How to use a Contra-flow Bike Turn Box

What are those short green bike lanes on one-ways in Pittsburgh?

It’s called a contra-flow bike turn box (until we find a better name that is).

This piece of infrastructure was designed by City Planner, Paige Anderson, combining the concept of contra-flow lanes and bike turn boxes.

You can find contraflow lanes along Forbes ave, here. These allow people on bikes a safe place to ride against the flow of motor vehicle traffic. You can find bike boxes at intersections along East Liberty Blvd, here. These create a safe and visible place for people on bikes to pause before a turn.

With their powers combined, contra-flow bike turn boxes allow people on bikes to momentarily ride against the one-way traffic before turning to cross the intersection.

CYCLING TIPS: Contra-flow Bike Turn Box


Enter the bike lane

Stop at the stop sign, then enter the contra-flow bike lane.


Yield to on coming traffic

Take a look both ways to check for vehicles and pedestrians. People on bikes must yield to vehicles coming down the one-way and pedestrians.


Proceed through the intersection

If there are no oncoming vehicles, you may continue on. Enjoy!


DRIVERS: You are NOT allowed to make this turn

People driving motor vehicles may not make this turn, as there is no safe infrastructure for you to drive the wrong way down a one-way street.

You can find contra-flow bike turnboxes at two intersections in Bloomfield/Friendship at the intersection of Coral St and S Aiken Ave, as well as Coral St and S Winebiddle St.

Posted by Samone Riddle

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