Tonight: Tell DOT to Get Moving on Lifesaving Bikeways for Midtown and Sunnyside

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
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

Community boards and the public will weigh in on important bike projects in Manhattan and Queens tonight.

After failing to endorse the project earlier this year, Manhattan Community Board 5 will get another look at crosstown bike lanes.

CB 5 is the lone holdout on the pair of protected lanes planned for 26th and 29th streets. DOT initiated the project after drivers killed Dan Hanegby and Michael Mamoukakis on 26th and 29th last spring.

CB 4 and CB 6 overwhelmingly endorsed the bikeways, but CB 5 tabled a vote in February.

DOT doesn’t need the board’s approval to move this project forward, but a strong show of public support could prod the city to get it done before someone else dies in traffic.

Also, DOT will host a town hall for protected bike lanes on Skillman and 43rd avenues in Woodside and Sunnyside. Tonight’s event was requested by Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, who once supported the project but has since gotten cold feet after businesses complained about parking.

DOT usually won’t implement a street safety project without the blessing of the local council member.

Finally, Manhattan CB 4 will hear a request from the Hudson Yards Hell’s Kitchen Alliance for a protected bike lane on 10th Avenue between 30th Street and 42nd Street.

Details on tonight’s happenings below. Check the calendar for more info on these and other events.

  • Tonight: For the second time, DOT will present plans for 26th and 29th street bikeways to Manhattan CB 5. 1 Penn Plaza, 6th Floor. 6 p.m.
  • Also tonight: DOT hosts a town hall on bikeways for Skillman and 43rd avenues. Queens PS 150, 40-01 43rd Avenue, Sunnyside. 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
  • Also tonight: Manhattan CB 4 hears from the Hudson Yards Hell’s Kitchen Alliance on a protected bike lane for 10th Avenue. The Flats, 554 W. 53rd Street, Community Room. 6:30 p.m.

Watch the calendar for updates. Drop us a line if you have an event we should know about.

  • AMH

    Is either the CB4 or CB5 meeting more critical?

  • Blwndrpwrmlk

    Probably CB5 since the meeting is presented directly from NYC DOT, possibly to a committee vote. The other one sounds like just people talking.

  • For anyone who couldn’t make the Queens Sunnyside meeting about bikeways on Skillman and 43rd ave and wants to watch the insanity of random, fact-less people angrily shouting at the DOT experts the full range of NIMBY reasons for opposing bike lanes, here’s a Periscope video of the entire meeting. Huge thanks to https://twitter.com/Daniel_A_Solow for this.

    https://www.pscp.tv/w/bYlveDFZTEVKbnh5cG1WRU58MWxQSnFuWVpCT2x4YlG7-1-SxWiXR_EQSFpi9BPlAe8doSk85Xp6hObtDPuV

    Jump to 35 mins for maximum awesome and watch passionate cyclists who don’t want to die battle it out with locals who want free storage for their cars.

    Watch DOT expert Ted Wright patiently fact-check the heck out of people who literally have done zero research on every aspect of the project but feel they have expert opinions.

    Watch one guy co-opt the phrase “I call BS” from Parkland shooting survivor Emma Gonzalez, and with a straight face say it to the DOT about their tally of cars and cyclists that use the street. As if that was remotely appropriate.

    Watch a self-described “statistician” claim that the DOT count of cyclists (1400 in 1 peak hour in May last year) wasn’t accurate because he couldn’t duplicate the number in the last 4 months… because, you know, it was WINTER. Watch that guy then lose his mind.

    Watch angry locals confuse people who have an opinion (that they don’t want to get killed by cars while riding a bike) with “paid operatives who came with an agenda” because, you know, the cyclists had some signs.

    Hear passionate drivers share stories of having to circle around for an hour or 2 to find free parking. The horror! And god forbid, spending $46 for overnight parking if you can’t find a free space!

    Learn about how the NYPD geocodes car crashes to the nearest intersection by a guy who clearly does not understand that, and holds up a map of all the crashes with the dots all in the center of the streets… claiming that all these car-cyclist crashes happened in the middle of the road, not on the side (wrong) and therefore a protected bike lane wouldn’t have helped any of them (insanely wrong). Then watch the DOT shred this claim into a teachable moment about how the NYPD geocodes crashes.

    BUT, also hear from dozens of passionate, articulate, inspiring, well-researched supporters of the DOT design, who argue that safety for pedestrians, cyclists, and yes, drivers too!, is more valuable than a few parking spots. That attractive, safe bike infrastructure that gets people who’d normally drive, to actually bike (!) would mean FEWER cars on the road, and more parking.

    Enjoy!

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