Cyprus Mail

Cycling down confusing lanes along new Paphos road

By Bejay Browne

CONTRACTORS working on the first phase of a new road which will eventually connect Paphos airport to the town’s tourist area have assured that recent markings placed on the new bicycle lanes meet European standards.

Some confusion arose over the recent markings which run alongside the new dual carriageway.

The Cyprus Mail received complaints from residents who misunderstood the markings believing that the red cycle lane is split into two halves with one a designated pedestrian pathway and the other a cycle path.

This is indicated with signs of a bicycle and people, respectively, which would lead those on foot into the pathway of cyclists.

However, resident engineer Iordannis Nicolaou told the Cyprus Mail: “The markings are correct, no mistakes have been made, this isn’t something which we would do on purpose and the signs and markings are internationally recognized.”

Two engineers at the site of the new road explained further.

“The red lane, although split into two sections, is only for cyclists to use and not those on foot. As we drive on the left in Cyprus, there are similar rules which should also be obeyed on the split cycle section. The signs showing people are placed close to junctions to warn cyclists where pedestrians may be crossing their path in order to gain access to cross the road.”

They added that pedestrians shouldn’t be using the red sections at all.

The engineers also pointed out that the paved section running alongside the cycle paths are designated for pedestrians and clearly marked as such with blue signage.

Nicolaou noted that the signs do not mean that cyclists riding in one direction are being instructed to ride head on into the pedestrians following the signs from the other end of the same lane.

He added: “We haven’t completed this section of road yet; there are some finishing touches which need to be done, but it is already proving popular with cyclists.”

Holidaymakers using the cycle lane yesterday said they understood the markings and have seen similar ones in other countries abroad.

The six kilometre stretch comes with a hefty price tag of more than €14m and work on the road started in June 2011.

The first four kilometres is made up of four lanes – two each way – leading to a roundabout; the next two kilometres consist of one lane each way. The road includes pavements and bicycle lanes.

The airport still won’t be accessible via the new road, as that it will be part of phase 2 of the project. Instead, motorists will still use part of the old Paphos to Limassol road to and from the airport.

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