Green Bike, a service that provides free bicycles to anyone who wants to use them to get around Waldport, is looking to make bicycling a little nicer for locals and visitors alike. Green Bike lead mechanic and volunteer coordinator Rick Hill told the council he would like the council to authorize adding “Sharrows” to city streets where bicycling is encouraged. Sharrows are painted (or vinyl applied) symbols on regular travel roads to remind motorists that bicycles can be expected to use the roads as well, and to be on the lookout for them. It’s a safety thing.
Hill said that Newport recently added sharrows to a number of their streets as a safety reminder. Hill said Newport loans the stencils to other Lincoln County communities free of charge. He asked the council to designate which streets the sharrows should be painted on. Mayor Susan Woodruff said it would most likely have to be just on city streets for starters – maybe not on Highway 101 or 34, since those are under the jurisdiction of ODOT. Councilors came up with a number of streets that the sharrows would be good for by routing visitors to specific locations like parks, the port, visitors center, the beach, the post office, etc. City Manager Nancy Leonard said she’ll contact ODOT to see if they’d entertain sharrows and, if so, where.
Hill also posed the idea of the council establishing specific bike routes throughout the area so tourists could more fully enjoy their bike riding in Waldport. The council thought that was a good idea – in fact it was also suggested that the city work with the South Lincoln County Trail Committee which is in the process of updating trails for hikers, horseback riders, aquatic travelers and bicyclists. A member of the committee was in the audience and said “let’s do it!”