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Massive show of support for Prospect Park West bike lane

The Brooklyn Paper
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Hundreds of cyclists — toddlers on tricycles, sign-waving mamas and helmet-clad dads — rode the Prospect Park West bike lane on Sunday to show support for the city’s most controversial cycle path.

A larger-than-expected crowd celebrated what organizers call the “family friendly re-design” of street — which once consisted of three lanes of speeding cars, but was reconfigured last year into a two-lane road with a two-way bike lane protected by a lane of parked cars.

The redesign is the subject of a lawsuit and a call for removal by a local Assemblyman, but riders on Sunday said they support for the bike lane practical, not political, reasons.

“I’m usually the last person who would come to an organized event like this,” said Brian Ward, a Park Slope dad who uses the lane to cart his toddlers to preschool. “But this is really important to us — we use it twice a day.”

Some supporters did link the personal to the political, handing out buttons with slogans and sporting orange shirts that read, “We ride the lanes!”

Since its installation last June, the Prospect Park West bike lane has been the most controversial use of paint since Manet’s “Olympia.

Some pedestrians say they are confused by the two-way configuration on an otherwise one-way boulevard. And drivers have complained at the loss of one lane for automobiles to accommodate the cycle path.

The lane has been the subject of several supposedly objective polls, and a clear plurality of residents support it, while roughly a quarter of residents want it removed. Another quarter or so want the lane altered with additional safety features for pedestrians.

Two neighborhood groups — Seniors for Safety and Neighbors for Better Bike Lanes — have sued the city, claiming that the bike lane has created dangerously “inconsistent traffic patterns” and “limited visibility” for pedestrians on the busy street.

No opposition group members showed up on Sunday, and group representatives could not be reached immediately for comment.

Still, Councilman Brad Lander (D–Park Slope), a supporter of the lane, showed up with his own two-wheeler and counseled cyclists to ride smart in hopes of not alienating pedestrians, their natural allies.

“Yield to pedestrians!” he said, leading a chant.

The last major show of support for the lane was back in October, when 250 riders crowded the street to celebrate the redesign. Several dozen opponents rallied, too.

On Sunday, bikers hoped to show — at least anecdotally — that the lane gets plenty of use.

“Kids get to feel like they have a space in an intensely paced city,” said co-organizer Joanna Oltman Smith. “This lane is a little oasis.”

Updated 10:48 am, April 13, 2011: An earlier version of this story was posted without pictures, which enraged some of our commenters. We apologize for taking a few extra minutes to edit, process and post pictures. And we apologize for not working 24 hours per day, seven days per week.
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Reader Feedback

Resident from PPW says:
On Sunday, bikers hoped to show — at least anecdotally — that the lane gets plenty of use."

In reality, the bike lane is used on nice weather weekends and an occasional "support the bike lane rally". If a line on the subway or bus was heavily used a few times a year, the MTA would shut it down. Same for building a roadway that is used heavily a few times a year.

The issue for some residents, if there was an alternative roadway a few hundred feet away in a lush park that could be modified to accomondate bikers in a safe environment (no cars) it is irresponsible to build or create a redundant pathway. If the bike lane is such a great idea, why hasn't it been replicated on the other sides of the park?

If the idea was to slow the traffic down on PPW (which the bike lane accomplished) then there were other options on the table to accomplish this goal.

OK, bikers let the name calling begin..........(I would prefer a dialogue though).
April 11, 2011, 4:50 am
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
We had fun

http://whatyourdonotknowbecauseyouarenotme.blogspot.com/2011/04/yea-prospect-park-west-bike-lane-then.html

I wish some of the people who have been convinced it is unsafe would have shown up so we could have shown them how it is easier and safer to cross PPW now.
April 11, 2011, 6:53 am
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Resident, I am not gonna call you names.

It would be great if the lane were replicated on the other sides of the park and on lots of other roads that could use traffic calming.

and making the Prospect Park Loop Road two way would be unsafe for everyone

and this was the best option for slowing down traffic on PPW.

What is the problem?
April 11, 2011, 7:06 am
Steve from PPW says:
This was a ton of fun! Glad to see so many kids riding the lane even in the afternoon to and from baseball!
April 11, 2011, 7:33 am
Resident from PPW says:
Other Michael, thanks for the refrain. Please explain to me why the park loop can't be made a two way thoroughfare?

Or, if the city can convert a busy roadway to build a bike lane, why can't the city/Prospect Park Conservatory build another lane inside the park to encourage alternative transportation?
April 11, 2011, 8:12 am
Peter from Brooklyn Heights says:
@Resident

1) You realize the park lane is hilly and with only a few exits. Are you proposing flattening the hills?

How would someone go from let's say, 7th street to 2nd street? You know the park is closed at night, too, right?

And what is the problem with the lane as is now configured?

The PPW lane was put in at the request of the community board for two reasons:

1) calm the racing street traffic - the majority of cars there sped . Now they don't.

2) get cyclists off the PPW sidewalk.

Both have been accomplished?

Travel times for cars on PPW are the same. There are no reports of a single pedestrian/cyclist collision since the lane is in place.

So what is your beef? You've lost the ability to double-park with impunity?

