A Brooklyn bike lane scuttled during last winter’s anti-bike frenzy is back on the agenda thanks to some intrepid citizen activism. More than 1,400 people have signed a petition to paint a bike lane on Lafayette Avenue, reports the New York Times’ The Local blog, and the local community board will be revisiting the issue this coming Tuesday.
Right now, there isn’t a great eastbound bike route through the area. A bike lane runs on Lafayette for a few blocks from Flatbush Avenue to Fulton Street, while another eastbound route runs on Willoughby Avenue, five blocks north of Lafayette. The Lafayette lane would serve as a matched pair to the existing westbound lane on DeKalb Avenue. Another benefit of the bike lane would be traffic calming; the proposed design would remove one of two motor vehicle lanes.
Supporters are hoping to extend the Lafayette lane a full 2.7 miles to Broadway, but The Local reports that a compromise might extend the lane only five blocks in order to connect riders crossing Flatbush to the northbound Carlton Avenue lane, where they could zigzag up to Willoughby.
Despite the show of public support for the lane, the debate Tuesday evening is sure to be contentious, given the project’s history. While Community Board 2 never formally voted the bike lane down, the Department of Transportation withdrew its plans to stripe the lane in the face of opposition last March.
Those interested in speaking on the issue should attend the meeting of CB 2’s transportation committee Tuesday night at 6:00 p.m, held at St. Francis College, 180 Remsen Street.