Bike Infrastructure in Decatur, and a Survey

This is our last post from Margaret Beltrami. Please take a few minutes to answer the survey at the end of this post.

We made it through National Bike Month! I hope everyone was able to get some bike rides in and of course being safe while doing so. Today for the last post, we will be looking at city infrastructure. Also, don’t miss the end of this post where I will be highlighting the next steps for my Gold Award project and I will be including an anonymous survey for you to complete if you would like to. 

Today’s post will be about city infrastructure. What this means is that I will be highlighting common lane configurations and street markings that riders often see as they bike on roads and in the city, so you know what they are and what they mean. 

Bike Lanes

Bike lanes are lanes on the road that are only for cyclists to use. This helps bikers be able to ride without interference with other cars. Bike lanes do not have physical boundaries, but are instead marked on the pavement by white lines. They usually have a white bike symbol and/or have “bike lane” written in white paint also. The image below shows an example of what a bike lane could look like on the road. The bicycle symbol would be in white paint.


Sharrows are not bike lanes, but they do help bikers and cars share the road. Essentially, if there is not space for cars and cyclists to each have their own lane, sharrows are used. Additionally, they help to alert drivers that there could be bikers around them. Sharrows are marked on the street with a white bicycle symbol with two upward pointing arrows above it. The image below shows an example of what sharrows might look like on the road. The bicycle symbol would be in white paint.  

Bike Boxes

Bike boxes are green pavement markings located at intersections to reduce accidents and to help cyclists have a safe way to move through the intersection. They also include green bike lanes leading to and from the intersection. They are currently not implemented in many cities, but they are used here in Decatur! The image below shows an example of what bike boxes could look like, and the bicycle symbol would be in white paint. It also should be noted that bike boxes sometimes look different, especially considering multiple lanes. 

Cycle Track

Cycle tracks are areas for cyclists that are only for bikers and are physically separated from the rest of the road by some kind of barrier. For example, this could include concrete walls, a greenspace, or durable medians. The image below shows an example of what a cycle track could look like, and the bicycle symbol would be in white paint. Other cycle tracks could include plants, trees, or a larger barrier.

And that is all for today’s post as well as all of my posts for National Bike Month. As I mentioned in my very first blog post, I am working towards my Gold Award, and my project is about bike helmet safety. I wanted to add what my next steps to my project are so that you can keep an eye out for what I am planning. 

In the future I plan to write information for the City of Decatur’s website about bike helmet safety. I also plan to create permanent signs on some of Decatur’s paths to help remind people about wearing helmets. Lastly, I plan on hosting a bike helmet drive, where the helmets will go to Decatur residents who may not bea ble to afford on.. 

Finally, if you would take this quick, anonymous survey about the blog posts I have made throughout the month of May, that would really help me out! Even if you have only read one out of the five posts I made, if you would still complete it, that would be fantastic and will help me to measure the impact of my project! 

Here is the link:

Bike Rides This Week

Join Decatur Active Living staff for the Senior Bike Ride this Friday, May 28 at 10 am. Meet in front of the
Decatur Recreation Center for this slow-paced ride through Decatur neighborhoods.

On Saturday we will ride through Decatur with stops at some of the public art that has been installed in the city.
.Meet in front of the Decatur Recreation Center at 10 am. This ride is approximately 6 miles.

Helmets are required for all City sponsored bike rides.

Third Friday Bike Ride is May 21

Decatur Active Living is hosting the Third Friday Bike Ride on Friday, May 21. Meet in front of the Decatur Recreation Center and be ready to put wheels down at 6:30 pm. The ride is approximately 6 miles through Decatur neighborhoods and on the PATH. This is a no-drop ride; no one will be left behind.

GA Commute Options will be joining us, so come by early to pick up some freebies!

Please wear a helmet and a face covering.

This ride is not appropriate for children.

For more information on biking in the City, visit

It is Bike to Work Week!

Join us this week as we celebrate Bike to Work Week!

Bike commute to work and log your ride on to enter into a drawing for a  $25 gift card.

Stop by our Energizer Station at Decatur Recreation Center on Friday, May 21, 7-9 am. We will have Chick-fil-a biscuits and giv-aways. Our partner, GA Commute Options will also be joining us.

Join us for the Third Friday Bike Ride, May 21, at 6:30 pm. The ride begins at the Decatur Recreation Center at 6:30 pm and goes approximately 6 miles. Helmets are required. We will have some giveaways at this event as well.

Bike to Work Week is May 17 -21

Join us for Bike to Work Week next week. Log your rides on and be entered to win a $25 gift certificate. We have 8 to give away!

On Tuesday we will do a ride on the PATH with Decatur police- this will be a 4 mile ride on the PATH and bike lanes. Meet in front of the Decatur Police station; we will leave promptly at 1 pm. Please be sure to wear your helmet!

Stop by our Bike to Work Energizer Station on Friday between 7 and 9 am for a Chick-fil-a biscuit and some bike month give-aways. Then on Friday night we will host our Third Friday Bike Ride. Meet in front of the Decatur Recreation Center and be ready to ride at 6:30 pm. We will ride approximately 6 miles at a social pace. This ride is not recommended for children.

For more information on biking in Decatur click here.

What to Bring while Bicycling

As with anytime you leave your home it’s always good practice to have identification, a cell phone, and cash.

Bike Lock
Your standard equipment should include a good lock—you’ll need it if you are going to leave your bike unattended for even a very short amount of time. For the best security, use a cable lock to loop through your seat and a U-lock to link the bike frame and front wheel to the bike rack. A heavy chain lock can do all three, but keep in mind they can be heavy to carry.

Only bring the tools for the work you know how to do.

You will also want to bring some water and a snack if you are doing a longer ride.

Wear Your Bike Helmet Correctly

Wearing a bike helmet improperly is like not wearing a helmet at all!

Fitting a Helmet:
•    Place it on your head without fastening the straps
•    There should be a two-fingers width between your eyebrows and helmet
•    There should be little movement when you shake your head from side to side
•    You will want to start out with the smallest size– you may have to try on different sizes and brands of helmets until you find one that fits

Adjusting Your Helmet:
•    The side straps should come to a point just below your ears forming a “Y” shape
•    When your mouth is closed, there should be about half an inch between the chin strap and your chin