This page hosts updates on both existing and upcoming bicycle improvements and projects in the City of Merced.
Sharrows are not new to California, but are unfamiliar to some in Merced. These shared lane markings are present in downtown Merced on Main Street, as well as in South Merced on West Avenue, W. 8th Street, W. 11th Street, G Street and M Street. If you are unfamiliar with what a sharrow looks like, what they mean, and what you are supposed to do – please see the information below.
- What do sharrows look like?
- The sharrows symbol is a bicycle with a double-lined directional arrow. The markings are painted on the ground in the driving lane (depicted above).
- What is the purpose of sharrows?
- The Shared Lane Markings, also known as “sharrows” show bicyclists where to safely ride to avoid being hit by car doors being opened by motorists. This type of “door zone” collision is common and many inexperienced bicyclists ride too close to parked cars.
- What are you supposed to do when you see sharrows?
- Motorists: When you see sharrows, be respectful of bicyclists sharing the driving lane with vehicles. Keep a safe distance, and always allow three (3) feet when passing a bicyclist.
- Bicyclists: Ride centered over the sharrows symbol, and travel in the same direction as the arrow. Be aware of vehicles on the road that may need to pass you.
- Are sharrows part of a new law?
- No – the use of sharrows is meant to reinforce existing laws. Some cities (including Merced) do not allow bicycles on specified sidewalks. City Municipal Code Section 10.44.040 prohibits bicycles on the sidewalks from “V” Street to “G” Street on Main Street.
Bike Path Maintenance
The Streets and Parks Divisions of the Public Works Department are responsible for maintaining bike paths throughout the City of Merced.
To learn more about the City's maintenance program visit the Bike Path Maintenance website, or to report a pothole, overgrown bush, or other bike path issues, call the Public Works Department at (209) 385-6800.