Get over it.
April 11, 2011, 8:33 am
NBBLing from PPW says:
Our spycams offer incontrovertible proof that only about 20 people showed up for this event.
April 11, 2011, 8:43 am
Mike says:
Actually, according to NBBL and the standard 50:1 multiplier effect they claim for themselves, 37,500 people showed up to this event!
April 11, 2011, 9:05 am
mjd from Park Slope says:
It's clear that families to ride bikes safe from cars! We need more protected bike lanes like the one on PPW. Everywhere.
April 11, 2011, 9:06 am
eveostay from prospect heights says:
Resident -- the redesigned street now carries more commuters than ever. It still carries the same number of cars, plus hundreds of cyclists an hour in the peak times. Isn't that what streets are for -- to facilitate transportation?

The event yesterday highlighted some of the many real people and families the lane is important to. How many people think it's important to make the street more dangerous again? That's what you're arguing for.
April 11, 2011, 9:20 am
Dave from Park Slope says:
Nobody uses Yankee Stadium from November to April -- tear it down. Far fewer people use the park in the winter --- sell it off. And who's going to Coney Island in the winter? Pave it over.

What a ridiculous argument. The PPW bike path gets used year round, and it's going to be giant this summer. Thanks to the lawsuit, tourists will be coming to check it out, adding to the thousands of locals who will use it every day.
April 11, 2011, 9:32 am
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
What makes the two way bike lane on PPW a SAFE place to ride would make it UNSAFE on the Prospect Park Loop Road.

Because PPW is straight and flat bikers can see each other for a great distance. They can also see and bee seen by walkers who want to cross the bike path. The Loop Road is curvy and hilly, it does not have the eye lines that PPW has.

The Park is also closed (and dork and lonely) at night.

The Park also has limited entrances.

PPW is not that busy, it did not need three lanes of moving car traffic.

Adding the bike lane to the already paved road was relatedly inexpensive. I don't think you really want to add more asphalt to Prospect Park.
April 11, 2011, 9:32 am
james from pps says:
Resident -- seriously, I don't see the problem. Prospect Park West *was* a redundant roadway!

Isn't this what you have a problem with?! 3 lanes of automobile traffic was waaaaaay oversized and led to speeding and reckless driving. The road is now noticeably calmer (and safer) and there is now a two-way, safe way for families and other individuals to bike around the neighborhood.

It's not about "lush" and "scenic" -- it's about safe and multiple use roadways!
April 11, 2011, 9:36 am
james from pps says:
By the way, Ms. O'Neill was doing so well... but then couldn't resist throwing in "supposedly objective polls."

Why is this such a painful thing for her? Why can't the results be presented in an objective way. You can present the *actual* shortcomings of various polling methods without throwing in baseless, snide commentary.
April 11, 2011, 9:41 am
NBBLing from PPW says:
Okay, 10:30am next Sunday, we're hosting a "We Drive the Lanes" rally. You must be in a car to participate. The fun kicks off at Grand Army Plaza with speeches from Marty and a T-shirt giveaway (one size fits all - XXXL), and continues to Bartel Pritchard for unlimited Big Macs and our "Loudest Horn" contest. Don't miss it!!!
April 11, 2011, 9:47 am
Pete from Park Slope says:
Hooray for the Bike Lane. Hooray for vocal minority not taking away something so many people love.
April 11, 2011, 9:52 am
chet from park slope says:
Great photos accompanying the article! A picture is worth a thousand words! I love how you were resourceful enough to pull out an old-school point and shoot because the paper can't afford updated DSLR's, and then when that battery died, you were resourceful enough to pull out your cell phone and snap a couple "citizen-journalist" style pics, which are totally acceptable now because of our diminished quality expectations in the modern digital era. Great lesson learned from your intrepid reporting: there is never an excuse not to have a picture in this day and age! Keep up the great work!
April 11, 2011, 9:54 am
Kiddies from PPW says:
Congratulations, Louise Hainline! Thanks to your obsession with the bike lane and your lawsuit, 800 people came out to ride on what otherwise would have been a quiet Sunday!
April 11, 2011, 10:09 am
matt from kensignton says:
Cars are in the park. Until cars are removed from the park ALL THE TIME!!! end the argument "ther is a park they can ride in" The lanes are consistently used not just good weather and weekends.
April 11, 2011, 10:11 am
Iris from PPW says:
what a joke, 8 million people live in NY, that ride on Sunday was puny - a few hobbyists, a couple wackos, and a smattering of put-upon children.

Protect
Pedestrian
Walkers
April 11, 2011, 10:36 am
David from PLG says:
Increasing bike lanes inside the park creates hazards as the park accommodates so many people walking and running. During the busy pedestrian times that coincide with park vehicle traffic, biking is uncomfortably nudged into the car lanes. In the short view, reducing park bike traffic and allowing bike traffic to flow NE on PPW are my two favorite reasons for the bike lanes. In the long view, I so much support all trends to reduce car use. With this controversial bike lane, I support its building with the understanding that if time were to proof it ineffective, then it should be removed. I would bet that with it in place, however, time will show that it will be used more and more as people’s habits change. I would like to think so.
April 11, 2011, 10:37 am
ty from pps says:
Iris -- Is there a reason you would invoke the entire population of New York City in the context of PPW?!

Do you need 200,000 people on bikes from the Bronx and Staten Island to show up? Would that be a big enough and more appropriate sample...

Or would the 750 people representing the families and other residents of Park Slope and the surrounding area make more sense?

