The sign the Medina County Bicycle Task Force is working to have placed throughout Medina County.
NATHAN HAVENNER / GAZETTE Enlarge
The Medina County Bicycle Task Force is working to place signs reminding motorists to provide cyclists at least 3 feet of clearance when passing them on the road, task force President Beth Schnabel said.
“When a motorist sees that sign at the beginning of the street, if they see a cyclist they are reminded, ‘Hey, this is a state law, and we do need to give them that 3 feet and not force them to go off the road,’” she said this week.
Schnabel said Medina Township resident and cyclist Murray Van Epp donated $5,000 toward the project, which will allow the task force to purchase 40 signs.
“One of the reasons he likes these signs, and he likes the idea of it, is he’s a biker,” she said. “He said riding along the side of (state Route) 18 is not fun.”
Each sign will be black and white, and depict a bicycle in the center with “Pass Min. 3 Ft.” at the top and bottom.
Schnabel said she has spoken with officials in the city of Medina, as well as Liverpool, York and Litchfield townships, and received positive feedback.
Schnabel said she is asking each entity to provide the post for the signs and to install them.
“My dream is (that) we could start over on the edge of Lorain County and be able to bike through Medina County and exit out at Wadsworth and get over there on the canal towpath,” she said.
A goal of the project is to connect points of interests for cyclists, and hopefully provide cyclists with a safer ride in the process, she said.
“I know what works, and I know in other states, even in other counties, they have already a network of trails and roadways that go with bike lanes,” Schnabel said.
Some cyclists residing in the county will pack up their bikes and drive to surrounding areas that have these routes and trails, she said.
In addition to making roads safer, a cyclist-friendly community can have a positive economic impact, Schnabel said.
“Bicyclists love to go have a snack, an ice cream cone, sit down for a meal, so if we can get some of these routes to actually come into the cities, that (will benefit) the economy,” Schnabel said.
Schnabel said she hopes to have the initial 40 signs installed by the end of fall, with another batch of signs in 2019.
“Medina County then could become where bikers could say, ‘Oh yeah, they will make this ride more enjoyable and safer. They are doing their best.’”
Contact reporter Nathan Havenner at (330) 721-4050 or email@example.com.