Today’s Headlines

  • David Byrne: Bike-share Will Rearrange Your Mental Map of NYC (NYT)
  • East Brooklyn Seniors Want to Cross Their Streets Without Risking Their Lives (News)
  • How the Senate Transpo Bill Would Benefit Transit in the NYC Region (MTR)
  • Cabbie Strikes Cyclist Near Union Square, Causing Head Lacerations (Gothamist)
  • In Separate Incidents, Drivers Seriously Injure Two Cyclists Saturday Evening (Gothamist)
  • Mother of Union Square Hit-and-Run Victim Roxana Sorina Buta Pleas for Justice (Post)
  • Sensible Analysis From Bay Ridge Journal About Traffic Dangers Near Site of Hit-and Run Killing
  • Federal Safety Regs Force MTA to Put Off Commuter Rail Upgrades (Post, 2nd Ave Sagas)
  • One More Reason to Apply “Broken Windows” Theory to Traffic Enforcement (Post)
  • Waiting for #BikeNYC’s Breakthrough Smartphone App (NYT)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • Anonymous

    Saturday morning I came across the still-steaming aftermath of a single vehicle crash on East 42nd in Manhattan:  http://www.flickr.com/photos/10798592@N08/7294685828/in/photostream

  • Albert

    It’s a shame that David Byrne’s otherwise excellent op-ed neglects to mention bike-share’s $95-per-year / unlimited-45-min-free-rides pricing for regular users (users like him).  All that got printed is the less-economical daily rate for visitors (“just under $10 for a day’s rental…unlimited rides…under
    30 minutes”).

    It’s truly amazing how no one seems to be able to describe correctly how truly cost-effective NYC bike-share will be.

  • Anonymous

    Does anyone know what happened to the bike lane on 8th Ave (in Manhattan) north of 42nd Street?  I haven’t ridden that way in a bit and when I did today I was very surprised to see it missing.  Should I start putting Lost and Reward posters up?

  • Eric McClure

    Wow! “Seniors for Safety” who aren’t just an anti-bike lane NIMBY front.  Hope NYC takes their recommendations on board pronto.

  • Mike

    scofflaw: it’s being replaced with a protected lane.

  • I kind of like 8th Avenue the way I found it today — the future parking lane serves as a very large bike lane with very few drivers in it (at least during the morning commute).

  • Anonymous

    Thanks Mike.  When I rode up 8th, there were nothing but double parked cars in it.   It took me a few blocks to even realize it was gone because I couldn’t see enough of the pavement to tell if there were still lines painted there or not.  Do you know if they’re planning on doing anything with the taxi loading area right in front of Port Authority?  Those couple of blocks where the bike lane disappears and the loading zone begins are harrowing.

  • Ben Kintisch

    It takes forever to do, but if you scroll through all 200 plus comments on the David Byrne piece (an excellent essay, if I dare say…) you get a glimpse of a huge range of where thinking people are on bike share and cycling in general – from “I can’t wait” to “run for the hills!” Even though many of us who read and post on this blog are fans of bike share, and find ourselves cheering on its arrival, it is useful as I think Mr. Sun Tzu said, to “Know your enemy.” Maybe the word ‘enemy’ is a bit over-wrought, but as much as I wish more folks agreed with me, the first step to changing their mind is to understand the nature of their disagreement in the “battle” of ideas. And unlike the hate-filled screeds you often find in the comments sections of the News and the Post, the Times comments were, for the most part, reasoned (again, even if I disagreed.)

  • Ben Kintisch

    I just posted this to the Daily News Website:
    I commend the efforts of these brave seniors for standing up for safety. Our most vulnerable street users are senior citizens and children, both of whom die needlessly at the hands of dangerous drivers. Congratulations to these brave men and women for insisting on a safer community for themselves and their loved ones.Read more: http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/brooklyn/east-brooklyn-senior-citizens-calling-city-officials-intersections-safer-cross-article-1.1085341#ixzz1wHrXATMB

  • Joe R.

