Protected Intersections: The Basic Idea

The basic idea behind the design is that it protects people biking, walking and driving from each other. As with protected bike lanes, there are many ways to create protected spaces, including concrete, bollards, plastic posts and more.

Protected bike intersections have been common throughout Europe for decades, and have finally become recommended practice in the U.S., researched and endorsed by state transportation agencies.



Check out this excellent, brief video, which clearly explains the concept.


  • Easy sight lines for everyone, making turns safer and less stressful for all
  • Easier, safer right and left turns for people on bikes
  • Shorter crossing distances for people on foot
  • More predictable, less stressful navigation for people driving cars and trucks

Tour Examples Around the World

Protected Intersections in San Francisco

To date, the City has built its first protected intersection for part of 9th Street & Division. There is a clear need for protected intersections throughout the city. Glaring examples include the intersection of the Panhandle and Stanyan Street, most streets in SOMA and downtown and Polk & Market.


Image Credits
  • John Greenfield (header image)
  • MassDOT Separated Bike Lane Planning & Design Guide