Did you miss that a major component of this ride was bicycle-pedestrian safety education?!
April 11, 2011, 10:44 am
rider/driver from Bklyn says:
It is all political. Resentment from former Trans Commissioner having to see this path at her front door. Aw. Meanwhile, contention builds between cars and bikes making things more dangerous. These politically charged causes are the real danger and do no one any service... except the politicians.
April 11, 2011, 10:48 am
Ken from Greenpoint says:
guys stop acting like bunch of babies! Bloomberg is almost out of office bike lanes are history......
April 11, 2011, 11:08 am
Tom Rorb from Red Hook says:
It's incredibly obvious that the PPW Bike Lane use is going to be bigger than last year. Heck, I ran in to two people riding it on Friday for the first time who live in Park Slope! They are cyclists and didn't even know about it, now they are changing their commuting routes to use it.
April 11, 2011, 11:17 am
ty from Bklyn says:
Sustainable, livable -- multi-use -- streets that shift that status quo away from cars (a clear minority in this city) to other forms of transportation... safer pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure, more efficient public transportation including a healthy mix of subways, buses, and streetcars.

This is not a "Bloomberg thing." This is the future of New York City and will become even more and more important as the population grows.

If you add 1 million more folks to NYC, but still have 90% of the roadways dedicated to cars... how do you think that will work? How do you think that will impact the folks that *need* the roads? (delivery and service trucks/vans, emergency vehicles, buses, etc.)

To stick with the early 1950s model of transportation is just foolish. It's been out-of-date and harmful to this city for DECADES.
April 11, 2011, 11:17 am
Peter from Park Slope says:
Proof that, as the saying goes, "A bike lane that isn't safe for an 8 year old isn't a bike lane"
April 11, 2011, 11:20 am
Tom Rorb from Red Hook says:
To Resident: the NBBLers roll their eyes when they find out how much the city spent to re-stripe PPW. Even though it was very little, they like to invoke major drama about it.

And now you suggest the Conservatory build a path inside the park to accommodate cyclists? Any guess how many millions that will cost?

All of this so people can double-park and drive faster and make the streets less safe for pedestrians. Amazing.
April 11, 2011, 11:22 am
Diane Lent from Flatbush says:
Photos: http://www.flickr.com/photos/greenelent/sets/72157626475785436/
April 11, 2011, 11:31 am
Peter from Brooklyn Heights says:
@Peter at Park Slope

>"A bike lane that isn't safe for an 8 year old isn't a bike lane"

Exactly. Ask any of the people who propose a lane on Eighth Avenue, if they'd let their kids ride in it.

Of course not. So they kids would be on the sidewalk (with the parents).

Let's be clear about a simple fact; they don't give a rat's ass about your kid's safety.
April 11, 2011, 12:03 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Just because a lot showed up for this day doesn't mean that it's used constantly. Louise Hainline's camera will say otherwise to that, and she does keep a good watch there. Photo-ops don't count in anything. What NBBL is complaining about is it being used on a regular basis, and according to their studies it's not. Don't be surprised if Bloomberg and JSK will use the photo-op as a claim that it's used much when it was really for that day.
April 11, 2011, 2:01 pm
Tom Rorb from Red Hook says:
Tal - if Louise's camera was actually in a good spot to count, it might be worth something. It needs to be between 3rd and 9th to get any accuracy. Would anyone count users of the West Side Highway from the exit ramp near the Seaport? No, of course not.

Besides, even if there were zero cyclists, damn street is safer.
April 11, 2011, 2:09 pm
Rico from Park Slope says:
Whether you are for or against the bike lane doesn't change one immutable fact: very few people use it.
The DOT's statistics for how many bikers use the lane is one of the more blatant and condescending examples of funny math Ive ever seen. In fact, I'm shocked that they would ever publish such laughable numbers.
It's gorgeous today. Walk to PPW right now and tell me how many bikers you see....
April 11, 2011, 2:17 pm
Sally from PPW says:
Was just at PPW and saw very few cars! Time to tear up the roadway.
April 11, 2011, 2:19 pm
LOLcat from Park Slope says:
@resident,

What will it take for you to give up your stance against the bike lane?

1.Anti Bike Lane protest features more pro bike lanes than anti
2. Community Board meetings feature more pro bike lanes than anti
3. 2 surveys show people prefer the bike lane than 3 lanes of traffic
4. 700-800 families show up in support of the bike lane.

Clearly the community wants this. Why must you insist on fighting against something the vast majority of people want? Are you really that selfish?
April 11, 2011, 2:28 pm
Rico from Park Slope says:
@Sally
"Was just at PPW and saw very few cars! Time to tear up the roadway."

Wow, what a terribly relevant analogy. You totally changed my mind. Bike lanes for life!!!
April 11, 2011, 2:51 pm
ty from PPS says:
Rico -- It's a gorgeous day... walk to PPW and tell me how many people are *driving* right now!! (in the middle of a weekday)

Tell me how many people are using the baseball fields in the park. Tell me how many people are... never mind. You're too dense to understand.

You do know that the typical car on PPW and a bike carry the same number of people, right?
April 11, 2011, 2:51 pm
richie rich from parkslope says:
When are they going to outlaw cars in Prospect Park?
April 11, 2011, 2:56 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First of all, I was at my psychiatrist's appointment at 2pm so whoever typed that comment at 2:01 it was not me.

Second of all, I do not believe Louise Hainline's camera will say otherwise to that because cameras can't talk.
April 11, 2011, 3:24 pm
Peter from Brooklyn Heights says:
@LOLcat

To your question, that's like asking, what will it take to accept the fact of evolution.

The answer is, 'nothing'. Can't be done.
April 11, 2011, 3:24 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Nice impesonation from another bike zealout, and I support Hainline's camera all the way, because it will be showing what is really going on.
April 11, 2011, 3:42 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
"When are they going to outlaw cars in Prospect Park?"

