Today’s Headlines

  • Re: Delancey Street Needs a Better Bike Approach to Williamsburg Bridge

    “Another well-traveled cycle route — the nation’s most heavily used, in fact — is the Hudson River bikeway, running mostly physically protected and mostly uninterrupted from Lower Manhattan to the Upper West Side.”

    It runs all the way to Dyckman (200th) Street. Isn’t it funny how even local reporters forget that half of Manhattan is situated above 96th Street?

  • Re: As Gas Prices Drop, Drivers Revert to Old Habits

    The problem is that driving less due to high gas prices, in environments where there are few meaningful transportation alternatives (at best, a limited bus service), becomes simply an exercise in sacrifice and privation, to be abandoned the moment gas becomes affordable again. To permanently change the ways people get around and reduce the number of cars on the road, we need a massive investment of resources in mass transit and bicycling infrastructure–in other words, a carrot to support the stick of making driving more expensive and less convenient (through gas taxes, traffic calming, pedestrianization, elimination of free parking, etc.).

  • rlb

    A major reason that there are no bike lanes on Delancey to date is the lack of street space. Four lanes each direction on the bridge – four lanes each direction on Delancey. This problem will continue to stare down advocates of a protected bike lane.
    An under discussed solution is an elevated bike route over Delancey’s median to transport bikers a few intersections further in. It could come back to street level at Allen where Bikers could link in with the bike paths there.
    At the base of the bridge coming from Brooklyn, Bikers would have the option to cross Delancey at Clinton, or ramp up onto the elevated bike route. Not too much to ask for the premier bike bridge crossing in the city?

  • mike

    Re: bike lane on Delancey: Or, we could pass congestion pricing, reducing motor vehicle traffic on the bridge and eliminating the “need” for a couple car lanes. But this is a heavy left, of course.

  • “A major reason that there are no bike lanes on Delancey to date is the lack of street space. Four lanes each direction on the bridge – four lanes each direction on Delancey. This problem will continue to stare down advocates of a protected bike lane.”

    Well, an obvious question to ask is, do eight lanes worth of road space need to be allocated to motor vehicle traffic on Delancey Street and the Williamsburg Bridge? Can we take away a few lanes to support other means of transport (e.g., bicycles) and public/green spaces?

  • Boris

    rlb,

    The Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge is 6 lanes in each direction going down to 3 on the Staten Island side and 4 on the Brooklyn side. Despite this fundamental unfairness, according to you, they still charge $10 to cross it. “Number of lanes on bridge = number of street lanes” is an exception rather than rule. Often, even if technically the number of lanes is equal, there is unequal access and the congestion resulting from it (for example, the Brooklyn Bridge BQE exit ramp).

    I think the most obvious and important thing that should be done with Delancey is a BRT or light-rail line to Brooklyn. Williamsburg is vastly underserved by the subway system and I don’t think we should expect a new subway line there in the future. A 9th Avenue-style bike lane would also be nice.

  • The financial crisis is almost certainly going to put the MTA in a huge bind. will it be able leverage its budget in such a way that doesn’t sacrifice service? How will it do that without forcing the cancellation of the Second Avenue Subway? Read more at the transport politic.

  • rlb

    I don’t recall referring to anything as fundamentally unfair. I’m talking about a status quo situation with an obvious defense, regardless of benefits in one direction or another. The DOT’s been pretty aggressive about putting in bike lanes. They probably consider the Williamsburg Bridge/Delancey st. situation among their biggest problems.
    Why haven’t they been able to solve it?
    Because removing car lanes is hard enough when they’re empty. Here they are totally packed all the time.
    Hence the elevated bike-way.

  • There’s a median on Delancey that looks to be at least 10 feet wide. How about turning that into a two-way bike path?

  • PaulCJr

    People never learn. Gas prices will rise quickly again if people start going back to their old driving habits. The main problem that most Americans don’t understand is that worlds oil supply isn’t has abundant as it was 20 or 50 years ago. Gas prices will rise and probably exceed the last price spike if we go back to our old ways.

    -Paul

  • Now that its getting colder, it is once again common to see motorists idling their parked SUVs to keep warm while they wait to pick someone up, talk on the phone, read the paper, wait for alternate side parking to end, etc. I can’t say that the spike in gas prices over the summer has made any dent in this practice compared to what I saw last year.