The Next Prospect Park West? New Bike Lane and Traffic Signals for Eastern Parkway

03/24/2011 10:09 AM |

Coming soon: More bike lane.
  • Coming soon: More bike lane.

The stretch of Eastern Parkway between Grand Army Plaza and the Brooklyn Museum at the intersection with Washington Avenue is ripe for the traffic-calming, cyclist- and pedestrian-friendly infrastructure which will be built there beginning next month. The Brooklyn Paper reports that locals have been lobbying the city to do something about the five-lane highway and its intersection with four-lane Washington Avenue since 2000.

Construction, with a projected cost of $6 million, will be finished next year. Among the improvements are a widened pedestrian median and new pedestrian signal at the crosswalk in front of the Brooklyn Museum at Washington Avenue—where pedestrians currently have to take cues from the automobile signals—a new protected bike lane on the median separating Eastern Parkway from the service road that will connect to lanes at Grand Army Plaza and the “controversial” one on Prospect Park West, new traffic signals, and updates to sewers and water mains.

The focus of these street-level improvements is on the east side of this stretch of Eastern Parkway, closest to Washington Avenue, an intersection where an average of two pedestrians are injured every year, and where car accidents are a virtually daily occurrence. Let’s hope nobody sues to sop them.

One Comment

  • Bravo! We need an interconnected grid of Bike Lanes. If the Bike Lane doesn’t connect with another Bike Lane, and dumps the cyclist into a Parkway with no Bike Lane, it’s not very good.
    Hopefully, more people will start using bicycles. I don’t think enough people realize the advantage a bicycle has, when compared to walking. A person on a bicycle can cover five times more distance than he or she could otherwise walk. This is due partly to the wheels, but mainly to Mechanical Advantage, or in other words, each turn of the pedals makes the wheels turn FIVE times. I have been surprised by the number of people who do not know this simple fact, considering that the chain-drive bicycle has been around since 1886.
    One can ride a bicycle at a slow or moderate speed, and have the advantage of covering five times more ground. In fact , considering one can go five times the distance North and South, and go five times the distance East and West, the cyclist has twenty-five (25) times the range of a pedestrian with the same leg muscles!
    And while advocates point out that bicycling saves gas, we should also remember that bicycling will save shoe-leather; you cover five times more ground without wearing out your shoes. And your feet don’t hurt.
    The bicycle was not invented to replace the car. The Bike came before the car. Bicycles were originally intended to replace horses, and horse-back riding. But you don’t have to feed a bicycle everyday, like you would a horse. Consider that owning a bicycle doesn’t require Veterinarian bills or cleaning up after with a (large) pooper-scooper, and you begin to understand why bicycles are so popular.