What are the different bikeway facility types?

There are many references to bike facility types in various articles and presentations on bike facility types. The following is a list of the four bike facility types used in California.


Class I - Bike Path

Bike Paths, commonly referred to as shared-use or multiuse trails, are fully separated bike facilities, exclusively for the use of bike and pedestrians. There is some interaction with vehicles which is limited to trail crossing with the roadway. The Monterey Peninsula Recreation Trail along the coastline in the City of Monterey is an example of this.


Class II - Bike Lanes

Bike lanes, are a portion of the roadway that is striped for one-way bike travel. Buffered bike lanes also fall into this category, this is when a bike lane is accompanied by a painted striped buffer between the bike lane and parking or travel lane.


Class III - Bike Route

Bike Routes are shared facilities with with pedestrian or motor vehicle traffic. The primary purpose is to provide a connection to other bicycle facilities (typically Class II); or designate preferred bike routes. Bike routes are indicated by bike route signs and shared roadway markings along the route.


Class IV - Separated Bikeway

Separated bikeways, sometimes referred to as protected bike lanes or cycletracks, provides a bikeway for the exclusive use by bicycles. What differentiates this from a Class I or a Class II is that is that it cannot be used by pedestrians or vehicles and it must include a horizontal and/or vertical separation. These horizontal and vertical separators can include: flexible posts, on-street parking, grade separation, railing or planters.

These are an example of traditional bike facility types, for more examples including bike treatments at intersections take a look at Caltrans Bikeway Classification Brochure.

Source: Caltrans Classification Brochure, 2017.

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