It will either be when the bike lane on PPW is removed or when the Mets win another World Series, which I know is never for either one.
April 11, 2011, 3:43 pm
Louis from PLG says:
@Rico - YOU'VE BEEN SERVED!!!!

Ty slayed you! Go crawl back under Iris's butt
April 11, 2011, 3:53 pm
art525 from park slope says:
What time was this rally because I was there at 2;30 and there wasn't a bike in sight.
April 11, 2011, 4:20 pm
art525 from park slope says:
"Tell me how many people are using the baseball fields in the park. Tell me how many people are... never mind. You're too dense to understand."

Hey ty I was just out in the park at 2:30 to 4:00- not one biker on the bike lane (I took a picture- too bad aI can't post it) but a bunch of the spandex guys in the park. And lots of people lounging in the grass. Lots of joggers. Lots of people out walking. And yes there were kids playing ball. But nope no bke lane bikers.
April 11, 2011, 4:24 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
^You were watching the bike lane for an hour and a half?? ^
April 11, 2011, 4:27 pm
art525 from park slope says:
@other michael from Park Slope- why would it be unsafe to have the bike lane in the park? It's nonsense that you can't see because of hills or curves. Have you been on the park road? It's not like there are blind curves. And it's not dark at night. If you ever ventured in there you would know there are street lights all the way around.
April 11, 2011, 4:29 pm
Not Goish from Prospect Heights says:
All ruined by the idiot food delivery cyclist or two going downhill on the 3rd Street bike line. Downhill = against traffic. Dangerous.
April 11, 2011, 4:32 pm
sj from Sunset park says:
art525
1. The park closes at night
2. Going through the park is extremely inconvenient for bike commuters (I know - I do it.)
3. If if two lanes of traffic is deemed too "dangerous" on PPW, then it would be equally or more dangerous inside the park, where you have arguably more children and seniors trying to cross the street to get to the interior areas of the park.

The bike lane in the park is great for recreation, but the bike lane on PPW serves additional purposes - being a functional route for people who choose to biking as their main form of transportation. The two bike lanes serve different functions, and I have yet to hear of any actual harm coming from the lane on PPW.
April 11, 2011, 4:36 pm
KPE from Glendale says:
@ art525
So, would you're argument be to direct more bike traffic into the park with all of those people? I would also point out a picture wouldn't accurately convey evidence to your claim that there were no bikers using the lane.
April 11, 2011, 4:50 pm
art525 from park slope says:
So KPE wouldn't convey evidence of my claim but I am supposed to accept biker claims with absolutely no evidence? If not phots what? Ridiculous.
April 11, 2011, 5:04 pm
art525 from park slope says:
sj- the park doesn't have to close to bikers at night. If you can create a bike lane on PPW you can certainly open the park drive at night. 3. No it's not dangerous to cross in the park because you can see as you approach it as opposed to crossing between parked cars and also it's much wider so there is room to manouever. ANd 2. Awww I'm sorry it's inconvenient for you. The PPW bike lane is inconvenient to us pedestrians in the neighborhood.
April 11, 2011, 5:08 pm
art525 from park slope says:
@othermichael I wzs wandering around and in and out of the park for an hour and a half. That's right Perry Mason.
April 11, 2011, 5:09 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
I have actually been in the park (running) a lot at night. The road is mostly lit, but I would not want to be on an bike by my self after dark.

It is not just the dark. It is the fact that you can't see into the woods.

and it is not nonsense that you can not see because of the curves.
April 11, 2011, 5:11 pm
LOLcat from Park Slope says:
@art525,

And the multiple car lanes you cross day in and day out aren't inconvenient?

Look up cognitive dissonance n00b.
April 11, 2011, 5:27 pm
Matt from PPS says:
I can't believe grown people are opposed to the bike lane!

Then again, I can't believe that these money bags are using a pro-bono lawyer to hold a tantrum in court! Or that the pro-bono lawyer isn't doing this to ingratiate himself with a US Senator, whose wife is spearheading this thing! But isn't that kind of an illegal quid-pro-quo? Or is it just a "favor" for folks who can return the "favor" in kind?

What I can believe is snarky reporting in both the story and the update! Nothing like a classy, professional Brooklyn paper! Go Gersh!
April 11, 2011, 6:16 pm
Mark from Ft Greene says:
This bike lane should be about as controversial as a sidewalk. Obviously, all of the new bike lanes make it easier for people of all ages to get around the city without generating the huge external costs of driving. As a pedestrian who understands the laws of physics, I fear cars far more than bikes.
April 11, 2011, 7:18 pm
Steve from PPW says:
Seriously, there are nearly 60 comments from people arguing about a bike lane under an article about kids riding their bikes. This is not a controversy.
April 11, 2011, 7:43 pm
sj from Sunset Park says:
art525
I am a pedestrian too - the bike lane is not inconvenient for pedestrians. The point is that all forms of transit deserve safe and convenient roads. There is no reason why pedestrians, cyclists and drivers can't all co-exist with the PPW the way it is. It really is a very minor adjustment for most people that has been blown way out of proportion. I have yet to hear exactly why the bike lane is supposedly so unsafe for pedestrians, other than having to look both ways before crossing the street. As a pedestrian I have never felt unsafe or felt that my visibility was limited when crossing the path. When PPW was a three lane speedway, I did however feel quite unsafe.
April 11, 2011, 8:26 pm
Scott from Park Slope says:
The only reason there is any controversy at all is because a self-absorbed, self-important, self-appointed empress named Iris Weinshall and her equally self-absorbed, self-important, self-appointed emperor husband Chuck Schumer have decreed that the plebes, who dare, DARE to want a traffic-calmed road that their kids can, gasp, cross to the playgrounds in the park without getting run down by livery drivers racing at top speed to get Emperor Chuck and Empress Iris to their posh high teas with IMPORTANT PEOPLE, will be crushed. Hey Iris, Chuck, and Jim Brennan, take a look around you at how massively outnumbered you are by families and people in the neighborhood who like PPW exactly the way it is now and re-assess how far you want to take this anti-family, anti-Park Slope jihad of yours.
April 11, 2011, 9:01 pm
John from Bay Ridge says:
"Massive show of support"
Where are the hunderds? One picture has two and the other has four bikers. With such a strong title at least put a picture to back it up!
April 11, 2011, 9:37 pm
boof from brooklyn says:
Hey art525 -- that's a lie! I picked up my son at school at 2:40 pm and then rode south on PPW to Bartel Pritchard. ON A BIKE! HAH!
April 11, 2011, 9:40 pm
james from pps says:
@John from Bay Ridge -- I don't think those are even photos from this Sunday.

