Friday, May 3, 2019

The 12th Street bike lane will return

An EVG reader reports that workers tore up 12th Street last night ... the reader, who sent the above photo, noted this between Avenue B and First Avenue. Gone for now is the bike lane that arrived back in the fall.

And we heard from other readers who were confused about what's happening here. After all, the city announced last Thursday that the 12th Street and 13th Street bike lanes would remain despite the full L-train shutdown called off by Gov. Cuomo in early January. Did the city change its mind?

Via Twitter, the DOT said the painted bike lanes will return...


Anonymous said...

At the Community Board 2 Traffic and Transportation meeting on May 2, the Dept. of Transportation provided data on the increase of bicyclists using these new bike lanes. The numbers were pretty incredible showing a doubling and tripling of bicyclists on those bike lanes and that was even when comparing summer numbers before to winter numbers now. Great news for the city and for the environment. CO2 emissions have done more to ruin the health of our planet than anything else. "Humans have increased atmospheric CO2 concentration by more than a third since the Industrial Revolution began. This is the most important long-lived "forcing" of climate change."

Anonymous said...

I don't understand why they just don't make the bike lane thinner and add parking on that side of street
26th and 27th street have this layout and it actually is better
there is a line of parked vehicles which essentially creates a barrier -

noble neolani said...

I am optimistic about the return of the bike lane to 12th Street, it was pretty strange looking out my windows and seeing it get gorge out last night. I miss my bike lane, please come back soon.

Anonymous said...

I *knew* the city & MTA were lying when they said the 12th & 13th St. bike lanes were only 'temporary' for the duration of the "L" train work. You can't rust these people.

Now to cross the street on my block, you have to watch out for vehicular traffic, plus bike traffic from BOTH directions in the bike lane, plus bike & scooter traffic from BOTH directions OUTSIDE of the bike lane - b/c there are always those who just won't use the lane that was provided for them.

This is like living in a video game where it's only a matter of time before something bad happens, given that so many of the people involved are not playing by the rules.

Two days ago I was "breezed" by a young woman on her bike (no helmet): her left hand was on the left handlebar; her right hand was holding her phone in front of her face so she could look at the screen. I watched her ride the entire length of the block as she stared at her phone the whole time. I'm sure she'd claim to be very good at "multi-tasking."

Anonymous said...

To 5:53

Before the bike lane arrived, you didn't have to watch both ways for bikes? The new bike lane has caused bike traffic from BOTH directions in addition to scooter traffic?

And when did the city say the lanes were only temporary? Can you post the article that states this?


Anonymous said...

I like that we have bike lanes but I live on 12th and got headaches from inhaling that strong toxic smelling green paint they used the first time. Everyone was complaining about it on the block. The smell was overwhelming. I wonder what is in it.

Anonymous said...

The "streets were safer before bike lanes" angle is really, really funny! Pedestrians assume that the bike lanes are sidewalks, I admit I did it once, learn pretty quickly and then look both ways before they cross the street, just like mama instructed.

Anonymous said...

Makes sense.
Let's this do this wonderfully practical thing.

Anonymous said...

@6:10pm: No, I didn't have to watch for bikes coming from TWO directions before there was a bike lane put in! Sorry if my experience of crossing the street is discomfiting to you.

As to "can you post the article that says this" about TEMPORARY lanes, yes I can:

"Three miles of temporary bike lanes installed last year on 12th and 13th Streets in Greenwich Village will also be made permanent"

That's from:

Unless, of course, you consider to be an unreliable source...

Another source:

"During several town hall hearings on the shutdown, some locals have made DOT commissioner Polly Trottenberg promise that the bike lanes are temporary, to which she has replied that she will come back to the community if DOT wants to keep them after the shutdown."

Did you notice the word "IF" in her statement? And the source for that quote is:

How much more documentation would you like?

Anonymous said...

The bike lanes and parking spots will not return. You will not be allowed to park or ride your bike, this is how the city will justify the congestion pricing.

noble neolani said...

