The other day a bicyclist in Park Slope ended up with stitches when he asked a driver from Bensonhurst to move his car off the freshly painted 9th Street bike lane. The driver got arrested, and few of us would pick a confrontation like that in Brooklyn. However, Brooklyn cyclists are quite vocal in complaining online.
Back in November 2016, the city’s 311 complaint hotline added a category under “illegal parking” that allows us all to complain about blocked bike lanes, though few folks know of it, and even fewer take the time to do so. Since September 4, 2017, there were 4,230 complaints logged by 311 about blocked bike lanes, a mere 1.4% of all parking lane complaints. Most folks just move on, or say a few choice words and move on.
Data scientists at Localize.city, a website that provides insights for every New York City address, decided to pull the data and see if there were any patterns and found there were eight hotspots for bike lane complaints over the past 12 months. To qualify as a hotspot, they felt, an area had to have at least 25 complaints within an 82-foot radius.
Is it surprising that 5 of the top 8 are in Brooklyn?
Bay Ridge shows up as #2 in the city, and no, it does not seem to because of Marty Golden. More likely some folks are ticked off about P.S. 102 related double parking in the bike lane that runs on the school side of the street.
It is followed by two spots in Downtown Brooklyn at #3 and #4, Crown Heights and PLG take #7 and #8 – again indicating bike lane is passing through active pickup and drop-off zones:
If you ever bike down Ocean Avenue or indeed just about any street with apartment buildings or a school, you will encounter the same thing – double parked cars for pickup, drop-off, and deliveries. Without dedicated parking spots or parking restrictions, and an adjacent bike lane, we don’t need to tell you where the double parked cars will be.
The perfect culprit seems to be a fire hydrant right next to a bike lane that few drivers seem to be able to resist pulling in for a “quick stop”:
Here are all the hot spots:
- Long Island City
Vernon Boulevard and 44th Drive: 72
+ Vernon Boulevard and 45th Road: 40
- Bay Ridge
Around 220 and 221 72nd Street: 94
- Downtown Brooklyn
Smith Street and Fulton Street: 38
Vernon Boulevard, between 34th and 35th avenues: 31
- Battery Park City
Between 65 to 69 West Street: 30
- Prospect-Lefferts Gardens
Around 115 and 122 Lincoln Road: 28