Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In

Eyes on the Street: NYPD Security Theater Revival in Times Square

12:32 PM EDT on April 4, 2018

NYPD barricades are back in Times Square’s raised bike lane. Photo: Brian Van Nieuwenhoven/Twitter

The raised bike lane through Times Square was nice while it lasted. Less than two months after NYPD yanked obtrusive barricades from the four-block bike lane segment on Seventh Avenue, police have made it unrideable again.

The raised bike lane on Seventh Avenue between 46th Street and 42nd Street was completed in late 2016, part of the capital construction project for Times Square plazas that took the city several years to build. Just five months later, NYPD closed it off with metal fencing and concrete barriers following a fatal vehicular attack at one of the plazas. The bike lane was rendered obsolete:

Is this really the most sensible solution?

After the West Side Greenway attack last October, NYPD escalated its Midtown security theater. While some fencing in the bike lane disappeared, much of it remained obstructed through the end of 2017.

Then in February, NYPD finally moved its barriers to avoid blocking the bike lane. It was still useless security theater taking up space on the sidewalk, but at least the right of way for bicycling was clear. Police finally cleared the entire stretch, placing new barricade along the sidewalk, out of the way of the bike lane.

NYPD's brief flirtation with reason was fleeting, apparently. Brian Van Nieuwenhoven shared the top photo on Twitter, showing the barricades back in the bike lane on Saturday. And just like that, with no warning or explanation, police have wiped out a key connection in the city's bike network.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Bus Advocates Target Anti-Busway ‘Hypocrites’ at Bronx Zoo and Botanical Garden

A petition drive by Bronx bus riders calls out the institutions for boosting transit on their websites, but then trying to undermine it in the real world.

June 9, 2023

‘Duped’: A Harlem 20-Something Blows the Whistle on an Illegal Temporary License Plate Business

Kareem found out the hard way that his Craigslist gig delivering temp tags was illegal. Now he's exposing the operation that employed him, revealing clues about his anonymous bosses that all trace back to the same place.

June 9, 2023

Day 3: These Hunger Strikers aren’t Paid Lobbyists — But Albany Can’t Tell the Difference

ALBANY — “They are putting every barrier in our way to not have to face us directly and  look us in the eye and then make an unconscionable decision. This is Albany at its worst,” said Amy Cohen. 

June 8, 2023

Manhattan Pol Wants OMNY to Work With Citi Bike

Citi Bike could become even more popular if the MTA figured out a way to integrate it with the OMNY pay system.

June 8, 2023
See all posts