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Canarsie Set to Get On-Street Bike/Ped Connection to Jamaica Bay Greenway

4:26 PM EDT on May 11, 2015

The proposed bikeway (in red) joins a lane installed last year on Paerdegat Avenue North. Map: DOT
The proposed 1.75-mile biking and walking path (in red) will connect to the Jamaica Bay Greenway. Map: DOT
The proposed bikeway (in red) joins a lane installed last year on Paerdegat Avenue North. Map: DOT

DOT has proposed a 1.75-mile on-street biking and walking path from Flatlands Avenue to the Jamaica Bay Greenway [PDF]. The plan received the support of Brooklyn Community Board 18, which had rejected bike lanes proposed for other streets in the neighborhood.

The project route follows Shore Parkway, E. 102nd Street, Seaview Avenue, and E. 108th Street, which border Canarsie Park and Fresh Creek Nature Preserve. It would function as a protected path for both biking and walking on streets that currently lack sidewalks along park edges. To create a safe bike connection to the Jamaica Bay Greenway and Canarsie Pier, Jersey barriers will be added along the northern edge of Canarsie Circle. The multi-lane rotary will also get a road diet and high-visibility crosswalks, improving safety for the 16,000 visitors who get to Canarsie Pier by walking or biking each year.

To making room for the path, eastbound Seaview Avenue will be trimmed from three lanes to two between E. 102nd and E. 108th Streets. Car parking will be removed from E. 102nd Street but will be added to Seaview, resulting in a net addition of approximately five parking spaces, plus a new bus stop island. The northbound traffic lane on E. 108th Street will also be eliminated.

Community Board 18 voted to support the project at its meeting on April 15, according to DOT. The agency expects to install it early this summer.

Last year, a similar project was installed on Paerdegat Avenue North. Running one mile between Seaview Avenue and Flatlands Avenue, the redesign narrowed the street from two lanes to one in a bid to reduce speeding and provide a safe space for walking and cycling [PDF]. While that bikeway connects to Canarsie Park, it does not reach all the way to Canarsie Pier and the Jamaica Bay Greenway. A Parks Department project to build a greenway connection through Canarsie Park is set to wrap in October.

DOT suggested in its presentation that the greenway connector could set the stage for future park improvement projects outlined in the New York Rising storm reconstruction plan that would provide dedicated space for biking and walking:

The plan envisions long-term changes to build out a protected bikeway and sidewalk in more than just paint. Image: DOT [PDF]
A proposed capital project would turn the shared bike/ped path into separate routes for biking and walking. Image: DOT [PDF]
The plan envisions long-term changes to build out a protected bikeway and sidewalk in more than just paint. Image: DOT [PDF]

Five years ago, CB 18 rejected a DOT plan for bike lanes on E. 94th and E. 95th Streets, which would have provided a more direct but less protected connection between East Flatbush and Canarsie Pier. DOT eventually dropped the idea, and the board requested other options. The greenway connectors that DOT is now building with CB 18 approval run along the edges of the neighborhood, instead of through the middle.

The current proposal follows years of planning and community workshops about improving the Jamaica Bay Greenway. The workshops continue over the next month, including one in Canarsie on June 10.

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