'Sharrows' point to safer roundabout cycling

16 November 2017

A new type of road marking designed to improve the safety of cyclists is coming to a New Plymouth roundabout.

Sharrows, or ‘share arrows’, will be painted next week at the recently-upgraded roundabout at the Mill/Frankley/Standish/Dawson/Downe intersection. The on-road markings have been used internationally since 1993 to indicate the likely presence of cyclists and motorists in the same lane.

“They’ve also been used in Wellington and Auckland for the last three years and they’re useful when there isn’t enough space on the road to build dedicated cycle lanes,” says NPDC Infrastructure Manager David Langford.

“The markings will encourage cyclists to merge with other traffic in the centre of the lane when approaching and going around the roundabout, and they’ll alert motorists that cyclists will be travelling with them in that space.

“Cyclists already have to use the road lane when going around a roundabout and these sharrows will encourage road users to be more considerate of each other.”

Those riders not comfortable merging with traffic can use the footpath to walk around the roundabout.

Australian research shows that sharrow markings increase distances between cyclists and drivers and also increase cyclists’ safety.

NPDC will monitor the effectiveness of the sharrows before considering their use at other sites.

NPDC manages assets worth $2.5 billion, has an operating budget of $130 million and employs 506 full time staff. We reliably provide all the core services you’d expect – roads, water and waste – as well as dynamic Parks, Libraries, an art gallery, commercial forestry, a Zoo, Venues such as Yarrow Stadium/TSB Showplace and events such as the iconic Festival of Lights at Pukekura Park.