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Wednesday’s Headlines: How Not to Build a Bike Lane Edition

12:04 AM EST on December 2, 2020

Photo: Vladimir Vince

It's our December donation drive. Your gift helps us do these kinds of important stories. So please click here.
It's our December donation drive. Your gift helps us do important stories. So please click here.

Just when we've been praising the Department of Transportation left (great job on the E.L. Grant Highway!) and right (how about that cargo bike loading zone in Tribeca!) lately, the agency takes a machete to its foot — and then puts the foot in its mouth.

It all started with this amazing tweet by Friend of (and Contributor to) Streetsblog Vladimir Vince to show off DOT handiwork on a stretch of bike lane in Bensonhurst:

https://twitter.com/mejs/status/1332751574385512454?s=20

Lots of people were confused about a stretch of bike lane — a two-way bike lane, at that! — that sends cyclists onto a sidewalk bus stop, where they would likely encounter people standing around waiting for a bus (and not necessarily looking the other way of traffic). But — sure enough! — that's exactly what the DOT wanted. In response to Vince's tweet, the agency tweeted out a link to a 24-page PDF about its design for that bike lane — a tweet that was immediately mocked by pretty much everyone on Twitter, including Second Avenue Sagas (below) and Doug Gordon.

Oddly, the agency never responded to our tweet, asking about the bus-sign pole that is literally in the middle of the bike lane (photo at the top of this post).

In other news from a slow day:

    • The big story yesterday was the failure of Congress — again — to bail out transit. Streetsblog got out of the gate fast, but amNY quickly followed. Mass Transit played it way too straight. The Washington Post buried the lede.
    • In a related story, everyone slammed the prospect of a fare hike, including Rep-elect Nicole Malliotakis (R-Staten Island), whose party bears decades worth of responsibility for starving transit and subsidizing driving (including the toll discounts that she demanded continue). (NY Post, amNY)
    • In another related story, Gothamist dug deep into the congestion pricing mess.
    • The bike boom is continuing. (NYDN)
    • The city's dangerous streets violate the civil rights of blind people. (NY Times)
    • A Staten Island pedestrian was killed by an MTA bus driver. (NY Post)
    • Meanwhile, Todd Maisel reminds us anew of the horrifying destructive power of a speeding car. (amNY)
    • Reminder: See that donation logo on the top of this page? Well, you know... (The honor roll of benefactors from yesterday: Thanks, David, Brandi, Lawrence, Sam, Austin, Stacy, Mark, Avishai, John, Tonio, Merm, Leo, Linda, Adam, Jonah, and Shaurav!).

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