Tonight: Opposition to Kent Ave Bike Lane Expected at CB1 Meeting

New bike facilities on Kent Avenue are expected to be the subject of protest tonight from motorists angry about the removal of on-street parking.

E-mails circulating in advance of this evening’s meeting of the Brooklyn Community Board 1 transportation committee are calling for officials to suspend installation of the Kent Avenue bike lane in lieu of further study. The partially-constructed lane is a key component of a Brooklyn bike lane network as well as the future Brooklyn Greenway, and is already getting plenty of use.

Though CB1 signed off on the lane last April, and community board recommendations are non-binding, it is imperative that board members hear from those whose interests extend beyond the perceived convenience of copious free on-street parking. Judging by one unsourced missive (see it here), it looks like the opposition is pulling out all the stops, claiming, among other things, that changes on Kent have created hardships and hazards for children — who are presumably far more secure with the status quo.

Here are the details for tonight:

CB1 Transportation Committee Meeting
Wednesday, November 12
211 Ainslie Street, corner of Manhattan Avenue, Williamsburg
6:30 pm — registration for public speaking ENDS at 6:15

  • Streetsman

    Is that right what it says in the missive? The DOT turned 30 blocks of parking on both sides of the street into all out No Stopping so you technically can’t even load or discharge passengers for that whole stretch? That doesn’t sound right. If it is right, that seems a little severe.

  • There are still tons of trucks, vans and cabs parking-stopping-sitting in the new bike lanes on Kent.

    Especially construction trucks. They are chilling in the wide open new bike lanes, sitting in their cabs, eating breakfast. They seem to really love it. Maybe they should show up and support the new bike lanes.

  • Gerald Esposito

    All BIKE LANES ARE BEING IMPLEMENTED UNDER A MAYORAL DIRECTIVE
    THRU THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND ARE NOT SUBJECT TO
    COMMUNITY BOARD APPROVAL (or review) !!!!!!!!
    However, We at Community Board # 1, Brooklyn welcome comments
    relative to the needs of our constituents at any time.

  • I can’t make the meeting but I believe Kent needs this bikelane quite badly. Here on Streetsblog I have posted a vid of a high speed pass on Kent by the Navy yard. And I have a photo on Flickr of an 18 wheeler lodged in the first floor of a house on Kent around N.12th. If someome could please use these tonight that would be great They are only some of the crazy things you see while commuting on that lawless stretch of Kent Ave.

    I am on my phone and cannot copy and paste. But if you google: “captaindisko kent ave” both show up.

    It seems to me, the people opposing this bikelane, are the very people that give cause to have it there in the first place.

  • All BIKE LANES ARE BEING IMPLEMENTED UNDER A MAYORAL DIRECTIVE
    THRU THE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION AND ARE NOT SUBJECT TO
    COMMUNITY BOARD APPROVAL (or review) !!!!!!!!

    And a good thing too! We probably wouldn’t have an inch of bike lane in the city if they had to go through these unelected bodies.

  • INFO Mation

    Attend a Transportation Town Hall Meeting

    W/ Councilman David Yassky & The Commissioner of the Dept. of Transportation

    6 p.m. Monday November 24 th.
    Swinging 60’s senior center
    211 Ainslie Street (corner of manhattan ave.)

    Topics will include: Subway& Bus service
    Bike lanes/racks
    Truck traffic
    Street Parking solutions
    Traffic on kent ave. and MORE…….

  • Community Board Maven

    Community Boards represent the families, residents, block associations, small businesses, mom&pops, PTAs, church groups established in a neighborhood. They do not represent developers, rowdy club owners, landlords, ideologues or people with an agenda. They are your neighbors on the street, not your enemy. Unless you are an ideologue with an agenda.

    Yes, they are appointed, but 99% of the people involved in governmental functioning are appointed, including Sadik-Khan. The rest are called politicians.

    So, I am amazed when I read here the irresponsible comments regarding CBs. I guess some people, when they don’t get their way, lash out at people who try to do what is best for their neighbors and their community.

    Bitterly typing away anonymously on a blog is a lot easier than devoting and volunteering one’s time and effort for the common good. The latter takes commitment, maturity and responsibility. The former requires only a computer, solipsism, and mean-spiritedness.

  • Ian Turner

    Maven,

    Can you support your claim that “Community Boards represent the families, residents, block associations, small businesses, mom&pops, PTAs, church groups established in a neighborhood.”? Please provide some evidence of this assertion. Why is it that most New Yorkers don’t even own a car, but most community board members do?

    What does it take to get onto a community board, and what happens when board members vote against the position of their appointers? I think you need look no further than Brooklyn community board 6 to answer this last question.

  • Community Boards represent the families, residents, block associations, small businesses, mom&pops, PTAs, church groups established in a neighborhood. They do not represent developers, rowdy club owners, landlords, ideologues or people with an agenda. They are your neighbors on the street, not your enemy. Unless you are an ideologue with an agenda.

    Okay, what do you call it when community board members want every development, every change, to increase the amount of parking in the district? That’s not an ideology – or an agenda?

