Bicycle lanes set to open in Penang

GEORGE TOWN - Cyclists passing through Tanjung Bungah in Penang will now have something to cheer about as a 1.2km stretch of road there has been converted into bicycle lanes.

Under a trial run, the stretch by the roadside is now painted in green to mark a dedicated lane for bicycles. It is the first of its kind in the state.

If successful, the state government will then expand its coverage and create bicycle lanes on both sides of the road all the way from Tanjung Tokong to Balik Pulau, a two-way distance of about 60km.

The G Club Penang Cyclists chairman Dr Lim Seh Guan said that the field trial is made up of four 30m sections and each section uses a different paint material and application technique.

"The lane is 90cm across. Bicycles average about 60cm in width, so the lane would be sufficient for riders who are going in single file," he said.

He said that the bicycle lanes would not be exclusively for cyclists but rather built on a shared road concept which was used by the City of London Corporation in Britain.

"The painted lane doesn't mean that cars cannot drive onto it. It is only meant to alert motorists to give priority to cyclists. When they pass cyclists, the lane would encourage them to make sufficient space to allow them to pass without incident," he said.

The trial run starts from the road in front of the Flamingo Hotel by the Beach and ends some distance after the Dalat International School. The project was proposed by the club to the state government.

Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng is expected to open the bicycle lane at 8am tomorrow. All interested parties are welcome to witness the launch.