Today’s Headlines

  • If the State Senate Is Deadlocked 31-31, Could Cuomo Decide Which Party Gets Control? (WSJ)
  • Columbus Ave Merchants on New Bike Lane: Loss of Parking Causing Delivery Delays (DNAInfo)
  • Wal-Mart Is Back Plotting Its Invasion of NYC (Crain’s)
  • Bloomberg Calls Traffic Summons Quotas an Aberration, Says Kelly Will Look Into It (News)
  • Marketplace Takes a Look at Congestion Pricing for Highways
  • Bloomberg Talks Up Congestion Pricing, BRT in Climate Address to Big-Time Mayors (Transpo Nation)
  • Should the MTA Board Be Elected? Cap’n Transit: No Way
  • Truck Traffic Fix on Columbia Street: Residents Get Beer Distributor to Use BQE Instead (Bklyn Paper)
  • SUV Flips Onto Sidewalk in Woodhaven Crash (Post)
  • Reverse Road Diet in Jersey City: Sidewalks Narrowed to Make Way for Cars (Jersey Journal via @TSTC)
  • Philly’s Reconstructed South Street Bridge Re-Opened as a More Complete Street (Inquirer)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • Would that Woodhaven crash have happened if there were a busway in the middle of the boulevard?

  • Glenn

    Ok, I’ll bite Captain. NYC currently get royally screwed by the policies and funding formulas by the regional MTA which favors suburban commuter rail over NYCTA bus and subways. If NYC voters were in the driver’s seat, I can’t imagine how that would stay the same. Most of your post is just a rant against democracy.

    I don’t disagree with making the governor or mayor more directly accountable (ala going from Board to Department of Education), but first, I think the MTA needs to be broken down into smaller units so there’s more a sense of local ownership. Then we can think of how to make it more accountable to local voters. As it stands now, the MTA covers too big of a geographical area and across state lines to fully democratize.

  • Ian Turner

    So, Jersey’s going on a road binge?

  • The more I read about objections to the new protected lanes, the closer I think we’re getting to a time when DOT might serious consider “my” bike lane design.

    I don’t dismiss all these locals’ objections out of hand. In other neighborhoods’ papers and blogs there are many, many articles that are almost identical to today’s DNAInfo piece (I even rebutted one with a letter to my local print-only “Town and Village”) and sure, I do think some of the merchants quoted are simply making up numbers about how much business they’ve lost, but some of their and others’ objections do raise legitimate questions about the lanes’ design, vis a vis safety, parking, deliveries, and who should have priority on parts of road space, and at what time of day.

    One thing I don’t like about the new protected lanes on my stretch of 1st and 2nd Aves and, I suspect, Columbus Ave., is that they stagger between segregating and calming, particularly in places like the left-turn “mixing zones.” Segregate bikes from cars, and drivers don’t expect to see bikes up close–but then, bam: mixing zone! where cyclists pretty much have to dance around stopping and starting cars whose drivers are looking at their turn path, not for bikes.

    My design is definitely more on the “calming” side of Trasnport for London guidelines linked to above, even though on the avenues where I recommend it, the TfL guidelines would call for “segregating” (because of 85%ile speeds there). But each approach has benefits, and calming helps by getting city motorists more accustomed to cyclists.

    I think my design addresses almost all of the objections I’ve heard to NYC’s new protected lanes, and at the same time gives cyclists their own designated space and greater visibility. Please comment on it at its Flickr page (where I really ought to update the rambling explanatory text…):

  • Marco

    Love the creativity ddartley, but I’m sure that in NYC, that center lane would just become a car lane, and cyclists standing at a green light waiting to make a turn would just get clobbered.

    I actually don’t think that Columbus is that far off from ideal. With a couple of daylighting improvements and loading areas, I think we’re all set.

  • Marco, I recognize that turning cyclists’ having to wait in the middle of an avenue at a *green* light is most off-putting part of the design. For that to work, the lane would really have to be kept mostly clear of traveling cars, and I understand that it’s hard for people to imagine that working. But I think it would work, because, if you look at the new SBS lanes on 1st and 2nd Aves, you’ll see that cars really do mostly keep out of them, even though they’re not off on the edge of the road. In my design, the bike/fire lanes would look very similar to SBS lanes.

    Furthermore, if you think of all the myriad infringements that cars inflict on bike lanes–even the lousy old Class 2, plain white stripe lanes–the infringement that you rarely saw was plain old DRIVING in them for any real distance.

  • Larry Littlefield

    I for one would like to see Park Avenue get the bike boulevard treatment, with lights timed for 15 mph and bollards at intervals to prevent non-bikes from going through.

    Local traffic would still be present, and prevent the pedestrians and parkers from simply occupying the lanes.