Wednesday What The What: Bike Lanes And Bike Safety

Last Thursday, Community Board 10 voted to send a package of bike lane plans to the Department of Transportation for assessment. A little over a year ago, the same board voted against a proposed bike lane along Bay Ridge Parkway. At that time, Council Members Dominic Recchia, Vincent Gentile and Public Advocate Bill de Blasio all piled on statements showcasing their opposition to the lane, as first reported by the Brooklyn Paper.

The change of heart is an interesting one in our community. Our bike lanes are few and far in between. With the exception of the overcrowded and pothole ridden greenway along the Belt Parkway, there isn’t much space for safe riding.

I’ve seen helmetless riders along 86th Street. I’ve seen them zigzagging in between double-parked and stopped cars on Bay Parkway. I’ve seen one get doored along Cropsey Avenue. These are all dangerous routes and most riders do not have the skill of Manhattan’s bike messengers.

Then, there are those riders that take their bikes to the sidewalk, which is yet another terrible idea. Perhaps they think it’s safer to plow down pedestrians than to be mowed over cars.

Either way, we need to improve our bike riding situation for the safety or riders, drivers and walkers. The above mentioned bike lane approvals are still far away from becoming a reality. There will have to be another board vote and the DOT would also have to study the proposed lanes, according to StreetsBLOG.org.

So, what’s next for riders in the neighborhood? How can we improve the situation?

“What the What?” is a new photo feature looking at odd, weird and interesting things in the neighborhood. If you have photos of what the what happenings in Bensonhurst, Bath Beach, Dyker Heights or the surrounding areas send them to lvladimirova [at] bensonhurstbean [dot] com.

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