Here's what happened...
http://www.streetfilms.org/ride-the-lanes-prospect-park-west-family-bike-ride/
April 11, 2011, 11:11 pm
james from pps says:
Also, Art525, don't be absurd... Your comments about visibility and the "inconvenience" to pedestrians is ridiculous. At each crosswalk there is a pedestrian buffer where you arrive after crossing the street -- that buffer also pushes back the parked cars. So you have full visibility of the lane long before you even finish crossing the street.

Not to mention, even if the cars were up to the crosswalk... well, except if the last car is a huge box truck or a school bus... you can see a bicycle anyway unless you're a foot tall and you've decided to actually look.

From the buffer you cross to the sidewalk. Most bikers will slow and yield to you while you cross the EIGHT FEET... and if they don't yield, you might have to wait 3-1/2 seconds for the bike to pass. When you see a truck barreling down the street and it doesn't stop for you in the crosswalk, do you step in front of it anyway?

Ya know what I've experienced? I was slowing for a pedestrian in the crossing and was prepared to stop if I had to... and she waved me by! Can you imagine the inconvenience to her? She's a martyr really. The fortitude she must have to be able to stand for an extra 3 secs in the pedestrian buffer! Amazing.

And just last week, I saw an old lady *using* the bike lane instead of the sidewalk because she had a push walker that's nicer on the smooth surface... 3 or 4 bikes passed her on the southbound side as I was riding towards here on the northbound side. Not one biker yelled at her or threatened her. That didn't seem right, we have a rep to protect, right? So I gave her a proper kick and spit on her after yelling anti-pedestrian slogans popular among us bicycle gang members.

Your exaggerations don't strengthen your argument -- they make you look more absurd.
April 11, 2011, 11:25 pm
KPE from Glendale says:
art525
My point was that a picture cannot physically convey evidence of an entire bike lane being empty for an hour and a half. Just as I couldn't snap a picture of an empty cubicle and claim my office was empty for half the day.
April 12, 2011, 9:12 am
Bob from Park slope says:
Massive show... it was a big joke so little 53 people came out to support.....

i am biking almost every day i am shame to see there is no support at all..
April 12, 2011, 11:11 am
Johanna from Park Slope says:
Uh - John - From Bayridge - there were not only hundreds, there were more than 1,000. If you want to "see this for yourself" - no problem. Here you go:

http://www.streetfilms.org/ride-the-lanes-prospect-park-west-family-bike-ride/

enjoy.
April 12, 2011, 1:35 pm
Johanna from Park Slope says:
To Rico "Very few people use it."

Really ? This is like closing down a laundramat because nobody is doing their laundry at 11am on a Thursday .

The lanes are busy when people are busy - in the morning rush hour and after work and on the weekends. During work days Prospect Park is very empty, do we need to cement over the park because no one is in there 11:00am on a Thursday?

The bike lanes also have been spreading now by word of mouth so more and more people are using them. You should try it.

http://www.streetfilms.org/ride-the-lanes-prospect-park-west-family-bike-ride/
April 12, 2011, 1:44 pm
Sally from PPW says:
Guys, I was just on the BQE. Very few people driving on it right now. Must all be at work. Can we tear it down since it's only really used fully at rush hour?
April 12, 2011, 2:08 pm
Stephen Paul from Carroll Street says:
I did not buy my brownstone in Park Slope on Carroll Street near PPW for $3.8 million to watch crazy people bike-riding along an ugly green bike path that what would otherwise be a lovely boulevard alla Paris!

Aesthetics, S'il vous plait.
April 12, 2011, 2:37 pm
Steve from PPW says:
Stephen, you may want to check out this link.

http://grieve-smith.com/transportation/blog1.php/2010/10/30/bicycles-will-take-over-the-champs-elysees

Paris is planning to put bike lanes on the Champs Elysees.
April 12, 2011, 2:41 pm
Johanna from Park Slope says:
Stephen.

You have purchased a $3.8 million dollar home but you have not purchased Park Slope. This is called a community. Look it up in the urban dictionary. The definition appears to have escaped you.
April 12, 2011, 4:19 pm
kay from brooklyn says:
From the photos here and on Inhabitat, there is not one non-white person taking part in this "massive" show of support. If biking remains only for middle and upper-class white folks then bike lanes will remain a contentious proposition, and anyone who has any kind of class or race analysis of this -- even one who loves biking as a form of transportation -- will not be fully in support.
April 12, 2011, 6 pm
Peter from Brooklyn Heights says:
Kay,
Well the demographics of PPW kind of dictate this stuff. FWIW, at the 'anti' protests, they are 100% white, and I would hazard the median age is 60.
April 12, 2011, 6:04 pm
ty from pps says:
Stephen Paul -- I really hope you're joking. You are right?!

