Friday, August 23, 2013

Bike-share NYC Utopia Vs Reality

I together with 60,000 other New Yorkers joined BikesshareNYC to use the 6,000 bikes, now placed in over 200 stations. I understand that within a year there will be 10,000 bikes at 300 stations, extending into the Upper West Side and Park Slope Brooklyn, two neighborhood I occasionally visit.

I didn't bike much in New York City, without this option. I give biking a modest rating in the quiet streets of The West Village, but even here there is a lot of construction going on with narrowed streets and few people know what to expect.

Here are several burning problems.

1. I believe that most new separate bike lanes are officially One-way but there are many people abusing this rule. Should the rule be changed? Should the bike lanes be repainted?

2.  On Fifth Avenue trucks ore unloading their wares for lengthy periods of time on both sides of the street. Could lengthy unloads be on ONE side of the street?

3.  Pedestrians are walking or standing in the bike-lanes more than necessary at corners. Pedestrians are entering the bike lanes without even looking if a bike is coming.

4.  I do not recommend bicycling north of 14st on any avenues that don't have a SEPARATE bike-lane.  I have  be predicting accident and a few have already occured (on 5th Ave, and a front page Taxi-driver-bicyclist-pedestrian incident this week in August 2013.

5.  Bicycling with two bicycle lanes on one way cross-town street.  When when a car is between two bicyclists  (rather than one behind another) even one way streets become too crowded and dangerous. What side of the street should bicyclists generally use, if I am correct to say that one lane is correct and safe.

6.  Commercial vendors walking their carts on the bike path. 

7.  How long does a taxi need to pick up or drop off customers. On one way narrow streets (like adjacent to the arc at Washington Square Park) why do they need to stop on the green colored bike path (unless a  customer is disabled)????  Keep taxis off the green painted bike paths.

I like a few guide-lines I found in PDF:

I will look for answers at

1. The Bike Share NYC website

2. Transportation Alternatives website

3.  National Public Radio's specialty website

4.  League of American Bicyclists