THORNTON, Colo. — Bicyclists in Thornton no longer have to come to a complete stop at stop signs. The city just updated its traffic laws, which now allow cyclists to slow down — but not completely stop — at intersections.
The city claims to be the first in the Denver metro area to pass such a measure.
Darrell Austin, a traffic engineer for Thornton, said the “safety stop” has its roots in Idaho.
“We’re trying to make Thornton a more bike-friendly city,” said Austin.
The measure allows cyclists to yield at stop signs without coming to a complete stop. At red lights, cyclists have to stop. However, they can proceed through the intersection when clear.
“If you have a red light, you would have to stop and proceed if its safe to do so without waiting for it to turn green,” said Austin.
Austin said that with a growing population and a rail line on the horizon, the need to adapt to a larger cyclist population is greater than ever. He said the measure could lead to success seen in cities where bicyclists crashes have decreased by 30 to 60 percent.
Correction: An earlier version of this article misspelled Darrell Austin’s name.