  • ms nomer

    #9/Cap’n Transit and all:

    “Okay, what do you call it when community board members want every development, every change, to increase the amount of parking in the district? That’s not an ideology – or an agenda?”

    Clearly you guys don’t engage much with your own community boards — otherwise there’d be more progress and/or more awareness on your part about what’s going on in the city. Not all CBs are comprised of wannabe politicians or non-progressives. Not all embrace car dependence. One recent example:
    http://www.riverdalepress.com/full.php?sid=6503&current_edition=2008-11-06

    I’m with Maven on this one. You guys should take your Streetsblog comments and send them to your respective CBs and demand change. THAT is activism. Here you’re just preaching to the choir. Instead of asking Maven to prove his/her (well stated) case, why don’t you do some old fashioned research and activism yourselves? Or is that too much work?

  • “THAT is activism. Here you’re just preaching to the choir. ”

    If that were true, Community Board Maven wouldn’t be reading and sniffily responding. Demean online activism all you want, but NYC public policy was pretty brain-dead before the internet and in the past few years we’ve seen a dramatic injection of thoughtfulness. Thoughts, typed into friggin’ keyboards, shockingly spreading all the way to the unwelcoming minds of community board mavens. Excuse me if I’m not grateful to those that volunteer to advocate terrible policy on my behalf, but thinking is work too, some would say it’s even harder—or at least more valuable—than tireless defense of the status quo by pushing various tribal (locational, social, and generational) buttons. Oh noes, my middle-class outer boroughs motorist big red button isn’t working anymore! We’ll still be here thinking through all the angles (anonymously on a blog, or working more directly as many commenters here do) long after most people currently serving in the political button pushing capacity have moved on.

    “why don’t you do some old fashioned research and activism yourselves? Or is that too much work?”

    TDK!

  • Kent Resident

    We, Kent residents and business have nowhere to load or unload drop off kids. We live and work in the midst of the BQE. This will not work. It has to be changed. Yet we are in no way against the bike lane if worked out under the needs of residents and business owners. Don’t be stupid. This bike lane in its current form is such an outcry that it will be and should be removed ASAP.

  • Where? What businesses? What residences? I ride the stretch of Kent from the BQE until it turns to Franklin, there are construction sites, industrial factories, a yoga place, a signless bar, an empty sugar refinery, where are you talking about? And where, can you not pull onto a side street or parking lot provided by the building? Kent is a lawless and un-Policed highway, nearly every car disregards speed limits, center lines and street signs. Kent Avenue needs that bike path as evidenced by the selfish and dangerous drivers who fly down that street every day. The motorists cutting through for work, and the people who live in the neighborhood that borders Kent all need a clear delineation where they are to speed and illegally pass one another, and where to expect and allow bicycles to travel.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Brooklyn CB1 Hears Two Proposals for Safer Streets Tonight

|
We’ve got some more community board action for you today. Brooklyn Community Board 1, which represents Williamsburg and Greenpoint, is set to hear proposals for new buffered bike lanes on Kent Avenue and for improving pedestrian safety at dangerous intersections in North Brooklyn. The bike lanes are an interim step on the way to completing […]

Kent Ave Bike Lane Stirs Passions in Williamsburg

|
The Kent Avenue lane at work, with squad car. Photo: i’m not sayin, i’m just sayin. New York’s latest bike lane skirmish flared up Monday night at a "transportation town hall" in Williamsburg. About 150 people turned out, and DOT bike program coordinator Josh Benson caught an earful from bike lane opponents upset over new […]

Brooklyn CB1 Approves Bike Path in Place of Parking

|
Here’s how space is divvied up on Kent Avenue today… On Tuesday night, Community Board 1 in north Brooklyn voted 39-2 to support adding a separated bike path to Kent Avenue, a truck route through Williamsburg and Greenpoint. The path will be part of the Brooklyn Greenway, which is slated to follow the waterfront from […]

Cyclist Turnout Impressive at CB1 Meeting on Kent Ave Bike Lane

|
The Kent Ave. bike lane at work. Photo: New York Times Supporters of the besieged Kent Avenue bike lane made a strong showing at last night’s meeting of Brooklyn Community Board 1. About 150 people showed up, says Transportation Alternatives’ Elena Santogade, and of the 60 or so speakers, only three opposed the current configuration. […]

The Livable Streets Backlash Claims a Victim at Brooklyn’s CB1

|
Teresa Toro, one of New York City’s most productive livable streets activists in recent years, has been deposed as chair of Brooklyn Community Board 1’s Transportation Committee. CB1 covers the Williamsburg and Greenpoint neighborhoods of Brooklyn and has recently been embroiled in bitter fighting over the new bike lanes on Kent Avenue. CB1’s executive committee […]

Tonight: Support Brooklyn Greenway and Safe Cycling at Kent Ave Meeting

|
Come out tonight and support the city’s first two-way, on-street protected bike path. If you care about safe biking in Williamsburg and Greenpoint and you’d like to see the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway eventually reach completion, you’ll want to show up at tonight’s Brooklyn CB1 transportation meeting. The Kent Avenue bike lane is item number one […]