GALT (CBS13) — Some new bike lanes in Galt are attracting a lot of attention. Wide stripes of bright green paint are lining stretches of residential streets.
City officials say their purpose is to enhance safety for bicyclists, but some Galt residents say they’re an unattractive distraction.
The city of Galt is going green.
“It’s not just a couple of spots, it’s all over town,” said Galt resident Shawn Farmer.
The bright green high visibility paint is showing up in 200-foot-long sections, bringing a bold new layer of protection to bicyclists.
Mother Gabby Alvarado said, “They should be bold and bright, makes them stand out. That’s good. I wouldn’t want my kid getting hit by a bike.”
But to some, the bike lanes are borderline blinding.
Galt resident Steve Adams said, “Very distracting.”
The City of Galt started painting the streets green in early July. The project is funded through state grants totaling $6 million to cover six miles of road.
“It’s mostly to do with around school areas or high-density areas where you’re going to have bicycles,” said Galt Deputy Public Works Director Mark Clarkson.
Clarkson says the paint alerts driver and bicyclists of a potential conflict like an intersection and says the color was selected as the new federal standard for bike lanes.
“It’s going to dull over the next couple of years.”
Similar bike lanes have recently popped up in bigger cities like Sacramento and Davis, but in Galt, where the bike lanes are filling up residential streets, many want the green gone
Galt resident Sergio De La Vega said, “I think it looks horrible.”
Shawn Farmer is running for the Galt City Council. He’s also on the city’s Public Safety Committee and says safety is a priority, but he’s worried about the impact such a drastic change in the landscape could have on homeowners.
“Aesthetically, it’s just, it’s ugly,” said Farmer, “there’s a house across the street for sale right now. That would be a deal killer for me.”
Bright new bike lanes intended to save more lives, but the green paint they’re made of could take some getting used to.
“I think it will end up being a positive.”
The City of Galt says the bike lanes are the new city standard and in the next few years will start showing up throughout wherever marked bike lanes already exist in the city, as well as in any new subdivisions.