Thursday, July 3, 2008

Bike lanes unwelcome on Skillman

The bikers form a very powerful lobby. The bike map for our neighborhood was made by the bike groups, led by Transportation Alternatives. Community Board 2 was totally bypassed, informed only after the map was done.

Save Skillman Ave.

Most important: bike lanes on Skillman and 43rd are dangerous for bikes. These are very busy commercial streets, with many stores, trucks making deliveries, cars, school buses from P.S. 150. Cars and trucks double park on both sides of both streets from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., 16 hours per day. If you "calm" Skillman and 43rd, and remove parking, how do we shop? How do stores get their supplies? How do we live? We have to suffer for the pleasure of a few sightseeing bike riders.

The bike lane on 48th Street makes no sense. 48th Street is a bus route, and much busier than 43rd Street. The bike lane should be on 43rd Street. The bike lane should use 39th Avenue from 48th Street to 43th Street, and across 43rd Street to join Skillman on its way to Queens Boulevard. At its June meeting, CB2 overwhelmingly voted for this arrangement, with only two opposed.

Just an idea of how narcissistic the bike rider lobby is, they mapped Vernon Boulevard, a principal Long Island City street, as a bike lane, not 11th Street, which is two lanes in each direction, and not as heavily travelled as Jackson Avenue. Why? "There is nothing to see on 11th Street. Vernon Boulevard is much nicer for bike riders."

There they go again! Save Vernon Boulevard! Save Skillman Avenue!

And as for bike parking, Commuter Outrage has an idea:

New York City Bike Parking

The city should also move quickly to expand its bicycle parking. They should finance it by charging fees for bikes similar to those for cars who use on-street parking.

...we would raise $11,268 per day from New York’s 28,170 bicycle commuters. Over the course of a 260 day work year, that would raise $2,929,680. (or if we want to make the bicyclists pay their fare share and give them no break on the price, we could raise $4,394,520 by charging the full seven and a half cents per hour) We should also consider that we will probably raise more fees than this since this only covers the 8-hour work day, and some people will work longer or do other things after work. That’s a lot of money to put toward expanding bicycle infrastructure in the city.

Great idea! Since bike activists love to come up with suggestions that force motorists to pony up our hard earned money, then why shouldn't they be subject to the same? Someone get Sadik-Khan on the phone, pronto!


Anonymous said...

Wow, actually has a useful thread: this one is on bikes on sidewalks.

How refreshing.

Anonymous said...

Never heard of this street.
2-Who the hell is Lewis Mumford and why isnt this street on any map ?

grvsmth said...

Al Volpe's letter contains numerous inaccuracies. I have posted corrections at

Anonymous said...

You bike nuts are getting a bit tiresome, taking up parking spaces, marking up the streets with your lines, and diverting taxes from something useful like more cops, sanitation, or schools.

Get a life people.

And if you really really care about transportation (and are not simply a front for the developers or politicans for their agenda) you will start to come out with statements linking the problems that overdevelopment has on public transportation.

Queens Crapper said...

From the Queens Gazette:

"The Greenway show was presented by the Department of Transportation's Ryan Russo, who was promoting cycling as "a real transportation choice". He spoke of bike lanes along both sides of Vernon Boulevard that would take up 11 feet of space on a two-way street only 45 feet wide. The route would include an off-street bikeway through Queensbridge Park. But after hearing Russo's talk and seeing the illustrations projected for their enjoyment, board members were skeptical. One, Al Volpe, was doubly so, noting that in addition to taking up space on a narrow street and in the process removing precious parking spots (more than 100) on Vernon Boulevard, the Greenway planners were ignoring the considerably wider 11th Street, one block east. Both Russo and Penny Lee, of City Planning, replied that 11th Street was considered. However, it runs only to Queens Plaza South, where it is blocked by the bridge ramp, while Vernon Boulevard proceeds under an arch and all the way up to Astoria Boulevard. Also, 11th Street is a heavy truck route and therefore hazardous, though trucks use Vernon Boulevard too. Steve Cooper asked why bike lanes are needed on both sides; Russo said that formally, bikers are traffic and must go with the flow. In fact, said Lee, below 45th Avenue there are no bike lanes, only symbols denoting the presence of a bike route. Lisa Deller of the board said a letter could be sent to DOT saying that approval was dependent on beginning the route above 45th Avenue at 44th Drive. But Steve Cooper made a motion to table the matter that was accepted with relief. More work on Greenway remains."

Anonymous said...

Fron now on, its not a 'Greenway' but a 'six million dollar Greenway.'

Kind of puts things in perspective.

And yes, TA, lets hear somethings besides your narrow little bike agenda.

Lets start to hear you discuss the transit network (that is at the point of collapse) that everyone (except you guys) attributes to overdevelopment.

Money = silence


Anonymous said...

You people are nuts. Bikes are ruining our neighborhoods? Maybe instead of asking the inane question of "who the hell is Lewis Mumford" we should ask "who the hell is Al Volpe? Is he in the pocket of the auto industry? Does he own a dealership? Does he sell auto insurance?" Bikes do NOT ruin neighborhoods. Cars do. Who drives a car in New York City anyway? People who are too good for public transportation?

