A Bike Lane Fight Grows in Brooklyn

08Jan09

Let’s talk about this issue that has been plaguing the streets of Brooklyn for sometime now…particularly the street of Kent Ave. in Williamsburg. The Hasidic community is complaining that they have nowhere to part their giant minivans because of the new installation. First they threatened to block the streets. Then they put this detour sign up stating “bus drivers will be blocking the road and the bike lane when picking up and dropping off children.”

All in the name of removing the bike lane. WTF?  Bike lanes make neighborhoods more habitable and safe for communities! Because of all the commotion, the DOT has now replaced the no stopping signs with no standing signs and bike lane advocates continue to insist that this is a much needed growth in New York City. DOT spokesman Scot Gastel spoke to the Gothamist.

The lanes enhance safety in a neighborhood with one of the largest and fastest-growing bicycling populations in the City, and they are a key step in building the Greenway along the Brooklyn waterfront. The project was developed with the support of the community board, and we have worked closely with the community to address their concerns. We will continue to identify locations to increase parking along side streets in the near future.

I know it is hard to acknowledge that regardless of the bike lane, parking will continue to become a problem as population grows in NYC. However the bike lane actually helps move us forward by encouraging alternate methods of transportation. I do sense that there is a bit of a class war going on here between the old guard of the neighborhood and the new hipster gentrifiers and unfortunately – though it’s not so bad in this case – we know who always wins.

[via The Gothamist]

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5 Responses to “A Bike Lane Fight Grows in Brooklyn”

  1. 1 ChipSeal

    You may be able to rally support to your cause by emphasizing that the removal of parking spaces changes them from a city subsidy of private parking on the public street to space available for another special interest group: bicyclists.

    Better still would be to remove on street parking, make another travel lane and allow cyclists to act like drivers of vehicles. Then that public space can be used by all of the traveling public.

  2. i left the city to be on tour across the country for about six months, bikeless i might add. upon my return i noticed that there were A LOT more bike lanes and it’s really really awesome. i was really excited about the wythe lane in particular. it’s really obnoxious to get from points north in brooklyn to park slope and the like, and the wythe lane helps make things a little less hectic for sure. the neighborhood in question would be a tricky ride at times. i almost got hit a few times on a bike [and even a vespa] because of drivers not acknowledging my right of way/existence, so even though it may be to the dismay of part of the community hopefully it helps raise awareness of smaller vehicles on the road and makes the streets a bit safer!

    :: smo :: [tommyrocket from twitter!]

  3. 3 brooklynbybike

    hey thanks for the comment! i love that lane as well considering i reside near park slope and often travel to williamsburg.


  1. 1 This bike lane is mine, God gave this lane to me « BikingInLA
  2. 2 Bike Lane Troubles « Its allright to feel inhuman.

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