts were used instead.

The next phase of protected lanes are expected to be added to Jackson Street between Halsted Street and Damen Avenue.

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