Advocates in the small town of Woolwich, Maine worked with residents, neighbors and advocates in neighboring communities, town officials, and the MaineDOT to put Route 1 on a road diet. A road diet reduces the width or number of travel lanes for cars, and thus creates space next to the curb for facilities such as shoulders or bike lanes. A road diet can be a very low cost improvement that improves safety for all users – drivers, bicyclists, and pedestrians alike.
After months of meetings, gathering input, measuring traffic speeds and movements, and weighing options, everyone was able to agree on a new striping plan for the stretch of Route 1 between the Sagadahoc Bridge and Taste of Maine. The new striping pattern on this section has narrowed travel lanes for cars and created more space in the shoulders for bicyclists.
The local bike/ped champions we work with in Woolwich and Bath are reporting that the new Route 1 is bringing great results.
“Yesterday I rode my bicycle across the Sagadahoc bridge going North, and for the first time in 19 years that I have lived in Maine, I felt confident that I could ride through the commercial section without being squeezed into the granite curb on the right.” Said local bicycle commuter Mark Wheeler. “My thanks to…the Maine DOT for listening to the concerns of the citizens and implementing changes that will contribute to the safety of all folks passing through and using the businesses in this area.”
Congratulations to the advocates in Woolwich and Bath whose dogged advocacy turned a challenge into an opportunity – Mark Wheeler, Ben Tipton, Robert McChesney, and many more. We are proud to have been able to help with this effort!