Plans and goals of the Friends
of the Circle-Heights Bike Network

The goal

To create a network of bike lanes, traffic-calmed streets, designated bike routes and other facilities that will link major activity centers with safe routes for bicycling in University Circle, Cleveland Heights, Shaker Heights and University Heights.

The Circle-Heights district is ideally laid out for alternative transportationbiking, walking, and transit. With surprisingly little work, a comprehensive network of bike facilities can be created to knit the district together in a new way.

In 2002, when EcoCity Cleveland proposed creating a Circle-Heights Bike Network, the plan centered on engaging regional planners, city officials and citizens in the process of designing streets to be more bicycle friendly. Now that the map and suggestions for improvements have been put on the table, the real work of implementing the network can beginthrough a citizen-led effort.

How we can help create the network

A voluntary citizens' group, The Friends of the Circle-Heights Bike Network, is essential in order to generate grass-roots support for the idea of a bike network. The group will also take the lead in steering the creation of a network through the political and physical development process.

Some actions for the group to consider moving on

  • Improve conditions on existing routes
  • Fix 'Missing links' and 'Problem intersections'
  • Designate a system of express routes, bicycle boulevards and off-road paths


a. Express or fast routes
These streets (green on the map) typically provide the most direct way to a destination with the fewest number of stops required. They also have more motorized traffic moving at higher average speed.

b. Bicycle boulevards
These routes (blue on the map) have less traffic which travels at slower speeds. These are less direct routes with more stops.

Improving conditions

a. Short term
The good news is that much of the network can be created inexpensively by marking existing streets with signs and paint (such as bike symbols on the pavement). Recently, EcoCity engaged members of Cleveland Heights and Shaker Heights' planning department and The Cleveland Institute of Art Industrial Design Department in a promising conversation about developing wayfinding signs that would illustrate distances to destinations.
Actions: Follow up is underway.

b. Longer term
Certain fast routes require attention to pavement maintenance and drain grates. Slow routes may benefit from fewer stop signs, high pavement quality, traffic calming to discourage speeding motorists.
Actions: Traffic engineering studies and surveys of road conditions are needed.

c. Missing links & Problem intersections
Making smooth connections throughout the network will require addressing issues such as interrupted street patterns, a lack of north-south connecting routes and problem intersections (those with large expanses of pavement, confusing traffic patterns, etc.). Click for specific examples of Missing links or Problem intersections.

Fixing missing links and problem intersections requires working on solutions such as:

  • striped bike lanes
  • off-street paths
  • pavement widening
  • intersection improvements

Actions: Again, this may involve engaging traffic engineers, city officials, and citizens in a process of planning for needed improvements.

for more information.

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EcoCity Cleveland
3500 Lorain Avenue, Suite 301, Cleveland OH 44113
Cuyahoga Bioregion
(216) 961-5020
Copyright 2002-2003

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