A 3-lane superhighway with cars bombing down the street and parking and double-parking on both sides is hardly a grand boulevard.

By the way, the KEY thing here is that the Champs-Elysées does not have parking. (Not to mention it's MUCH wider, has shopping and a huge pedestrian plaza the whole length, etc. etc.)

Now, if you want to have all of the parking removed, the bike lane painted a different shade, and a pretty streetcar installed so it looks like the 1920s, I'm all for it. That would be a grand boulevard.
April 12, 2011, 7:56 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Sally, most of the time I listen to the traffic report, I hear the BQE getting backed a lot. The majority of it is usually by the Kosciusko Bridge, and that's for being by the LIE interchange. Others have been on the Gowanus portion. Therefore, it is used a lot, not a little. Maybe you are just using it when it's not so major or you lucked out on traffic. I can show evidence that the Cross-Bronx Expwy is never a picnic and neither is the ramp from the Major Deegan Expwy to the Alexander Hamilton Bridge. and I know that from always seeing it. Regaurdless, highways are always going to be needed, and I already explained why on the topic that disscussed the BQE over on that, so I will not repeat myself here.
April 12, 2011, 8:08 pm
Other Michae from Park Slope says:
Tal, is this you or an impersonator? You are making less sense than usual.

Are you OK?

Are you drunk? on drugs??
April 12, 2011, 8:56 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
That could not have been me at 8:55 pm. I was repainting the bike lane on Bedford Ave and everyone knows there is no internet in Williamsburg.

Anyway, I don't think Tal is real so I would not be so concerned with his well being.
April 13, 2011, 7:24 am
NY Post Reader from Park Slope says:
Copied and pasted from today's NY Post.

If you build it, maybe they won't come.
The city is aggressively expanding the number of controversial bike lanes in every borough, and claiming the number of cyclists is skyrocketing -- but a new report says there are actually fewer commuters pedaling to work.

A paltry 0.6 percent of New Yorkers -- a total of 22,686 -- used bikes to go to and from their jobs in 2009, according to the US Census-based study, released yesterday by NYU's Furman Center.
That's 14 percent fewer than in 2007, when more than 26,000 people pedaled the streets in suits and ties.

But studies conducted by the city's Transportation Department say the number of people who rode bikes increased 66 percent from 2007 to 2009.
City officials defended their numbers, pointing out that they're counting people who use bikes for any reason, including recreation.

The city's number provides a more reliable picture because its data reflect actual counts taken 10 times a year, said Seth Solomonow, a DOT spokesman.
"We count cyclists, not questionnaires," he said, in a clear criticism of the Census methodology.
The city's survey is taken at four bridges, the Staten Island Ferry and the Hudson River Park bikeway.
Ralph Buehler, a professor at Virginia Tech who studies bicycle trends, pointed out problems with both the city and the federal data.

"The US Census measures the main mode of transportation to work. So if you bike two times a week and take a train three times a week, they are going to record the train," he said.

Buehler also took a shot at the city's measurements, saying the DOT is focused on areas where there's a concentration of bicyclists, such as Manhattan and the Brooklyn neighborhoods closest to Manhattan.
The NYU study also revealed that 57 percent of New Yorkers took mass transit to work, while 29.9 drove and 10.7 walked.

Meanwhile, the city falls short when compared to commuting cyclists nationwide.
About 2.2 percent of the work crowd in Boston and 2.3 percent in Washington, DC, pedaled to their jobs, the NYU study showed.

Bikers questioned at random on the Queens side of the 59th Street Bridge lined up with the city.

"In the last two years, many more people are biking to work," said Mike Hogan, a carpenter biking from Manhattan to Woodside. "When the gas and the fares went up, it was a double-whacking."
The annual NYU report deals primarily with housing issues, but contains a wealth of demographic information, such as:

* Coney Island had the most people over 65; Borough Park had more residents under 18.

* The Upper East Side boasted the most residents with college degrees.

Read more: http://www.nypost.com/p/news/local/city_bike_numbers_unwheel_oxUsOOOEkKcCRR1kj77SvJ#ixzz1JPOL9Wk3
April 13, 2011, 9:14 am
Wouldn't Brag About Copying and Pasting from from Bklyn says:
"The US Census measures the main mode of transportation to work. So if you bike two times a week and take a train three times a week, they are going to record the train," he said.
April 13, 2011, 10:03 am
james from pps says:
The Post prides itself on starting off with juicy headlines even if the remainder of the article directly contradicts the lead.
April 13, 2011, 12:34 pm
Sally from PPW says:
If you bike for errands or to appointments or to drop your kids off somewhere, but not to work every day, you weren't counted.
April 13, 2011, 12:49 pm
james from pps says:
Silly Sally... Didn't you know, people only use transportation to commute to work. No other movement of your person counts.

