Eyes on the Street: A Proper Bike Lane on Shore Boulevard

The new Shore Boulevard bike lane will soon have flexible bollards separating it from car traffic. Photo: David Meyer
The new Shore Boulevard bike lane will soon have flexible bollards separating it from car traffic. Photo: David Meyer

The new two-way bike lane on Shore Boulevard in Astoria is rounding into form and just needs some finishing touches from DOT. With the bike lane, which replaced the northbound car lane on Shore Boulevard, pedestrians and cyclists will no longer have to awkwardly share the asphalt path inside the edge of Astoria Park, and crossings between the park and the East River waterfront will be shorter.

The Shore Boulevard redesign is one of three bike lane projects in the works for the streets near the park. In addition, DOT plans to put two-way protected bike lanes on Hoyt Avenue North and 20th Avenue [PDF]. Safer pedestrian crossings on 19th Street, the park’s eastern border, are also on DOT’s agenda, the agency has said.

Since 2009, more than 100 people have been injured on the streets surrounding Astoria Park, and last year, a hit-and-run driver killed 21-year-old Betty DiBiaso at 19th Street and Ditmars Boulevard. After the fatal crash, Assembly Member Aravella Simotas called for a completely car-free Shore Boulevard, which the city rejected. The protected bike lane, coupled with new pedestrian crossings, is the middle ground, giving pedestrians and cyclists more space while reducing the motor lanes to just one lane.

The new bike lane begins at Ditmars Boulevard. Photo: David Meyer
The view looking south from Ditmars Boulevard, where the on-street bike lane connects to a waterfront path (hence the bicycle turn lane). Photo: David Meyer
Signs tell northbound drivers: Shore Boulevard is one-way now. Photo: David Meyer
The view at the southern end of the bikeway, where northbound drivers have to turn right onto Astoria Park South. Previously, people were supposed to bike on the path inside the park. Photo: David Meyer

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