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Bicycle Facilities and the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices

Background

The Federal Highway Administration receives occasional inquiries about what bicycle facilities, signals, and markings are permitted in the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices (MUTCD). The table below lists various bicycle-related signs, markings, signals, and other treatments and identifies their status (e.g., can be implemented, currently experimental) in the 2009 version of the MUTCD.

If you have MUTCD related questions, please contact: Kevin Dunn, MUTCD Team.

Subject to Experimentation Available through
Interim Approval
Interpretations
A green, horizontal  rectangle is shown.  The right-half of the rectangle has a white symbol of a bicycle oriented to bicycles approaching from the right.  The left-half of the rectangle has a white left turn arrow.
Two-Stage Turn Box
A four-lane, one-way roadway is shown in a horizontal rectangle.  The lane at the top of the figure is an exclusive left-turn lane with two left-turn pavement marking arrows.  Two through lanes separated by a broken white line leading to a solid white line are contiguous to the exclusive left-turn lane.  A bicycle lane is shown to the right of the through lanes.  The bicycle lane is marked with a bicycle symbol and a through arrow.  Green is shown as a background in the bicycle lane behind the bicycle symbol and the through arrow.
Green-Colored Pavement
R4-11 is shown as a square white sign with a black border and legend. A black symbol of a bicycle is shown on the top half of the sign above the words "MAY USE FULL LANE" in black on two lines.
Use of R4-11 Sign on Roads with
Speed Limits Above 35mph
A roadway approach to an intersection is shown in a horizontal rectangle.  A white bicycle symbol is shown at the top with a horizontal white stop line below.  A vertical line separating the approach lane from a contiguous bicycle lane is shown from the bottom of the figure to the stop line.  Green is shown in the bicycle lane and also in the area occupied by the white bicycle symbol.
Bicycle Box
The M1-9 sign is shown as a vertical rectangular green sign.  It shows an inverted white shield with a green symbol of a bicycle below the legend " U S".  Below the inverted white shield is the green numeral "2" on a white rectangle.
Alternate Design for the U.S. Bicycle
Route (M1-9) Sign
This figure shows a horizontal rectangle green sign with a white legend and border and three white horizontal dividers.  On the top line is a bicycle symbol.  On the second line is a up through arrow with the legend "Bardstown Rd ½" .  The third line is a left arrow with the legend "Louisville Loop 3".  The bottom line has the legend "Downtown District ½" with a right arrow.
Modified Bicycle Destination Sign
A two-way roadway is shown in a horizontal rectangle.  At the top of the figure, a dashed bicycle lane with a white bicycle symbol is followed by a white through arrow.  At the bottom of the figure is a dashed bicycle lane with a white bicycle symbol followed by a white through arrow.
Dashed Bicycle Lanes
This figure shows a vertical arrangement of signal sections in bicycle signal faces from top to bottom: red bicycle, yellow bicycle, green bicycle.
Bicycle Signal Faces
This figure shows a vertical arrangement of a sign assembly from top to bottom: M4-5, M3-3, M1-8, M5-1.  M4-5 is shown as a horizontal rectangular green sign with a white border and legend. It shows the word "TO".  M3-3 is shown as a horizontal rectangular green sign with a white border and legend. It shows the word "SOUTH" in large and small capital letters.  M1-8 is shown as a vertical rectangular white sign. It shows a green oval with a white symbol of a bicycle above the white numeral "1" on the oval.  M5-1 is shown as a horizontal rectangular green sign with a white border and legend. It is shown with a right-angled arrow pointing up and to the left.
Installation of Advance Turn and
Directional Assemblies for
Bike Route Signs
This figure illustrates two guide signs.  On the left, a modified M1-8a sign is shown with a white border, a pictograph of a river walk, the bicycle symbol, a pedestrian symbol, and the legend North "Bridge to Bay Trail".  On the right,  a modified D1-1 sign is shown with a white border and one white horizontal divider.  Above the divider is a left arrow, the bicycle symbol, a pedestrian symbol, the legend "Riverfront Park 7".  Below the divider is a bicycle symbol, the pedestrian symbol, the legend "High School 10" and a right arrow.
Destination Guide Signs for Shared-Use Paths
  A two-way roadway with a double yellow centerline is shown in a horizontal rectangle.  On the bottom half of the roadway, pavement word markings "BIKE BLVD" are shown followed by a through arrow symbol.
Pavement Markings for
Designated Bicycle Routes
A partial, two-way roadway is shown in a horizontal rectangle.  A double yellow centerline is shown in the top third of the rectangle.  A shared-lane marking is shown in the bottom section of the roadway with a green-colored rectangular background limited to the shared-lane marking.
Green-Colored Pavement for Use with the Shared-Lane Marking
   
Additional Resources

Allowable through the 2009 MUTCD

  • Continuation of Bicycle Lanes up to Intersections
  • Extensions of Bicycle Lanes through Intersections
  • Counter-flow Bicycle Lanes
  • Buffer-Separated Bicycle Lanes
  • Bicycle Lanes on the Left-Hand Side of One-Way Streets
  • Two-Stage Turn Box at Jughandle or T-Intersection
  • Shared-Lane Markings
  • Rotated bicycle symbols in bicycle lanes or separated bikeways at intersections and driveways oriented towards turning or entering motorists

Disallowed

  • Combined bicycle lane/turn lane
  • Green channelizing devices, delineators, posts, or retroreflective elements thereof
  • Yield bar pavement markings without a standard, regulatory yield sign

Other Treatments

  • Separated bikeways
  • Convex mirrors at conflict points to improve visibility
  • Bicycle networks
  • Median or refuge island for bikeway crossings
  • Not a traffic control device, so no MUTCD restriction on its use
Additional Information
Updated: 08/20/2014
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