Thursday, January 29, 2009

Pulaski Bridge

There's talk in T.A. Land about the Pulaski Bridge.

I propose the following:

A strong argument can and should be made to change one lane of
southbound car traffic into a bike lane. It could be done with the
simple installation of Jersey barriers.

All the roads heading in the bridge are two lanes... and the bridge itself ends as two lanes. There is simply no need (except perhaps to let cars hit 100 MPH) for the bridge to have three lanes when it serves a road with two. It is all visible on google earth.

I'm no traffic engineer, but I'm pretty certain it is more dangerous to encourage speeding and then merging than to simply have two constantly moving lanes of traffic the whole way.

Regarding the "walk you bike" sign... Can anybody dig up the exact policy? Sometimes these "policies" take on a life of their own. It is possible that the "policy," if it exists, can be met by simply placing a sign at the joints of the bridges saying "walk your bike over joint" rather than implying that the whole bridge is no biking.

But if effort is spent, I think more serious effort should be spent trying to claim a non-needed car lane as a bike lane. As it is, the current sidewalk is too narrow while being heavily used by both bikes and pedestrians.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Tribo... RFK Bridge Update

I took the RFK (nee Triborough) Bridge into Manhattan today and am pleased to report that there is major construction (well, major construction for a bike path). Without knowing for sure, it seems, to my amateur eyes, that they are in the process of removing all the stairs on the top part of the path over Hell Gate (between Astoria and Ward Island). In the meantime, there are lots of stairs.

Also, the bridge is very passable. There was snow in the morning that could be ridden over with care and by the afternoon it had all mostly melted.

The south side of the to-Harlem part of the bridge (between Manhattan and Randalls Island) is closed for almost all of 2009. North side is open.

And of course, be careful coming back in the Astoria for the bump toward the end of the downhill that once got me.

And, uh, oh yeah, don't forget it's forbidden to ride your bike on the bike path.

Van Plows Into Line of Children in Chinatown, Killing 2

"The driver of the van, identified as Chao Fu, 52, of Brooklyn, was not charged."

They never are.

Here's the story in the Times.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Queens Plaza 2009 Work Plan

Interested in Queensplaza? It's hard to imagine an Astoria biker who isn't. Want to get involved in the future of Queensplaza through Transportation Alternatives? Contact Philip.papas[at]

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Support the Kent Ave Bike Lane

Here's an easy way to send a letter to the Man.

Kent Ave, if you don't know, is the street you're always riding down on the Brooklyn Waterfront in Williamsburg. It's the street that some in the Hasidic community are trying to control.

When you get the form letter, feel free to change parts as appropriate (like I live in "Brooklyn" to "Queens"). It's not hard.

Better yet, go the community meeting tonight. More details on this on Streetsblog.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Bikes and tramplines. perfect together.

You don't have to watch all of this. I can only take so much unicycle. But if you skip right to the 3 minute point and watch for a minute, it's pretty damn cool.

From Howies (via BikeSnobNYC).

Pedestrian Peek-a-Boo

More formally known as daylighting. Getting rid of the last parked car at the intersection so people and cars can see each other.

You know, this wasn't such a big problem before SUVs took over the world. You can see over most cars.

Here'ss a very good Streetfilm by Robin Urban Smith and Clarence Eckerson.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Baltimore rocks!

Or at least is doing the right thing with their old parking meters.

Why or why can't NYC just do this instead of make a big deal about new bike parking while taking away almost all good bike parking (parking meters) in the city?

(photo by bosconet via Streetsblog.)


On Metro North.

I just can't help but mention that Portland, Oregon, has been doing it for years.