Driving to the store instead of walking or biking doesn't have any effect on congestion. Only commuting causes problems. The rest is free!
April 13, 2011, 1:50 pm
Liz from Williamsburg says:
I've always been afraid of biking on the streets but entirely due to the fact that there are more bike lanes now I just bought my first bike for use in NY. If you keep building more bike lanes more people will want to use bikes--I know many people who love the idea of biking to get around but are nervous because they don't have bike lanes near them. The Williamsburg ones aren't great since there isn't a buffer but they are something, even if cars are always double parked in them.
April 13, 2011, 6:02 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First off, that was said be me last night on the BQE and other highways. However, most of you don't drive a lot as I do, so you will never understand what they are really like when I witness them a lot. I wouldn't demonize Robert Moses a lot, because many of the highways are not city owned, they are either state or federally owned. Also, he was only trying to help reduce gridlock by demanding for them, which was a good idea in theory. Believe it or not, there are lot of trips I make that involve using the highways, and it cuts down on the time it takes to get from my house from where I need to be. Please remember, that highways were not made to create a car culture, but react to them, and the car culture already existed before that. Of course, Sally has never rebuttled after that, so I guess my statement yesterday put her in her place on that. Unlike bike lanes, highways are used very frequently, so they are not going away anytime soon.
April 13, 2011, 8:19 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal

I actually drive a lot.

You should read The Power Broker. It will give you some incite into Robert Mosses how the building of highways did create car culture.
April 13, 2011, 9:49 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Other Michael, in this country, no politician or any other government agency can create a culture or society, just react to one. The car culture already existed before Moses came around. The only difference was that he believed in creating more roads and highways than what was there before. The car culture wasn't even originated in the US, it was started in Germany after a man named Nikolas Otto invented the internal combustion engine in 1876. You can learn a lot from watching Carmen Sandiego, because that's where I got the information and why it's called the automobile after him. As a matter of fact, Germany was also first in creating the first major expressway known as autobahn, which is where the US got the idea for the interstate highway system. I am surprised that you didn't do a full research. As for bicycles, I wouldn't be giving Bloomberg credit, because some bike lanes go all the way back to Ed Koch, and he was just responding to a bike culture, not creating one either. Even the subway was created in reaction to help people get to long distances at faster time rather than walking or taking carriages.
April 14, 2011, 12:17 am
Mike says:
"You can learn a lot from watching Carmen Sandiego, because that's where I got the information and why it's called the automobile after him."

Um, you realize that that's a children's geography entertainment show, right? And that the automobile isn't ACTUALLY named after a guy named Otto; it's just a cute story?

Most of us are on an adult mental level here. It's a shame Tal isn't.
April 14, 2011, 8:55 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First off Mike you are incorrect. Carmen Sandiego is an education program and therefore what it says on there is educational.

Similarly to that even though I live far away I am able to have an opinion on the PPW bike lane because I have seen episodes of many TV shows based in Brooklyn, including Law & Order and Welcome Back Kotter.
April 14, 2011, 2:47 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Sorry, guys. The imposter Tal Barzilais are never as funny as the real one because they are not as funny.
April 14, 2011, 2:58 pm
ty from pps says:
I wish ALL of the Tal Barzilais would just go away... *especially* the fake ones. Kinda annoying.
April 14, 2011, 3:48 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I'm sure if the real one went away the fake ones will too.

Sooner or later he'll get tired of his obsessive posting about bike lanes, just as he previously got tired of his obsessive posting about WTC redevelopment and Atlantic Yards.
April 14, 2011, 4:31 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Let me remind you, that I was not at my computer at all on neither Thursday or Friday. I went to the airport, and I am now in Israel. Nice try to claim that you guys are me, and I do have my suspects. As for the claiming where the automobile got its name, it was after Nickolas Otto, and I suggest looking that up like I did, but I know many of you bike zealouts will not bother to that, because you know I will be right. That image on top doesn't do any justice for claiming the support for the bike lane, and TA is known for using such event as claim that they are used a lot when they aren't.
April 16, 2011, 12:26 pm
Mike says:
Are you trying especially hard to be dense? Tal, provide a single piece of evidence that your silly claim about Otto is true. What is named after Otto is the Otto cycle, a specific engine mechanism, but not automobiles. "Auto" means "self" in Greek.

This easily disproven "fact" is about as true as nearly all of Tal's claims.

Sigh. I can't wait until he stops wasting our time.
April 17, 2011, 1:28 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Mike, I got this from PBS, so take your beef with them, not me. Either way, Otto did invent the internal combustion engine that cars used today, and is credited for that. He may not have actually invented the first automobile, but he did make the engine for them. Regaurdless to that, why are you so hostile on this? You don't hear me making any personal attacks at you. Where I come from, we don't use insults. Back in Israel, we call those people who are always so hostile towards those who disagree known as Hamasing them, which is after the very terrorist group themselves who never listens to reason, and believes in attacking only. As for bike lanes, I suggest you read the Voice of the People on the Daily News from yesterday, because that person stated that there aren't a lot of people to justify the use of bike lanes let alone the number of them created. On other thing, if you don't like I comment on, then simply don't read, because just like the WNBA, nobody is pointing a gun at your head or a knife at your throat and telling you to read my comments or you will be murdered. Mike, maybe you are the one who needs a life or just needs to take a chill pill.
April 17, 2011, 4:19 am
Mike says:
Oh my god, Tal. Stop. Go away. You don't live in Brooklyn or have any connection to Brooklyn. You are the one who's creating the negative atmosphere here.
April 17, 2011, 12:53 pm
Tall Tales from unpleasantville, NY says:
Oh my god, Tal is a friggin joke! Maybe he's a plant to boost the Brooklyn Paper's ad revenues. ;)
April 17, 2011, 9:43 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Mike, first off, knock it off with the demand for censorship and any other personal attacks. Just because I disagree on bike lanes, doesn't mean that I am against the biking culture as a whole, and the same thing for saying that you guys should follow the rules. This "us vs them" attitude really needs to stop, because it all it does is just create more enemies that places like Streetsblog and TA already have. If you don't like what I am saying, then don't read it, because nobody is forcing you to do so. What's your beef on this anyway? Do you have close realations with JSK? This sort of reminds me of the Atlantic Yards supporters who tend to have close relations with Bruce Ratner in why some supporters are always so defesnive. Nevertheless, Steve Cuozzo did write a column on today's NY Post claiming that those using the bike lane and bike parking facilities are a very a small number and some places are hardly ever used. I didn't make up the numbers and neither did he. If you don't like what he said, then write a letter to the editor, and not to me. On a side note, cut it out with the impersonations, which is still a real low even for you.
April 18, 2011, 5:14 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal

