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Flushing Avenue to get two-way protected bike lane!

The Brooklyn Paper
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Flushing Avenue will sprout a protected, two-way bike lane to link cyclists between the Manhattan Bridge and Williamsburg, the city revealed on Tuesday.

In an effort to ramp up the Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway project — essentially a borough-circling greenway idealized in 1993 — Department of Transportation officials also proposed that traffic flow be converted to one-way going westbound on the stretch of Flushing Avenue between Kent Avenue in Williamsburg and Navy Street in Vinegar Hill, as well as adding a green median separating bikers from traffic.

It’s all in the name of slowing down traffic, making a high-volume bikeway actually usable, and bringing more people to local businesses on the stretch.

“It’s part of a larger vision for a waterfront route — this step will really change Flushing Avenue for the better,” said Ted Wright, manager of the Greenway project.

Tuesday’s presentation to Community Board 2’s Transportation Committee was preliminary, but officials want the project implemented by July.

The finished strip would run traffic westbound with parking lanes on either side. A nine-foot green median on the north side of the lane would separate the two-way bike lane from traffic, and offer a buffer zone for pedestrians looking to cross the street.

The former eastbound traffic would be pushed to Park Avenue — but a study by the department revealed that the route could absorb double its current traffic, even at peak hours. Plus, Wright claimed, eastbound traffic on Flushing Avenue is rare.

On the other hand, biking traffic volume on Flushing Avenue is too high for safety.

“I ride my bike a lot along the strip and it feels dangerous,” said Mike Epstein, committee member. “The high speed of vehicles makes it dangerous to cross the road, to bike, and even to live nearby.”

He also added that bikers are already detoured onto Flushing Avenue because of the controversial removal of the Bedford Avenue bike lane last year.

Transportation officials noted that the new lane would prompt trucks going to the Navy Yard to stay on the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway until they exit for westbound travel — improving safety and lowering freight traffic in small neighborhoods like Clinton Hill.

Updated 5:17 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

Bill Harris from Boerum Hill says:
And the winners are:
1. All drivers on this long and lonely feeling strip, which has great potential for... (?) something.
2. Our Brooklyn DOT and their Greenway planners,
for an inspired and relatively cheap re-envisioning of
Flushing Avenue. The result will be user friendly for everyone, but that old "Twilight Zone" quality on Flushing will be gone, alas.

(Commenting is a member of the CB2 Transportation committee)
March 17, 2010, 9:27 am
Mike Epstein from Fort Greene says:
This makes headlines as a bike project, but it's hard to stress highly enough the benefits for pedestrians from this redesign. The planted median islands will shorten crossing distance almost in half, while protecting pedestrians from oncoming traffic as they wait to cross. A similar design has improved conditions dramatically on 8th and 9th Avenues in Chelsea, and I expect to see those benefits here as well.
March 17, 2010, 10:48 am
AlexB from Astoria says:
Awesome Awesome Awesome!!!
March 17, 2010, 11:17 am
Dave from Clinton Hill says:
I'm a cyclist and live 2 blocks up from Flushing so overall this sounds fantastic, only caveat I have would be the increased traffic routed onto Park Ave which is already severely congested anytime the BQE westbound has traffic on it, this puts more vehicular traffic right next to the residential area of the neighborhood.
March 17, 2010, 12:53 pm
Pacholo from Red Hook says:
When the next mayor is elected all these bike lanes will disappear when he finds out the reason(Mike's Bike Lanes) all his staff is always late to work.
March 17, 2010, 3:38 pm
Mike from GP says:
@Pacholo -I know you're trolling, but that's really silly. Bike lanes don't cause delays for cars -- too many people driving do that!
March 18, 2010, 4:23 am
she from clinton hill says:
no! The double parked cars on Kent are a fiasco. I am an avid bike rider and a part time car driver. Pedestrians popping out between the parked cars all the time!!!! I love the idea of the bike lanes but don't create a mess of traffic too. Why do we need so much parking down there anyways?
March 18, 2010, 12:14 pm
Dav from Williamsburg says:
She from Clinton hill... Before you post something go do some home-work, your problem is you don’t even know what Kent Ave is all about!
Do you know how many hundreds of people living on Kent Ave. how many school buses are pick and dropping off kids every day including Sundays,
I ask you the question how many bikers stopping for red flashers of the yellow school buses? The answer is none!! That’s a very big problem,
Parking should not be your concern you don’t and never will understand as long you don’t live in the neighborhood,
Don’t call this double park its like all over the place just follow the rules and regulations 20 mph. just stop complaining….
March 18, 2010, 12:45 pm

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