Thursday, January 21, 2016

A better plan for Queens Blvd?

From the Times Ledger: 25-year resident of Woodside has a different name in mind. Community advocate and safety consultant Bill Kregler believes that if changes are not made to the boulevard’s redesign plan, it will become known as the “Road to Ruin.”

During a walking tour with DOT officials and community leaders last week, Kregler handed Trottenberg a 35-page detailed report, complete with 116 photographs, that he authored. The report documents the deterioration of the service road driving lanes that have been neglected as construction of the bike lanes became the DOT’s priority.

“In their rush to create a commuter lane for cyclists, and removing travel lanes along one of the busiest roadways in the city for the first time, they’ve created a mess with potholes, cracking asphalt and sinking and collapsing of the service utility cover, because all that traffic is being forced into one overused lane,” Kregler said. “Since its implementation, vehicles have slowed to a crawl during the morning and evening rush hours, creating bottlenecks, and motorists peel off dangerously down our side streets, creating a safety hazard for our children and seniors. Woodside is getting the shaft here and it is becoming a dangerous situation.”

Kregler said Trottenberg did not seem to be pleased to receive his report, although a DOT spokesman confirmed it was being reviewed. Kregler is a former housing cop turned firefighter who went on to become a fire marshal and current president of the Fire Marshal’s Benevolent Association. He also spent 10 years on the Community Educational Council as a representative of the borough president.

Kregler emphasized that he believes in the bike lanes, but that their location was poorly conceived and this is affecting the quality of life along the boulevard in Woodside.


Anonymous said...

Good for him. Unfortunately all of the time he spent documenting the horrible condition of Queens Blvd may have have been in vain. Maybe not. Hopefully this DOT Commissioner will be more receptive and will address the problems. A similar project was done a little further east about 10 years ago, but the only thing that got accomplished was the filling of some old potholes. I wish him luck.

(sarc) said...

The sewer grate in the photo could easily be removed and be used to eliminate a lot of pedestrians and cyclists...

Anonymous said...

Queens BLVD has some serious fucking issues beginning with the potholes and the islands that separate each lane of traffic. The area needs more street lamps, trees. All the open sewage drains need to be dredged. This has been the case for 20 years and things haven't gotten any better. Wake Up KATZ!!

Anonymous said...

well our counselman Jimmy Van Bramer is all for this -- stupity at it best -- more money lining the pockets you never ever see a biker on the bike lanes but at the meeting JVB forgot to tell everyone that the bike lanes are also for people to walk on too another stupid idea -- the only ones that walk there are the people that are collecting bottles - pretty sad -- the whole queens boulevard is messed up with this diaster --

Anonymous said...

Fucking bike lanes again.
With the storm coming and 50mph winds, snow who the fuck will be using the bike lanes?
Again the Agenda 21 effort to get the people out of their cars.
NYC is not Amsterdam, the US is not Europe.
The tragedies on Queens Blvd happened because certain people ignored basic safety and traffic laws.
Now stupid politicians have an answer - nothing good ever comes of their solutions.
Kudos for Mr. Kegler who is doing the DOT's job here - competently!

Anonymous said...

I leave my house at 7:00 am and usually cross north across Queens Boulevard at 70th Street -- it's complete GRIDLOCK! Lately I've been attempting to cross Queens Boulevard at 69th Street. I usually wait at least two two traffic lights between
47th Avenue and Queens Boulevard. Yesterday I left 15 mins later and I waited four lights to drive my son to school. On the way back, i.e, going southbound on 69th from Queens boulevard, the traffic going northbound was backed up from Queens Boulevard to 52nd Road -- all because there's now only one lane on the service road, which leads on to the BQE. Never do I see a bike in that damn bike lane!

Anonymous said...

we need another law

Anonymous said...

thank god Jimmy Van Bramer can't run for office again -- thank god for term limits i pray we get another counselman/woman that knows what the hell they are doing regarding everything -- and try I have said this from the beginning that the bike lanes were a very bad idea and with snow who is going to shovel JVB I doubt that very much or our idiot Mayor -- two peas in a pod -- maybe JVB will do another photo-op with him shoveling - lol

Anonymous said...

