6 Streets and 5 Intersections in Serious Need of Safer Bike Infrastructure

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Seven people were injured while biking at the intersection of Broadway and 12th Avenue from 2008 to 2012. Image: Google Maps

The City of Denver released reams of information when Mayor Michael Hancock committed to ending traffic fatalities, including some long awaited data on bike safety. Streetsblog is combing through it all — let’s start with the streets and intersections where people on bikes are getting hurt the most.

From 2008 to 2012, there were 1,325 reported bike crashes in Denver [PDF]. That likely undercounts the real total, since only crashes reported to police get entered into the record. While the data is a little behind the times because some of these streets have been redesigned since 2012, most of them remain quite dangerous.

Without further ado, here are Denver’s five worst intersections and six worst streets for bike safety. The key question going forward is what Mayor Michael Hancock, his Department of Public Works, and the Denver Police Department will do to make these places safer for people on bikes.

Colfax and Broadway – 9 Crashes

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Image: Google Maps

Lincoln and Colfax – 8 crashes

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Image: Google Maps

Lipan and Evans – 7 crashes

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Image: Google Maps

12th and Broadway – 7 crashes

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Image: Google Maps

Kalamath and Alameda – 7 crashes

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Image: Google Maps

And now the streets…

12th Avenue: 17 crashes/mile, 24 total

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12th Avenue is technically a bike route, but riders have to get by with nothing but sharrows next to heavy car and bus traffic. Image: Google Maps

15th Street: 15 crashes/mile, 27 total

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More recent data on 15th might paint a different picture, since the street was redesigned with a protected bike lane after the 2008-2012 study period. Image: Google Maps

3. E. 16th Avenue: 14 crashes/mile, 23 total

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Denver Public Works may re-time traffic signals on 16th to prioritize bicycles — as the data comes in, we’ll see if it made the street safer. Image: Google Maps
4. East Colfax Avenue: 10 crashes/mile, 57 total
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Colfax is probably the scariest place to ride a bike, and the number of crashes backs that up. Image: Google Maps

5. Lincoln Street: 10 crashes/mile, 22 total

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One of the many reasons that city planners are working to overhaul the Broadway/Lincoln corridor. Image: Google Maps

6. Broadway 10 crashes/mile, 30 total

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If only there was enough room for a protected bike lane on Broadway that wouldn’t worsen all the terrible congestion. Image: Google Maps
Stay tuned — next week Streetsblog will look at how the city plans to make cycling safer.