The people complaining about the bike lanes I can only assume are car owners and they miss their "free" taxpayer subsidize parking.

To say a that the bikes lanes have made it more dangerous to cross a street is absolutely ridiculous in reality they have provided so much more visibility since one side of the street is completely free of park vehicles.

Adding a mid street parking area would narrow the street and create one blockage after the other when a taxi or car service picks up/drops off passengers, trucks make deliveries to businesses, etc... having the bike lane free from parked cars prevents car doors opening and collisions with bikes.

Another big advantage to having the bike lanes is reduced cars horns, better flowing traffic and cleaner streets. Not only can street cleaning trucks able to fully clean gutters, there is less trash left by some car owners who use our street as a place to empty the trash in their cars, I've seen this happen many times so say it never happens.

Anonymous said...

@noble neolani: You always say the same thing: "The people complaining about the bike lanes I can only assume are car owners and they miss their "free" taxpayer subsidize parking." You really ought to re-think your assumptions, b/c you are WRONG (and you'd know it if you talked to enough other people). I and many residents of my block do NOT like the bike lanes and (amazingly) not even one of us owns a car! Stuyvesant Town & Peter Cooper Village, where I do not live, but where many of my friends reside, is full of people who do not own cars yet who are terrified to cross the street where a bike lane exists.

You also say: "To say a that the bikes lanes have made it more dangerous to cross a street is absolutely ridiculous in reality they have provided so much more visibility since one side of the street is completely free of park vehicles." It seems you don't ever consider that the bike lanes are, in effect, a protected speedway for bike riders, which indeed makes it more dangerous to cross the street.

Anonymous said...

The pro-car crowd/bike-lane haters are organized, professional trolls. (Read Streetsblog and Gothamist.) Don't feed the trolls.

Anonymous said...

There are no pro-car trolls here, just life long middle class residents who have a car in order to occasionally get out of this crazy city called nyc.

Anonymous said...

@2:40pm: I am not a troll, nor am I a member of any organization that is pro-car or anti-bike. It's interesting that you see "pro-car/anti-bike" as one and the same (and as paid professionals), when that is not the case.

I am very much in favor of bike riding IF BIKE RIDERS OBEYED THE LAW while they're out there.

I am also very much in favor of my safety & well-being as a pedestrian.

Unfortunately, a large number of bike riders do not obey the law, and some riders appear show very little consideration for the law & for the safety of other people. To me, THAT is what's unfortunate. It doesn't have to be that way, but as things now stand, and short of a city-wide crackdown (which we know won't happen), each bike rider makes their own "law" unto themselves. And IMO, the aggregate behavior of bike riders is not in their favor.

Anonymous said...


You wish Bike riders OBEYED THE LAW?

From Streetsblog, citing NYPD statistics:

As of April 21, there have been 64 people killed on New York City streets, up 49 percent from the 43 who were killed over the same period last year, police statistics show. Oddly, over the same period, crashes themselves are down slightly, from 65,102 to 62,291. But even with that decrease, there are roughly 560 crashes per day in New York City.

It is unclear what conclusions can be drawn by the road carnage, but some trends stand out:

The largest number of deaths — 15 — occurred around the edges of rush hour, either between 5 and 6 a.m. or between 6 and 7 p.m.

The fatalities are, of course, occurring mostly where car ownership is at its highest. Fourteen of the deaths, for example, were in the Brooklyn South patrol area. Thirteen were in Queens North. Only 3 deaths were in Manhattan below Central Park, which has a large population, but very few car owners. Brooklyn South and Queens North also lead in overall crashes, with 10,400 and 10,271 respectively. That’s roughly 94 crashes per day in half a borough.

Drivers are entirely to blame for the deaths. According to police, 50 of the 64 fatalities, or 78 percent, were caused by the big three: driver inattentiveness, unsafe speeding or failure to yield. The remaining deaths were due to drunk driving, disregarding traffic signals, poor backing, and other causes.