I think we can all see the problem here, it was obvious from the get go. When deBlaz was on the news over the summer declaring that he was going to turn the "Blvd. of Death" into the "Blvd. of Life" this bike lane nonsense had "political dog and pony show" written all over it. Why would he want to waste time and funds on fixing things like POTHOLES which thousands of us suffer through each day when he can put those funds to something more grandiose as the politically expedient bike lane fiasco?? Bike lanes on QB is supposed to be a big feather in his cap, along with the Vision Zero nonsense and of course he is on the news now touting how much safer we are thanks to HIM. YEAH OK!!!
I am sure that some of you on here are also familiar with Sunnyside Post. In case you missed this one, read this and take a look at just how negatively the bike lanes are affecting daily life over there..
... As bad as it is, now that the DOT is so heavily vested into this crap, they are determined to bring the traffic jamming bike lanes all the way down. Queens Crap indeed! I am on Queens Blvd in Forest Hills and the thought of losing at least half the metered parking spots we have on QB to install the bike lane is sickening. The area is saturated and parking is a nightmare, we can't afford the loss, not to mention the countless people that will be circling and circling around looking for parking when they could have used a perfectly good lane that was painted green so bottle collectors can rummage free. And why is there a walking path included in it as well?? Hello!! We like to walk on SIDEWALKS, near shops and offices, not in the middle of traffic!!!
I love this website because most of you "get it." I ran into a couple of nutjobs on Edge of the City blog who think the bike lanes in Forest Hills are great and that we should all give up our cars because we live in "the city." Clearly that came from a transplant who couldn't afford Manhattan, because although part of the city, Forest Hills is not "the city." Most residents here rely on a car at some point, Queens is not as easy to navigate as Manhattan. While biking as transit might be a slightly better option in Manhattan, it doesn't work here - things are more spread out and its not practical. And even in the best of circumstances, no one is going to ride their bike along QB from lets say Forest Hills into Manhattan, at least not often enough to inconvenience THOUSANDS of drivers daily. Can anything be done to stop the lunacy?? We need to stick together!

Anonymous said...

The real reason for the increased congestion on Queens Blvd is the Waze app.

Anonymous said...

And how in hell will the city plow these bike lanes??? They are too narrow for a DSNY plow to go through without knocking down all of the lane markers. This is nuts!

JQ LLC said...

" no one is going to ride their bike along QB from lets say Forest Hills into Manhattan

I actually have been commuting to work on my bike for over 20 years (except in winter because that's stupid and insane*)starting at woodhaven blvd., and I am solid proof that these lanes are unnecessary and idiotic, because as of last summer and even in those mild weeks in Nov and Dec, I am still the only one. And I was wondering what the fuck was that extra space for, walking? what the sidewalk isn't sufficient? I think they were primarily filled for those imbecilic joggers who refuse to slow down so they can keep their stride or to sync with their faulty heart monitor watches.

"And how in hell will the city plow these bike lanes???"

They actually do plow them with one of those john deere buggies. That should piss everyone off more.


Anonymous said...

Enough with these flicking bicyclists!

Anonymous said...

Progressives keep trying to turn this city into Amsterdam. Serious FAIL !!

Anonymous said...

Same thing in Florida where I spend lots of time. All over nearby me I see God's green grass is ripped out by a Panzer division of paving contractors replacing it with asphalt bike lanes that no one uses. Follow the money.

I am thinking there is the lure of free Federal money to pay the crony-contractors (aka campaign donors) to put in the bike lanes. The Feds are subsidizing this bullcrap. Never believe a politician who goes on about eco-greenie stuff like bike lanes, they are all liars and phonies.

Anonymous said...

Vote on this issue:

POLL: Do you like the bicycle lanes on Queens Blvd ...

JQ LLC said...

Aren't there baseball fields in Central Park to build pre-k schools on? And why not since the city is going to build a stable which REAL animal rights activists are protesting that they will be cruel to the horses. Or will the yuppie bankers and hipster techies and advertisers and marketers bitch because they can't play softball or quidditch.

JQ LLC said...

That last comment was supposed to go to the newton field story

Anonymous said...

Queens Boulevard & Vision Zero: The Road to Ruin

Our elected and appointed officials were too busy patting each other on the back last week with the overflow of statistical data regarding the version zero programs to mention even one negative impact it has had on the communities and commuters it affected. At best, they failed to realize its impact on the commuters (including bus riders) and the community. At worse, they knew of the problems and still plowed through with it while wasting millions of taxpayer’s dollars in the process.

