Video: How to Use the New Forbes Ave Contra-Flow Bike Lane

Pittsburgh’s first contra-flow bike lane

Due to the complexity of the street grid, the new bike lanes on Forbes Ave in Oakland have some features that are new to Pittsburgh.

Most notable are the City’s first “Contra-flow” bike lanes. These bike lanes are designed for riders to go the opposite direction of cars, in order for westbound bicyclists to access Schenley Plaza as well as the bike lanes on Bigelow Blvd. These bike lanes are only meant to be ridden in the one direction.

The contra-flow bike lane begins at Bellefield Ave, where Forbes Ave goes from a one-way street to a two-way street. What’s changed is that all westbound traffic still needs to turn onto Bellefield Ave – except bikes. Take a look at our 60-second video above to learn how to use this new bike lane.


Good question. Forbes and Bellefield is a complicated intersection where the road turns from a one-way street to a two-way street.

  1. To accommodate bicycle travel at this intersection, the City is installing our first ever bicycle signal and a dedicated signal phase for people on bicycles to follow across the intersection.
  2. For people on bicycles to turn left onto Bellefield we are installing a temporary two-stage left on the sidewalk so that someone turning left can get safely out of the path of travel to wait. In the final design, to be installed by PennDOT in 2018, a two-stage turning pocket will be cut into the sidewalk.

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