Sharrows Are Coming
Solana Beach’s Highway 101 renovation project will conclude with new symbols on the roadway, called sharrows, to improve safety for both cyclists and motorists sharing the west-most southbound lane through Solana Beach. This will provide continuity with the sharrows which have been placed on Hwy 101 in Encinitas and Leucadia by the City of Encinitas. The sharrows do not indicate a bike lane, but rather are a guide to tell cyclists that this is the safest position for riding, according to California law. It also tells motorists to not be surprised when a cyclist takes that position and to use the lane to the left if they choose to pass the cyclist(s) ahead following the sharrows. It is therefore a two-sided educational tool, for both cyclists and motorists, to clarify the California law which has always been in place for a sub-standard width lane, such as the west-most southbound lane, due to the parking on that side of the street. For more information from the City of Solana Beach on the new sharrows, visit this page. For a discussion of sharrows and bike lanes provided by the San Diego County Bicycle Coalition, see this excellent flyer.
To complement the sharrows, which will be placed on the pavement, roughly in the middle of the lane, there will be a few signs which read “Bicycles May Use Full Lane.” Both of these indicators are somewhat new and have been appearing all over California and San Diego, since they were officially approved in 2005 (sharrows) and 2009 (“may use full lane”). Although the goal is to improve transportation safety, a side benefit is to make traveling by bike and car more enjoyable because everyone will know where cyclists should be riding.