The Littleton Public Works Department has installed "sharrow" pavement markings on several Littleton streets. The name "sharrow" is a combination of "shared lane" and "arrow."
A sharrow consists of a bicycle symbol and two white chevrons above it indicating the cyclist's required direction of travel. Sharrows are painted on streets that are too narrow for a separate bike lane, and where the posted speed limit is 35 mph or less.
Sharrows are meant to remind motorists to share the road with cyclists, and visa-versa. Sharing the road with cyclists means motorists should:
- Drive predictably;
- Follow the rules of the road;
- Watch for cyclists when making lane changes and turns;
- Pass to the left of a cyclist at a safe distance and speed;
- When parking on a street with sharrows, check for cyclists before opening your door into traffic.
Sharing the road with vehicles means bicyclists should:
- Ride your bicycle predictably;
- Ride as far to the right side of the road as is safe;
- Follow the rules of the road, including stopping at all stop signs and traffic signals;
- Use hand signals to alert motorists when making lane changes and turns;
- Ride in the correct direction of travel at all times.
Use of sharrows was proposed in the Littleton Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan, which was adopted by city council in November 2011. The plan proposes more than 37 miles of new and existing bike routes in Littleton. The bike routes will be signed with either a bike lane or sharrows, depending on the width of the lane. Implementation of the plan will be paid with grant money provided through the Communities Putting Prevention to Work from Tri-County Health.