UAB working with City of Birmingham to make urban campus more bike friendly

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — The UAB campus is full of students on bicycles. That has been a growing change over the last few years, according to university leaders. The campus, which sprawls along downtown Birmingham, is also heavily trafficked. Now the university is working with the City of Birmingham to make it easier to navigate that on a bike.

“More and more of our students are local to the campus. They either live on the campus or nearby, so we’re not just a commuter campus anymore, and so more and more requests are coming all the time to add more bicycle infrastructure,” said James Fowler, Director of UAB Planning, Design, and Construction.

This fall, Fowler says students could begin to see changes. There are plans to install bike lanes on 10th Avenue South from 8 to 18th streets.

“Changes that we’re working with Birmingham to make on the streets will hopefully encourage drivers to be a little more aware, to have better driver expectancy. We’re changing the character of the streets so it encourages all of us to be aware that we’re living in a multi-modal environment, not just a driving environment,” said Fowler.

The City of Birmingham owns and maintains the streets that surround UAB’s campus, Fowler says, so the planning is being done in conjunction with the city. More bike lanes could be added over the next several years, depending on when the funding becomes available. That includes lanes on 12th, 13th, and 14th Streets, as well as 5th and 7th Avenue.

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