With recent stats and surveys showing that bike commuting went up 26% city-wide last year, the Daily News recently asked transportation officials, bike activists, cycle shop employees and cyclists of every stripe what, in their opinion, are the best bike lanes in the city. With over 600 miles of lanes and paths all over town (and a plan to have three times as many one day), there are plenty of routes to choose from, and the Daily News does a good job covering all the boroughs.
Their “Best of Old New York,” for instance, isn’t down in the Financial District, but 34th Avenue in Queens, and the “Best Water Views” aren’t from the bridges or the Hudson River Greenway (which took top honors as the “Best of the Best”), but the Shore Parkway Greenway that goes from Jamaica Bay to the Verrazano Bridge.
By and large, though, the awards are all about good bike lanes, and ignore the many places where bike infrastructure is still lacking, non-existent, or ineffective. What about: “Best Whack-a-Pedestrian” for the Grand Street bike lane in Soho, Little Italy and Chinatown (with the nearby Prince Street lane a close second). Also, “Best Proxy Taxi Lane” would be a tie between Second Avenue between 14th Street and Houston, and Eighth Avenue between 23rd Street and 40th Street.
“Worst Bridge” would go to the Pulaski, where pedestrians and cyclists are left to squeeze awkwardly down a narrow walkway, and “Best Construction Site” would go to Kent Avenue in North Williamsburg, where the beautiful two-way bike lane is perpetually blocked by condo construction. Anyone got other bike lane award ideas?