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Manhattan Community Board 6 Committee Endorses Crosstown Protected Bike Lanes

DOT plans to add a five-foot protected bike lane with a two-foot buffer on most blocks of 26th and 29th streets. Image: DOT

Last night the Manhattan Community Board 6 transportation committee endorsed DOT's plan for protected bike lanes on 26th Street and 29th Street. It's the second community board committee to vote for the project of the three community districts along the project route.

The DOT redesign calls for a parking-protected bike lane on most blocks of 26th and 29th, with variations depending on width [PDF]. There are currently no on-street, crosstown protected bike routes between Chinatown and Upper Manhattan, and the free-for-all poses a big risk for people on bikes. Charter bus drivers killed two people biking on 26th and 29th streets last year.

More than 30 people turned out to support the project, with about 15 speaking on the record, according Transportation Alternatives Manhattan organizer Chelsea Yamada.

Newly-elected City Council members Keith Powers and Carlina Rivera also wrote to CB 6 to support the plan, Yamada said.

The CB 4 transportation committee unanimously endorsed the redesign on January 17. Last week, the CB 5 transportation committee tabled a vote.

While some project opponents -- like TV production studio owner Eric Duke -- came to the CB 5 meeting, Yamada says the committee's decision to delay a vote wasn't a reflection of where members stand on the project. The committee just ran out of time to consider everything on the docket that night.

"Unfortunately, what we saw last week at CB 5 was an overly-packed agenda which disallowed any discussion by either the board or the public," she told Streetsblog. "There was a show of hands, but it wasn’t due process for what the city had put forth."

CB 5 has yet to determine whether it will revisit the project this month or next, according to Yamada.

DOT has said implementation is scheduled for the spring or summer.

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