We can't censor you. We just want to make sure the world knows that you don't know what you are talking about from 50 miles away.
April 18, 2011, 5:48 pm
tyler from pps says:
Tal -- Steve Cuozzo's article is full of blatant lies and distortions.... It is. You can believe what he wrote (with no actual data provided, mind you) That's fine.
April 18, 2011, 7:38 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
First off, enough with the attacks. For the unteenth time, you guys had your say, so let others have theirs'. Is the whole point of you bike zealots to make sure that every media source agrees with you? What is wrong if some don't? There is a thing known as freedom of the press. Also, I don't go around trying to stop others from what they are trying to say either nor have I ever tried to just because I don't agree with it. It's such an irony that I have always been told to be nice, corteous, and respectfull to others, but hardly anyone is that way back to me. Look at what you guys say before attacking others. As for Cuozzo, he does put stats in that column, and if some of you actually read it like I did, he did have information backing his claim. Again, send a letter to the editor if you think he is wrong, and not to me, because I didn't write it, he did. Then again, I am still waiting for how the stats provided by JSK aren't fudged, and nobody has backed that up.
April 19, 2011, 5:09 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal How do you expect anyone to prove the Dept of Transportation stats are legit.

and Tal you can say what ever you want. You can even call us Bike Zelots. (that is funny considering how ofen I am actually on my bike and how much I drove my car in Brooklyn over the past 3 days.) But, we can point out that you are FIFTY MILES AWAY IN SUBURBAN WHEREEVERVILLE.
April 19, 2011, 6:13 pm
OtherMikesMom from PPW Bench says:
I walk PPW every day and the bike lanes are always empty!!
April 20, 2011, 3:12 am
OtherMikesMom from PPW Bench says:
BTW, Natalie O'Neil. You're Bike lane articles are so biased and false I think they where either written by the DOT or the Uber radical bike lane advocates themselves. Your flash-mob pro-bike rally twits that came out to counter protest the original anti-bike lane rally just rode back and forth in front of the cameras to make it look like the lanes were packed with people. The lanes have been empty ever since. And all the Mike's, Peters and Steves are all on here all day long so we know the only thing their riding with their fat asses is a used office chair in their moms basement in greenpoint or they're taking up space for hours in starbucks (that could be used for actual customers) pretending to be writers!
April 20, 2011, 3:22 am
Mike says:
Real mature, there.
April 20, 2011, 10:46 am
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
That is Tal trying to make us Michaels look bad.
April 20, 2011, 11:06 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
I don't make comments at such a time like that. Also, I am not online 24-7, so I didn't make that post at 3:22 AM, someone else did. I do have a life outside the internet if you didn't know. Another thing is that I don't make comments like that. I am very respecting to others, yet nobody does the same for me, plus my comments don't include insults. Just because I don't live in the area doesn't mean that I can't talk about the issue. The internet brings everyone from all over the world to talk, and it's not private, so be carefull what you say online, because there will always be someone looking at it. Since there is no backing that JSK is right, her stats will continue to be questioned until it's proven not to be fudged. On a side note, I won't argue with what that person said about Starbucks with people on their labtops there, because sometimes, I can't find a place to sit there. Reguardless, I don't need another name to debate you, and I don't use personall attacks either. Just because I don't like something, doesn't mean that I am stopping others from liking it.
April 20, 2011, 4:26 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal,

Of course you are allowed to chime in on topic that have nothing to do with you and you have no first hand knowledge of . But the the people who know what they are talking about and are effected by these issues will call you out on it.
April 20, 2011, 7:49 pm
Other Michaels Mom from PPW Bench says:
yeah, like you guys are really from Park Slope! And you're not on here constantly, (every freakin day, several times a day) Throwing the insults at anyone that doesn't agree with you! Gimmie a break! Tal probably lives as close to PPW as you idiots! When Mayor Shroomberg's extended reign is over, The bike lanes will be removed!!
April 20, 2011, 10:15 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
You guys have to learn how to handle a debate. It's not just your community paying for the bike lanes, it's the entire city. In other words, it's their taxes as well, not just yours'. If you have a right to saying how much the bike lanes should stay, then others should have their say as well. I still don't see a reason to place a lane that isn't used all the time. That event that occurred is probably one of the few times it's actually been used. Very nice photo-op for Streetsblog and TA, but I don't buy it, and there are people on the City Room that agree with me on that.
April 21, 2011, 7:04 am
Tal's therapist says:
Clearly, autism and the internet don't mix.
April 21, 2011, 7:02 pm
Other Michael from Park Slope says:
Tal

I am not debating YOU. I am proving you wrong and uninformed.

anyway, Is Pleasantville, NY part of "the city"
April 21, 2011, 10:12 pm

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