To begin this saga, Politicians needed a punch line to get the campaign started. The labeled Queens Boulevard the “Boulevard of Death” by simply citing the total number of deaths over 35 years and implying it was just speeding motorists that caused it. The accumulation figure and one year high 13 years ago is a piss poor attempt to justify these ill conceived programs.

First, Queens Boulevard is not the most dangerous roadway in New York City. Accidents, injuries and deaths are not solely from the actions of car drivers. A closer review of all the facts including jaywalking (crossing against the traffic light, not crossing in crosswalks, crossing between cars or in the middle of the block instead of at the corners), inattentive pedestrians (cell phones), intoxication of both drivers and pedestrians, unlicensed drivers, etc… would show a more complete and clearer picture on how these accidents occurred.

They used the same excuse with the Queens Boulevard bike lane program in order to waste $100 million dollars for (at most) 100 bicyclists. These officials mislead the public by saying that no vehicle lanes were taken away to make bike lanes. The fact is that the true “Phase I” of the bike lane project started when the DOT took away the left lane of the east and west service road under the ruse of “safety” by striping over them. The DOT confiscated these lanes in order to put in bike lanes. Besides these areas being empty and unused most of the year, this weekend’s snow storm is another clear reason we need the lanes back for plowing and emergency vehicles.

Another misconception is that these bike lanes were meant for everyone, including bike riding families. This perception was portrayed by the staged bike trip with kids and parents (along with elected officials) in the summer and put on Youtube for all to see. The fact is that these bike lanes are meant for commuters outside of community (Manhattan, Astoria. Rego Park, Forest Hills, Jamaica, etc…). It was specially designed to be the most direct bike route in and out of Manhattan into Queens.

By the way, the tan colored buffer zone in the DOT plans are slated to be filled in with concrete to widen the traffic dividers between the main and service road. These widen islands were designed to be used by both pedestrians and bicyclists. This concentrating of pedestrians and bicyclists into these areas will most certainly increase accidents between them.

Because of these changes, we no longer have a rush hour problem on Queens Boulevard. We now have a rush day and rush evening problem that is affecting everyone who lives along or uses Queens Boulevard. To say that deaths along Queens Boulevard are decreasing because of DOT’s changes is wrong. The reason is the lower speed rate (25 mph) and traffic jams most of the time. So deaths by vehicles will certainly decrease for now. But with our ever increasing population fueled by irresponsible development along Queens Boulevard, accidents and deaths between pedestrians, bicyclists, and vehicles will eventually begin to uptick. By then, all those who will benefit financially and politically from these mega-deals will be laughing it up in their retirement mansions.

There are solutions and the space available to correct these problems now and address all concerns. Yet there seems to be more of a mentality of “circling the wagons” by those responsible in hopes to weather the storm of criticism then have to acknowledge mistakes made in order to fix them.

Anonymous said...

To the last Anonymous poster, YES, YES, YES, THANK YOU! I posted previously on 1/21 and I'm sure you can see which was mine and I couldn't agree more. Enough with using Queens Blvd as a scapegoat! I live right on QB in Forest Hills so I see it all first hand, and you know, it all functions just fine. Yes, of course it is busy, but because of its sheer size and the amount of people using it day and night, of course statistics are going to be higher.

What other road has as many transportation options?? Easy access/intersections with major highways (Grand Central, Jackie Robinson, LIE, Van Wyck, etc.., 4 subway lines, express buses, right along the LIRR line in several areas, OF COURSE statistics of any kind of accident would be higher for such a road. It doesn't mean that it is evil or some ridiculous "Blvd. of Death." If everyone pays attention to what they're doing its fine. Yesterday for instance, with all the snow buildup, the medians are a mess, crossing is a bit harder now but I see elderly women going right across with their shopping carts just fine, why? Because they are PAYING ATTENTION! If they see they can't make it all the way across, they wait at the nearest median until they have the light and then cross safely, THE SYSTEM WORKS!

We don't need any dumbing down of things as long as people are using COMMON SENSE and I don't care how safe deBozo thinks he is making things and how many skewed statistics he tries to offer, you cannot teach common sense to those that just don't have any and plenty of accidents will still happen there, the system will still be circumvented and all we will have in the end is a worse design of QB with backed up traffic and aggression since we are wasting so much valuable space on the bike lanes.