If you very much favor your safety & well-being as a pedestrian, you should be more concerned about cars and trucks than bikes.

But obviously as a professional troll, you wouldn't see this.

noble neolani said...

@2:02 PM
If I sound like a broken record (ok I'm dating myself) it's because I'm speaking from experience of living and working on my block for the past 20 years and things have changed for the better on my block since the bike lanes were created. If you step off a curb without looking around you are to blame if something bad happens regardless if it is a car or bicycle in the street. I would rather be hit by bike than a car if I had to choose. Most people who ride bikes are alert and want to avoid collisions if you had ever crashed riding a bike you would know beside wearing a helmet most of your body is unprotected. If you don't have a car I can't imagine why on earth you would prefer a row of parked cars on your block instead of the 10 or so feet strip of open space from the curb to the traffic lane?
Warehousing your private property on public land which could be used by nonpolluting vehicles no longer makes sense.


You assume wrong. I don’t have a car, or even a license, and will say these bike lines have absolutely made it more dangerous to cross the street. The sheer volume of riders has dramatically increased and it’s been my experience a lot of them ignore basic safety practices. For example, stopping at red lights, riding on sidewalks, riding in the correct direction, cutting pedestrians off in crosswalks...

sophocles said...

Notorious: I cross at the corner on green lights and do not generally have close calls with cyclists. As with many New Yorkers, I used to reflexively step into the street and then look to see whose coming. That doesn't work well in bike lanes, so I force myself to wait on the curb. If you're being cautious and still having problems I can only say that's not my experience.

I agree that there are too many oblivious cyclists, and I have to restrain myself from shouting "PAY ATTENTION" every time I see someone working their phone as they cycle down the city streets, sometimes the wrong way. I wouldn't object to some ticket blitz's relating to the most dangerous behavior (simply ticketing cyclists who slow down or stop before passing a red light would be as ridiculous as ticketing pedestrians who cross on the red).

Cycling in the city has always been a controversial subject an I accept that there a reasonable differences of opinion. But cycling is a net positive and its not going away, nor should it.

Anonymous said...

Something is seriously wrong when bus routes/stops/ service is reduced (for example eliminating stops on the M14) and fares go up - yet there is an increase in support and funding for bicycles/bicycle infrastructure.

Instead of the city providing funding for bicycles, the city could earmark for mass transit support. (Yes the MTA controls bus subway and the city controls DOT, cycling infrastructure)

Not right

La vie est belle said...

When I rent a car, I'm afraid of hitting bicyclists and pedestrians who don't obey their laws/lanes. When I'm biking, I'm afraid of getting hit by a car who isn't obeying the yield laws or is aggressively driving. I'm also afraid of ignorant pedestrians stepping out into the bike lane which I might hit, then it's me who'd get thrown over the handle bars. When I'm a pedestrian, I'm afraid of both cars and bikes who aren't obeying their laws. You always have to pay attention in big cities no matter what you're doing.

However- cars have their own roadways and pedestrians have sidewalks to separate them and keep them safe. Buses even have their own lanes. So bicyclists also deserve to be protected and safe and have their own bike lanes. New Yorkers like myself often use all modes of transport. It's about protecting residents in each of these common ways.

Anonymous said...

Well said "La vie est Belle"!

We all need to be proactive about the challenges of moving about in an environment with a finite amount of space and a lot of people using various modes of transportation to get around.

ALEX said...

The bike lanes create MORE congestion. 500 + spaces are now lost to bike lanes when the city could have just left the parking and painted it on the road..Now drivers have to circle more to find parking circling and circling. You DONT NEED a dedicated bike lane on 12th 13streets! Bikers dont pay to use the roads either. Spaces needed for people who need cars and commercial drivers that need to park to do work in buildings. And people need to be dropped off in cabs but what happens the taxi driver swirves to the bike lane and blocks bikes to drop off people creating a dangerous situation. Bring back the parking on 12 and 13th NOW!!