Lower Manhattan Greenway Detour Set Until Spring

detour2.jpgHudson River Greenway traffic will be rerouted between Chambers Street and West Thames Street. Image: DOT

From the DOT cycling newsletter:

this month, the Route 9 greenway on Manhattan’s West Side will be
temporarily shifted west between Chambers Street and West Thames Street
along River Terrace, the World Financial Center Esplanade and South End

Along the provisional route, cyclists should be prepared
to yield to pedestrians and share the lane with cars at certain
junctures. Please ride slowly and with caution through this area!

The bike route adjustment will be in place through early
Spring 2010 and is due to construction projects in Battery Park City.
Detour and safety signage will be visibly posted along the route. A map
of the detour is available here.

If you take this route, let us know how it’s working out.

  • J

    This sucks, given that all 6 vehicle lanes are maintained throughout the massive construction project.

    In any case, you’re legally allowed to ride along the BPC esplanade hugging the shore, if you want. It shouldn’t be too crowded in the winter.

  • This “news” is really just about making a de facto Greenway detour official. For at least the past one and a half years (when I started riding on the Greenway), I have been riding that stretch on the BPC esplanade, which is not only more scenic but also doesn’t require, unlike the official Greenway route, stopping every other block to dismount and walk my bike due to construction.

    I secound J’s comment–why was it so important to maintain all 6 vehicle lanes while poaching space from pedestrians and bicyclists?

  • NattyB


    I stopped taking this route sooo long ago. Because, as URBANIS noted, the Official Greenway, had you getting on and off every block, and sharing sidewalk with important people in suits.

    Now, I just get on/off at Chambers and take Broadway/Church in/out of downtown.

    What I’d actually like, are more northern bound egressess out of the financial district.

    It seems like there are only 2 or 3 ways out: Church/West-side and Water to St James Pl to Bowery.

    Though, I guess that isn’t too bad. Because you’re either coming out at Church/West Side Greenway/6th Ave, or bowery/3rd, and you can always go east from St. James towards Christie or Essex.

  • I don’t don’t understand why they came out with this zig-zag route when riding on the esplanade, right alongside the Hudson, is so much easier.

  • JB

    This is at least the most sensible of the detour attempts they’ve made for this stretch of the greenway so far. (I’ve been riding it for a little over a year now, and quickly learned that following the signs has meant getting off your bike and walking for at least 3 blocks under any of the configurations to-date.)

    That said, the esplanade will be fine for the winter when there are a lot fewer people on it, but come warm weather, it’s pretty challenging to navigate through the throngs. Sadly, there is a serious lack of reasonably safe entrance and exit routes for the financial district, so alternatives are lacking.

  • BPC resident

    It is so obnoxious for adult bikers to ride on the promenade, ignoring the signs to dismount. It is crowded with pedestrians! Nobody will care in the winter, but please don’t be so selfish come spring..

  • MrManhattan

    Not bike related, but seeing that aerial shot immediately sent me back to the fall of ’79, MUSE concert. No buildings, just 200,000 people and the coolest day of music I ever experienced. Shame they had to put all that stuff there, with the Trade Centers to the East and the Hudson to the West it made for one hell of a concert venue.

  • BicyclesOnly

    Can someone who has looked at all the signage and considered the question carefully say whether bicycling along the Hudson esplanade at BPC is legal or not? I don’t ride down there often enough to be able to investigate it myself.

  • This is just another sad example of the auto-centric mindset: full vehicular access is maintained, almost unimpeded (6 full lanes of traffic!) while pedestrians and bicyclists are kicked out of their allocated space and forced to fight over the remaining crumbs.

  • Kaja

    Just get in the West Side Highway, and take your lane. It’s never very fast down there.

  • flp

    hey guys, if you twitter, consider posting helpful updates on greenway conditions via #WsideGway or @W_SideGwyReport. needless to add, you may also follow to see what’s going on: http://twitter.com/W_SideGwyReport

  • @BPC resident: I’ve been riding the Battery Park Esplanade for the past five years and have never seen any signage forbidding bikes from the lower esplanade- not even when the Tribeca Film Festival sets up chairs for free viewings. Bikes and skaters are banned from the upper level of the esplanade which is not surprising since it has steps.

  • Just to expand on my previous post. The Battery Park City Authority was very specific when they designated recreational space in the Master Plan. The area is sprinkled with signage explaining how such space is to be used. For example, Dog Free lawns are clearly labeled as such. Cycling and skating is permitted on the lower level of the Battery Park City Esplanade but there are signs asking cyclists to yield to pedestrians and bear to the right in certain areas, such as along the steps just north of North Cove. There are also signs indicating cycling is not permitted on the upper level of the esplanade which has steps in some areas.

    The Battery Park City Esplanade also appears on the New York City Cycling Map as part of the Manhattan Waterfront Greenway. There are a limited number bicycle racks near the ferry terminal.

    By comparison, I used to also ride along the river just north of Stuyvesant HS where the old West Street bike lane was striped. Since this area has been redeveloped and integrated into the Hudson River Park, signs stating that cyclists must dismount have been installed and PEP officers have actively prevented cyclists from riding along the piers between Stuyvesant HS and Pier 40.

  • BicyclesOnly

    Thanks, Stacy–very clear!

    Kaja, your point is well taken, though Route 9 is prohibited to bikes only by practice not by law. “West Street” is not one of the restricted-access highways on which biking is prohibited, though through force of habit and for descriptive accuracy people call it a “highway,” and often assume it is one.

  • So can I still take the Greenway to Warren St to the bridge?

  • BPC resident

    BTW at the CB1 meeting last night it was announced that due to construction Chambers Street will become one way (westbound) for two years, and possibly permanently. I wondered if this might make a true bike lane from the Bridge to the HR Greenway possible..

  • BPC, did they say why westbound? Eastbound traffic has always seemed heavier to me.

  • BPC resident

    It all has to do with the construction and a water main project.

  • patient cyclist

    The detour is still there. Is Streetsblog following up to see how much longer it will last?

  • JBS

    May of 2015: the detour is still in place with no end in sight.


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