Parks Drops Dismount Signage at Upper West Side Greenway Exit

A reader sends along this shot from the Hudson River Greenway exit at W. 72nd Street. Cyclists are apparently no longer required to dismount on the shared path that connects the greenway and Riverside Drive, a ham-handed directive issued by the Parks Department last summer. Our tipster says the new signs have replaced dismount instructions, which were reportedly backed up by threats of summonses.

Good to see Parks acknowledge the value of this link to cyclists with an eye toward safety for all users.

  • John Wirtz

    The combination of the color of the sign with the maple leaf in the logo at the bottom makes this sign look like it belongs in Canada.

  • Danny G

    Nice to see an embrace of common sense, but poor choice of typeface and design. Would love to see a sign based on this one: http://www.flickr.com/photos/xwizexworldtour/1826517315/

  • Jeffrey

    I’d like an adverb please! Shouldn’t it read “Please go slowly”?

  • It didn’t look right to me either Jeffrey, but from what I can tell according to Merriam-Webster “slow” is appropriate.

  • Albert

    Grammar be damned.  I think it’s a great thing, and I hope other dismount signs are similarly replaced across town.

  • Berfore these signs went up, a Parks Department employee(?) would park his SUV at the bottom of the long hill that slopes towards the greenway and give tickets out at the top to cyclists that failed to dismount.  I got yelled at a few months ago while he was writing a ticket to a guy on a folding bike.  It’s a strange world where riding your bike in a park gets you a ticket and driving around in an SUV inside a park is considered normal.

    Ever since then, I’ve been patiently dismounting my bike and pushing it up the hill and through the park to 72nd street.  I’d say compliance with the previous signs never exceeded fifty percent. I wouldn’t say that the situation was dangerous, but it probably made some dog walkers uncomfortable(there’s a dog run that’s accessed by the same path).  Honestly, there needs to be a better solution for accessing the greenway from 72nd street.  The existing hill is way too steep and the paths leading to the water are narrow.  Moreover, there is an unfortunately designed merging of the shared path north of 72nd street and the separate bike/ped paths just before this exit.  The whole thing needs to be reworked. 

  • Also, I’ve always thought that “biker” is used on these signs because it makes people think of motorcycles instead of little things with pedals. How about “bike riders” or “cyclists” instead?     

  • Joe R.

    It’s nice to see common sense prevail with regard to cycling because that’s something which rarely happens in this city.  The idea of dismounting was stupid from the start.  A bike being walked takes up take the width of one being ridden.  Moreover, it isn’t safer.  It’s actually easier for the bike to accidentally fall on someone while it’s being walked.  Imagine the outrage if we posted a sign demanding that motorists get out and push their vehicles?  Well, the idea of asking cyclists to dismount is just as silly.

  • Mark Walker

    The “yield to pedestrians” and “go slow” parts are also welcome.

  • Anonymous

    @twitter-1528021:disqus 

    Toughen up Dan!

    Everyone knows the fastest way up from Hudson River Greenway by 72nd street is to hoist your bike on your shoulder and run up those stairs!

  • Anonymous

    @twitter-1528021:disqus 

    Toughen up Dan!

    Everyone knows the fastest way up from Hudson River Greenway by 72nd street is to hoist your bike on your shoulder and run up those stairs!

  • Anonymous

    “Also, I’ve always thought that “biker” is used on these signs because it
    makes people think of motorcycles instead of little things with pedals.”

    I’m looking for the best “biker” bar to ride to. Suggestions? 😉

  • daphna

    This sign is  huge improvement over “cyclists must dismount” but could be much more effective.  Saying “Caution. Bikers must yield to pedestrians at all times.  Please go slow” does not bring all path users into a spirit of cooperation.  This sign gives joggers and dog walkers the impression that they can do anything, and gives the impression that bicyclists must react to all pedestrian movement and that bicyclists are solely responsible for avoiding conflict on this shared used path.  Better signage would say “Shared path bike and ped”, “Keep right, pass left”, “walk/bike single file when busy”, “keep dogs close”.

    Some pedestrian movements are unpredictable and even a slow, cautious cyclist will have trouble on occasion avoiding them if the pedestrians are not doing their part to cooperate.

    Also, bicyclists automatically go slow enough to avoid collisions because they themselves would be hurt if they hit anything.  It is unnecessary to say “go slow” to cyclists because they are already aware that they must ride at safe speeds for their own welfare.  “Slow” signs for cyclists are offensive and pointless.  “Go slow” signs perpetrate the misperception that cyclists are dangerous and need to be slowed down for safety.

  • daphna

    John Herrold, the Riverside Park Administrator, made the decision to change the paths at 72nd Street and 68th Street from shared use (bike/ped) to pedestrian-only.  He apparently made this decision on his own and had the right to do so even thought these were official Greenway access paths, and thus part of the Greenway (which has rules that are different than the rules of the parks it passes through).  For example, the Greenway is open 24 hours a day while the parks have closing times.  John Herrold then stuck to his bad decision even after pressure from the Parks Committee of Community Board 7.

    John Herrold then sent out letters on March 8, 2011 saying that he had changed the policy from his pedestrian-only idea back to the normal shared-use-bike/ped for 72nd Street.  He wrote that new signs were to have gone up in the Spring.  Spring was March 20 – June 20.  These signs are long overdue. 

  • dporpentine

    Grrrr . . . “slowly” preferable. And periods really wouldn’t hurt either.

