On Wednesday, Tell CB 8: Protected Bike Lanes Protect Everyone

The Community Board 8 committee vote this month in support of protected bike lanes for Manhattan’s Upper East Side was nothing short of momentous. Wednesday’s full board decision presents an even bigger hurdle, though by no means an insurmountable one. The reason, says Caroline Samponaro, director of bicycle advocacy for Transportation Alternatives, is community input.

"This past month at CB 8 has really been all about neighbors convincing neighbors," Samponaro says. "Residents of all stripes came out to support protected lanes at the last committee meeting, and it made a big impression on the board."

Turnout will be crucial for tomorrow night’s meeting, when board members should be reminded of the benefits of protected bike lanes for all street users, including reduced crossing distances for pedestrians and fewer conflicts between sidewalk users and cyclists who don’t feel safe riding in street traffic. Longtime UES advocate Glenn posted salient talking points earlier today.

If you’ve ever made the case for safer streets to Community Board 8, or if you’ve been waiting for an opportune moment, now’s the time to follow up or follow through.

WHAT: Community Board 8 Full Board Meeting
WHEN: Wednesday, October 21, 6:30 p.m.
WHERE: Ramaz School Auditorium, 125 E. 85th St.

  • Glenn

    Upper Green Side’s letter to the Community Board 8:

    Dear Jacqueline Ludorf Chairperson, Community Board 8

    Upper Green Side applauds the Community Board 8’s Transportation Committee for unanimously approving a resolution supporting the idea of protected bike lanes as part of a citywide network to protect all street users.

    A recent NYC Department of Transportation study showed substantial safety benefits of protected bike lanes by preventing crashes, injuries and deaths. The protected on-street bike routes in Manhattan on Eighth Avenue, Ninth Avenue and Grand Street have all improved safety along their routes by nearly 30%.

    The reason that protected bike lanes work is that they bring order and structure to a street and helps to regulate the flow of all street users. Pedestrians and motorists know where to look for cyclists as they are congregated in one space where a steady flow serves as a constant reminder of their presence to other street users.

    Protected bike lanes also encourage a healthier lifestyle, allowing everyday responsible commuters that are currently worried about safety issues to give up their overcrowded bus or train for a bike. This would have the benefit of reducing overcrowding on mass transit and potentially reduce automobile / taxi traffic as well.

    Protected bike lanes, especially one combined with Bus Rapid Transit, would greatly improve the safety, flow and health of people moving within and through the Upper East Side. We hope the Full Board approves the resolution passed by the Transportation Committee and works together with the NYC DOT to bring protected bike lanes to the Upper East Side.

    Sincerely

    Glenn McAnanama
    President, Upper Green Side

    Upper Green Side is a 501c3 non-profit dedicated to practical education and advocacy on local environmental issues with over 180 members in the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

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