The Grand Street Bike Lane is Under Attack

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Anonymous's picture

In November, the NYC Department of Transportation added a grand new bike lane all the way across Grand Street, from West Broadway to the FDR. It’s a solid improvement that’ll make Grand Street safer for the many cyclists who already ride there, and since it makes a nice connection to the Williamsburg Bridge and the East River Greenway, it’ll encourage even more people to ride bikes.

But, now some cranky members of Community Board 3 (East Village and Lower East Side) are demanding that the Department of Transportation remove the bike lane! They have no good reason other than they just don’t like bikes.

Community Board 3’s Transportation Committee will discuss the Grand Street bike lane on Wednesday, and we’re asking cyclists to attend the meeting and speak out in support of it. The meeting details are:

Wednesday, December 6, 6:30pm
University Settlement, Room 1
273 Bowery (and East Houston Street)

Tell the Community Board that you support the new bike lane, that it makes drivers on Grand Street more aware of cyclists and makes the street safer for biking.

Questions? Call Caroline at Transportation Alternatives: 646 873 6021

Anonymous's picture
Carol Waaser (not verified)

A follow-up email from Noah Budnick at T.A. said that the Community Board does not need a whole slew of cyclists to show up, but any well-spoken lower east side cyclists would be appreciated.

Anonymous's picture
Mordecai Silver (not verified)
Yesterday's meeting

The spokesman for the DOT said that of the three East River Bridges connecting Manhattan to Brooklyn, the Williamsburg gets by far the most bike traffic (a surprising fact). The Grand St. lane would be a connector from the bridge to the East River Greenway. Those riding west from the bridge could take Grand as far as Chrystie, where it becomes one-way going east.

The objections to the bike path were mainly about the section of Grand between East Broadway and Essex, which was formerly two-lane in each direction, but is now one-lane because of the paths on either side. That part of Grand can get very congested with cars going west from the F.D.R. Drive towards the Williamsburg Bridge.

I'm not sure that Grand is a very effective place for a bike lane. Why is Grand needed as a connector between the bridge and the East River Greenway, when Delancey, which has very little traffic between the F.D.R. and Clinton, and has an F.D.R. overpass, is already ideal as a connector? And for commuters riding west from the bridge, the bike lane shouldn't be needed east of Suffolk.

I have nothing against this bike lane, but I'm not a strong proponent of it either. As far as I know, it's the only bike lane in Manhattan on a two-way east-west street. I think it makes more sense to put bike lanes on one-way streets. For example, I like the 9th and 10th St. bike lanes, and I use them often. I don't believe there would be any objections to a bike path on Grand that ran from West Broadway to Chrystie.

Anonymous's picture
David (not verified)
Protecting cyclist before a tragic accident happens

Yes there are numerous times that we all have read of some tragedy about a cyclist being killed by a errant driver.

We get angry, the lawyers wish to sue, we become frusrated with the wild west of riding our bikes with cars.

Yet the there is three simple soulutions to improve the situation, but it takes a williness to do it. For those of you believe what I am saying is a cure all for the situation. I am not. But the itesms that I will list are doable and will not cost a arm and leg to put implement.

1. All driving schools to mandate a program of car sharing the road with a bicycle.

2.DMVs in the region, place on their written and driving tests about sharing the road with cyclists.

3. Striking a cyclist while behind the wheel is a automatic suspension of one's license for not less than 30 days.

cycling trips