    @twitter-47528115:disqus In the Merriam-Webster entry on “slow” in my edition (11th Collegiate)  they don’t produce any examples like this: where it’s used noncomparatively (i.e., not “slower”) and not in any combination with some other adjective that also sometimes appears as an adverb. Here, it cries out for that simple -ly. Substitute “ride” for “go” and it cries out even louder/more loudly/GodsometimesIcan’tstandthislanguage.

  • Anonymous

    If I saw this sign I would probably stop, dismount, and start looking through my backpack for a marker to make corrections.  Oh, Canada!

  • Lisa Sladkus

    The Upper West Side Streets Renaissance and T.A.’s Bicycle Ambassadors will be out in the park doing outreach to ALL park users on September 8th from 4:30-7:30PM.  We’ll also be out there the following week during one of the morning commutes.  

  • Anonymous

    For all the criticisms of the sign (font, color, tone) let’s keep this in perspective.  

    We are legally being permitted to ride on a sidewalk path.  This. Never.  Happens.  

    I’d gladly accept a stern looking sign so long as we’re able to use the sidewalk path to cut through. 

    And to be honest, the sign has to be stern.  Ped’s are giving way for bikers (even if we must yield).  Bikes on sidewalks are a very contentious issue.   I presume when they set forth the cross-cuts for bikes in Central Park, you’ll also see similiarly stern language, which is fine by me.  

  • Anonymous

    For all the criticisms of the sign (font, color, tone) let’s keep this in perspective.  

    We are legally being permitted to ride on a sidewalk path.  This. Never.  Happens.  

    I’d gladly accept a stern looking sign so long as we’re able to use the sidewalk path to cut through. 

    And to be honest, the sign has to be stern.  Ped’s are giving way for bikers (even if we must yield).  Bikes on sidewalks are a very contentious issue.   I presume when they set forth the cross-cuts for bikes in Central Park, you’ll also see similiarly stern language, which is fine by me.  

  • It is really necessary for both bikers and pedestrians to be more careful.But”Go Slowly”! sounds better!

  • It is really necessary for both bikers and pedestrians to be more careful.But”Go Slowly”! sounds better!

  • Eli

    I avoid the whole issue by using the boat basin’s driveway at 79th St to access the Hudson River Greenway when I go that way. I hate mixing up with pedestrians, they’re too unpredictable. Motorists are much easier to deal with, really!

  • Eli

    I avoid the whole issue by using the boat basin’s driveway at 79th St to access the Hudson River Greenway when I go that way. I hate mixing up with pedestrians, they’re too unpredictable. Motorists are much easier to deal with, really!

  • Eli

    I avoid the whole issue by using the boat basin’s driveway at 79th St to access the Hudson River Greenway when I go that way. I hate mixing up with pedestrians, they’re too unpredictable. Motorists are much easier to deal with, really!

  • Eli

    I avoid the whole issue by using the boat basin’s driveway at 79th St to access the Hudson River Greenway when I go that way. I hate mixing up with pedestrians, they’re too unpredictable. Motorists are much easier to deal with, really!

  • Eli

    I avoid the whole issue by using the boat basin’s driveway at 79th St to access the Hudson River Greenway when I go that way. I hate mixing up with pedestrians, they’re too unpredictable. Motorists are much easier to deal with, really!

  • Eli

    I avoid the whole issue by using the boat basin’s driveway at 79th St to access the Hudson River Greenway when I go that way. I hate mixing up with pedestrians, they’re too unpredictable. Motorists are much easier to deal with, really!

  • Eli

    I avoid the whole issue by using the boat basin’s driveway at 79th St to access the Hudson River Greenway when I go that way. I hate mixing up with pedestrians, they’re too unpredictable. Motorists are much easier to deal with, really!

  • cmu

    >”…the impression that [peds] can do anything, and gives the impression that bicyclists must react to all pedestrian movement.”
    Duh. Yes. Cyclists must be aware of and avoid peds. Peds are by definition “unpredictable”, particularly children, dogs and sightseers (in a park! who’d’ve thunk!)

    Also, daphna says “…perpetrate the misperception that cyclists are dangerous and need to be slowed down for safety”… yes, too many cyclists travel way too fast and tend to yell things like ‘on your left!” as if that justifies their behavior. If cyclists (and I am a regular one) were respectful, signs would not be necessary.

  • M-W editor explains/defends the flat adverb, including “Go slow”:

    (This vid happened to cycle up as I was checking on something unrelated. Swear.)

  • Dissmount

    I was simply thrilled to see this. It just added an extra 3-4 minutes to a trip, but it was sooooooo aggravating to have to stop in front of the sign, stumble off my bike in the middle of the path so I could push it. Several times I cheated, interpreting “dismount” to mean remove my seat from the bike seat, and then coasted along on one pedal on down the hill, just so I could technically say I dismounted. That was so satisfying. Much more satisfying to be able to stay on my bike and not feel like a criminal…..

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

Happy Bike Month! Cyclists Must Dismount on Greenway, No One Knows Why

|
3/3 Closing essential, safe #bikenyc infrastructure midday NOT an option anymore, @HudsonRiverPark. #visionzero pic.twitter.com/h8uZnYrh6Q — Joanna Oltman Smith (@jooltman) May 26, 2016 Update: The Parks Department sent us this statement Thursday evening: “Ensuring the safety of all during the holiday weekend, in preparation of increased pedestrian traffic during Fleet Week, NYC Parks has posted signs […]