Jan. 29, 2020 By Allie Griffin
Greenpoint and Williamsburg will get new new protected bike lanes this year — including a long-called-for lane to the Kosciuszko Bridge, the mayor announced today.
The Department of Transportation (DOT) will install the protected lanes along Franklin Street in Greenpoint and Meeker Avenue, which runs through both Williamsburg and Greenpoint and connects the Williamsburg Bridge to the Kosciuszko Bridge.
When both spans of the Kosciuszko Bridge opened in August last year — complete with a 20-foot wide bike and pedestrian path, transit advocates took issue with a lack of a safe pathway for cyclists to get to it.
The bridge connects the truck-heavy industrial sections of Greenpoint and Maspeth and the lack of bike lanes makes it dangerous and difficult for cyclists to reach the span on either side.
Cyclists and elected officials questioned why bike lanes were not completed to coincide with the bridge’s opening.
The mayor’s office didn’t provide a timeline for the construction of the bike lanes — or when the Queens-side of the Kosciuszko would be getting the lanes.
“I can’t imagine a better place to kick off this year’s Green Wave than my beloved Brooklyn,” Mayor Bill de Blasio said. “We’re redoubling our efforts to protect cyclists, and New Yorkers can expect to see many more protected bike lanes across the city this year.”
Six other corridors in Brooklyn will also have bike lanes by the end of the year, as part of the mayor’s Green Wave plan to create 30 miles of protected bicycle lanes citywide in 2020.
Advocates have rallied for more protected bike lanes across the city, as cyclist deaths hit a historic high last year. In the city, 28 cyclists were killed by vehicles in 2019 and 18 of the fatalities were in Brooklyn.
This is welcome news, since these areas have heavy truck traffic, and many unfortunare bike fatalitis have been related to trucks.
I am not for protected bicycle lanes. The protection barriers are nothing but an eyesore. If bicyclists just learned the rules of the road, then there would be less fatal accidents. The city needs to get a better handle on this and start making bicyclists get a license and register their bicycle. I know I’m going to get tons of thumbs down on this but I had to put this out there. I never want to see any tragedy with a bicyclist but it’s up to them to ensure their own safety.