Today’s Headlines

  • Shocker: Vincent Gentile’s DOT "Review" Bill Spurred by Brooklyn Bike Lane (Observer)
  • Reckless Driver Plows Into Queens Bus Stop, Injuring 7; NYPD: "Just an Accident" (News, Post, WCBS)
  • Decrepit Hunts Point 6 Station One of 50 Targeted by Under-Funded MTA Capital Plan (News, City Hall)
  • Lots of Subway Maintenance Scheduled This Weekend (Post)
  • Fulton Street Center Reportedly on Track for 2014 Completion (2nd Ave Sagas)
  • Livable Streets Education Marks Walk to School Day in Washington Square (Planetizen
  • Fearing for Kids’ Lives, New Dorp Residents Turn to Homemade Speed Bumps (Advance)
  • School Plans Raise Traffic Fears in Boerum Hill (Bklyn Eagle)
  • Visitors Flocked to Car-Free Governors Island This Summer (Metro)
  • Meet Bill de Blasio’s Republican Challenger, Aide to Sen. Andrew Lanza (NY1)
  • Post Continues Wall-to-Wall Coverage of "Street Clogging" Pedicabs; Priceless Quotes Ensue
  • Car-Crazed Miami on the Verge of Approving Bike Master Plan (Transit Miami via Streetsblog.net)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • Car Free Nation

    The discussion on State Street about Brooklyn Friends hits home. I don’t know why a small minority of BFS parents insist on driving to school, when it’s in a perfect location for either cycling or transit. BFS teaches the kids to be eco-friendly, and yet their parents drive them to school in SUVs. Some parents drive only three or four blocks.

    The fact that BFS won’t be able to build in this space because they won’t set a reasonable policy on parent driving is really sad. Those 60 cars represent a small minority of students.

  • JSD

    While I applaud those Staten Island residents for taking the initiative and installing speed bumps, I doubt how effective they might be. In my experiences, people often speed to the speed bump, slow down just before, and continue speeding after. That, or they simply drive a wide arc around the bump, avoiding them altogether, while simultaneously endangering other traffic and pedestrians.

    There is a culture of disregarding traffic regulations on Staten Island that will probably take more than a generation of high gas prices to fix. The roads are wide, the cars are plentiful, and in many areas, stores are too far away and located in strip malls behind yet more cars. It’ll change, but not anytime soon.

  • Glenn

    It’s really hard to find a politician actually opposed to bike lanes on principle. We seem to have won that philosophical debate somewhere along the line or politicians are at least recognizing that they can’t avoid the issue anymore. But Gentile’s quote is a familiar one, like out of Democratic machine textbook:

    “We’re not against bicycle lanes, we’re just against the way it was configured.”

    This rings so hollow that anyone who cares one bit about bike lanes that it effectively sounds like opposition to any progress on the issue and holds out the potential for bike lanes being scattered about the city in “non-essential” corridors that don’t function as a network.

    The media needs to do a better job at following up on these types of statements. If not this configuration Mr. Gentile, then what? If the “community” (assuming there is something close to a concensus on the issue) wants a different configuration, what exactly would that look like? How would that link together with other bike routes in other neighborhoods?

  • Geck

    Some of my best friends are bike lanes.

  • “If they want to whine, these are things that a regular motorist would have to do,” said City Councilman Leroy Comrie (D-Queens). “We don’t allow motorists on the road without identification and proper insurance.”

    Somebody better tell Councilman Comrie that pedicabs don’t have motors.

  • Re Brooklyn Friends: If you read the articles carefully, the traffic estimates are put forward exclusively by the residents’ group. The group in fact credits the school with asking its staff to walk or take the subway to work.

    But setting ambitious plans for expansion and at the same time asking parents not to drive their kids to school seem contradictory.

    Car Free Nation, when you say “I don’t know why a small minority of BFS parents insist on driving to school, when it’s in a perfect location for either cycling or transit,” are you being disingenuous, or do you really have no clue?

  • Ian Turner

    It was recently shown that the #1 reason parents drive their children to school is “stranger danger”, which, of course, is equally unlikely whether the distance is 2 blocks or 20.

  • Josh

    From local artist Christina Kelly, via Boerum Hill Blog, via Brownstoner, an interesting (to me, anyway) idea of a way to use some of the sidewalk space recently added by street narrowing at the intersection of Bergen and Smith Streets:

    http://boerumhillblog.wordpress.com/2009/10/07/native-corn-may-grace-smith-st-next-year/

  • @Josh,

    When those cornstalks get tall and thick enough, will cyclists be able to lock their bikes to them?

  • Kaja

    DOT took the screenline off the Manhattan Bridge today.

    That can only mean NUMBERS, VERY SOON. I am psyched!

  • J. Mork

    Your post seemed interesting, but indecipherable, to me, Kaja.

    While I didn’t find the exact definition, I did find that NYC DOT uses the world “screenline” with regard to bicycle counts.

    Can you explain further what a “screenline” is?

  • Kaja

    A screenline a collection of traffic volume meters, which together measure aggregate traffic flows in and out of whatever area. The meters are a six inch cubic metal box with long rubber hoses extending from it across the roadway. Passing traffic squeezes the two hoses in sequence, letting the box measure direction and quantity of travel.

    ‘The screenline’ is how the DOT refers to the cycle traffic meters on the downtown Manhattan bridge crossings. I don’t see one on the Brooklyn or Williamsburg this year, but were installed on the Manhattan and the 59th St this spring.

    Last year DOT released its “33% summertime cycling boom!” counts in the fall, and judging by the removal of the boxes, I suspect they’re about to do it again. And I am psyched, because I bet it’s huge.

    Sorry, Mork, I just saw this.

  • J. Mork

    Ah, sure, I’ve seen those boxes. Cool, thanks, Kaja.

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