Outside of the golf course, most golf cart owners opt to drive their LSVs, Ezgos, and Club Cars around the neighborhood. Here, low speed vehicles can safely maneuver around parked vehicles and other automobiles that roll by.
Although this “share the road” mentality is generally upheld across the United States, many golf cart owners are branching out from these LSV safe areas. As a result, city officials are trying to compensate for the slower moving devices.
One of the more novel approaches to this evolution is establishing golf cart lanes. Let’s take a look at what they are and why all cities may adopt the road related addition in the future.
What is a Golf Cart Lane?
In Canyon Lake, California a new seven foot lane was recently added to a road called Canyon Lake Drive North. This diagonally marked strip, also known as a buffer zone, was established for golf carts and other LSVs to drive on.
According to Eric Kazakoff, General Manager of Canyon Lake POA, “The Canyon Lake POA incorporated this striping plan into our pavement project in an effort to make golf cart traffic on this section of Canyon Lake Drive North much safer”.
That said, the “buffer zone” sits between a slow and a fast lane. Vehicles capable of going the speed limit are supposed to drive on the left side of the strip and park on the right side of the golf cart lane.
To bypass the road obstructions in the “park” lane, golf cart drivers are supposed to use the “buffer zone” to safely shimmy around the vehicles without putting themselves in danger. Then, once they have passed, LSVs are supposed to go back to the far right lane. In theory, the new road design helps drivers determine where LSVs are and avoid them while parking.
As for drivers of lifted golf cart and other LSVs, the golf cart lane should generate a safe space to ride on. In a statement issued by Steve Libring, Canyon Lake Traffic Engineer, “This striping helps provide positive guidance for regular vehicles driving on the road to stay left of the buffer zone”.
Libring went on to state the LSV drivers in can safely use the diagonally marked area since it also “…provides maximum safety for residents if they stay right of the buffer zone.”
Areas With Golf Cart Lanes
Clearly, buffer zones, also known as golf cart lanes, are beneficial for keeping LSV operators safe. That said, these seven foot wide diagonally striped lanes are a far cry from the more commonly used bike lane. In case you are not familiar, these designated areas are specifically for cyclists and the width of the lanes reflect that.
Nevertheless, cities may look to expand these lanes to accommodate golf cart drivers in the future. This option may be implemented due to the cost-effectiveness of expansion compared to the price of developing brand new lanes exclusively for LSVs to drive on.
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