    @Ben_Kintisch:disqus I did read through all the comments on the David Bryne piece. Keeping with  your “know your enemy” theme, I found two overriding themes being used by those against bike share. The most prevalent was the complaint about cyclists not following traffic laws. The second was concern about lack of helmets.

    Easy enough to address the second concern. Helmet use isn’t particularly prevalent in the great biking nations, and yet cycling in those places is very safe. This tells me helmets largely aren’t necessary. Some of the commentators mention that helmets are needed in NYC because of heavy motor traffic. I could counter this by saying that helmets are useless in bike-motor vehicle collisions. In any case, little doubt most bike share riders will be helmetless. When we see that this doesn’t result in carnage, perhaps the vocal pro-helmet crowd will go away.

    The first concern is a little more difficult to address because there are shades of gray here. Sure, some types of illegal cycling behavior, such as wrong way riding, are nearly always dangerous and really can’t be justified (except perhaps among delivery people looking to save a little time). As for the other types of behavior, it remains incumbent upon those of us who ride to explain why we might do technically illegal things in the interests of safety and/or efficiency. At the same time though, we must remain solidly against riding in a manner which puts pedestrians at risk. This includes things like riding fast on sidewalks (really, you shouldn’t be on sidewalks at all unless the road is unsafe for cycling), or passing red lights at speed when people are in the crosswalk. In other words, be predictable and at least follow the spirit of the law. Those two things alone would probably silence most of the critics on the other side. I pass red lights all the time (only after looking and yielding right-of-way to cross traffic) but I get vehemently annoyed seeing cyclists who fly through lights without even a cursory glance. Two commentators summed it up best:

    “Motorists complain about cyclists not obeying traffic laws. Cyclists complain that the laws are not written by anyone who has even seen a bicycle. How do we fix this? Easy. In Maritime law human power has right of way over sail and sail has R.O.W. over motors. For bikes, a stop sign should be a yield and a stop light should be a stop sign. The difference between cars and bikes should drive the laws, not trying to force bikes to follow car laws.”

    “I do run lights. To not do so would render the ride scarcely worth it from a time and fitness perspective. I will eventually get caught and I will pay my fine. I have never had a close call of almost striking a pedestrian and I often chastise other bikers who are rude and self-centered.

    I do often stop at a red light as though it was a stop sign and I could live with this compromise. There is very, very rarely a time that I go through a light that there are not also parallel jaywalkers doing the same, many times with a stroller!”

  • Mike

    scofflaw: here’s the DOT plan for 8th Ave. http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/201109_8th_9th_cb4_slides.pdf  The part in front of the port authority still looks dubious.  (p. 24 of the PDF)

  • “Zipcar will never be successful because of the prevalence of motor vehicle drivers running red lights, speeding and failing to yield in the crosswalk.”

    Also, Joe R., can you cite the law prohibiting “wrong-way” cylcling? I couldn’t find it.

  • Joe R.

    @yahoo-QW53WEE5EBQ6AJ2KPU33D2NU74:disqus The applicable provision is NYS § 1234:
     – Riding on roadways, shoulders, bicycle lanes and bicycle paths• Must ride bicycle on the right side of the roadway (some conditions and exceptions apply*) • No more than two abreast.

    *Cyclists may use either side of a 40-foot wide or wider one-way roadway

  • Driver

    Asymptote,
    § 4-02 (a) – Compliance with and Effect of Traffic Rules
    The provisions of N.Y.C. Traffic Rules are applicable to bicycles and their operators.

    http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/downloads/pdf/bicyclerules_fy08_english.pdf

  • Joe R. 1234 doesn’t apply in NYC.

    Driver, I see, thanks.

  • Ian Turner

    Today (Wednesday, May 30), an MTA employee advised me that there would be a bicycle ticket blitz today. I have no opinion on the reliability of this information, but I thought I would pass it along.

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