Dear Steve Cuozzo —
I was ready to ignore your rant yesterday,
IDIOTIC DOT TAKES A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE,
as another in The Post’s reflexive (if well-written) screeds against any incursion into
NYC car-dominance, when I came across this
"The madness just came to Grand Street as well, where
a dangerous bike lane is shunned by any sane cyclist."
I take that personally, seeing as how just
last Sunday, my teenage son and I used the
Grand Street bike lane to ride from Hudson
Square to the East Village.
The lane was great. The green paint, the arrows
that mark the lane at intersections, and the strategic
placement of the lane between the curb and the
line of parked cars, evidently made it clear to
our fellow New Yorkers that this was indeed a
bicycle lane. For the entire distance, a good 3/4
of a mile, we only had to maneuver around one
parked car and a handful of pedestrians.
Otherwise, it was smooth sailing, and a lot
safer and more relaxing than the usual Sunday
traffic mix. For me, it’s no big deal, I’m an
adult and have been cycling daily here for 35
years. But for my 14-year-old, who’s still learning
what it takes to maintain his legal right to
the road in the face of swarms of cars and
trucks, many of them operated heedlessly,
the lane made a big difference.
I know the Post pays you to ridicule anything
that deviates an inch from the USA-SUV norm;
but how you can call the Grand Street bike lane
dangerous is beyond me.
Oh, I almost forgot to mention where we were
biking that day: to a movie house on East
Houston Street to see "Man on Wire," the
documentary film about Philippe Petit’s 1974
wire-walk between the Twin Towers. The film is
a testament to the human spirit and imagination —
the same spirit, I would say, that animates me
as a cyclist, and the same imagination that is,
finally, guiding the new DOT to create a bit of
safe space for non-motorized vehicular travel in
New York City.
(father of two, a New Yorker since 1968)