Ridgewoodian said...

ANONYMOUS: Who the hell is Lewis Mumford and why isnt this street on any map?

He was a writer, philosopher, and historian, probably best known for his works on architecture. He's been associated with the New Urbanist movement. Here's an interesting, if somewhat dated, article on him from Harper's via the New America Foundation.

Don't know why it's not on the map.

Anonymous said...

Well, Mr Bike Advocate, you gonna answer a question that is of interest to the community?

I mean, its you guys that are suddenly high profile taking our taxes and marking up our streets telling us where we can or cannot drive. Its seems your buddy Bloomberg thinks that is more important than our kids who go to schools in trailers or our streets that resemble pigstys everytime sanitation suspends a pickup over this bogus holiday or that.

You going to expand from bike riding to something a bit more comprehensive, something a bit more interesting to the community like a transit system that is a the point of rupture from all this development?

..... or does the ice cream money give you a bad case of glaucoma, or is it myopia?

NativeNYer said...

Aww poor car owners have forgotten how to to ride a bicycle and refuse to give up their cars for fear of looking like pansies? Grow the hell up losers, you too crapper!! Us bike riders pay taxes just like the rest of you schmucks, so you get off you high horses and get with the program. Maybe when gas hits $7 a gallon you'll wake up and smell the coffee.

BTW I own a car but use it only on the weekends. It isn't worth it. Plus It's going to be sold at the end of the month. My California friends say to me : " A car in NYC?? Are you nuts?" They're absolutely right!!

Anonymous said...

How dare you bikers mark up our pristine New York streets.

Get a life lazyboy.

Also, why should street parking be free?

Anonymous said...

"BTW I own a car but use it only on the weekends."

Ok, so you, more than anyone, should understand the need for parking. A lot of Queens residents need cars for the weekend. The bus and train services are absolute shit on the weekends, and people need to do things like buy groceries, go to church, visit their relatives, go to the beach, take their kids out, etc.

Anonymous said...

"My California friends say to me : " A car in NYC?? Are you nuts?"

California people used their cars for everything so they have no right to tell anyone that they are crazy for owning one.

Queens Crapper said...

Grow the hell up losers, you too crapper!!

What an intelligent argument. Have a great holiday and try to chill out.

Anonymous said...

Well, they seem to be ignoring three little points -

1. is this bike crap the best way to spend our tax dollars - or should money be spent on little things like shoring up our kids education, etc?

2. why do the bike nuts only talk about bikes, and refuse to EVEN MENTION other transporation alternatives and the impact that overdevelopment has on the NYC transporation network?

3. since the city, which makes a habit of ignoring citizens, is so focused on THIS group, what is the relationship between the political/developer complex and the bike lobby?

So Crappy, continue to bring up the antics of those bike nuts, so we can hit them time and time and time and time again with these points.

Even when they run and try to avoid these issues, they cannot hide.

Anonymous said...

Good points.

The regulars on this board can smell a rat a mile away.

Anonymous said...

A lot of Queens residents need cars for the weekend. The bus and train services are absolute shit on the weekends, and people need to do things like buy groceries, go to church, visit their relatives, go to the beach, take their kids out, etc.

Really? Isnt there a church or supermarket on every other block? Need to go to the beach? Take their kids out? Hmm sounds frivolous to me. Most of the people moving to Queens from other places are moving here for the convinience of living within walking distance of mass transportation, and freedom from owning a car. All those condos going up? They arent because people love living near greek food. Like it or not, cyclists are going to continue to grow in numbers. Sucks for you car owning townies.

Truman Harris said...

"Isnt there a church or supermarket on every other block?"

What borough are you living in? Developers are replacing them all with luxury condos. Pull your head out of your ass and read about the supermarket shortage we have in this city. The people behind this have enlisted bike riding assholes such as yourselves to help them do their bidding.

Anonymous said...

I live in queens. I also own a car, that I pay to park during the week. I havent driven it in over two weeks, as there is no need. The subways and Buses are all I need, though they are often crowded so Ill ride my bike when the weather is nice, though thats mostly to piss off motorists. Ill admit, there isnt a supermarket ON my block but it certainly isnt far enough to warrant driving. The only time I use my car lately is when I simply MUST get to the beach or take the kids to Great Adventure.

Anonymous said...

Hey, if you want to give up your car, no one's gonna stop you. In fact, we're grateful because it frees up a parking space for the rest of us. But some of these bike nazis act like no one in this borough needs a car for work, school, shopping, etc. and they need to realize that what they perceive as reality is not everyone else's experience.

Anonymous said...

"so Ill ride my bike when the weather is nice, though thats mostly to piss off motorists."

Case in point - a classic bike riding nazi. Here I thought people pedaled simply to get from one place to another.

Anonymous said...

The more these folks post, the more people will see that they have hidden agendas.

Wesley Dumont said...

skillman shouldn't have bike lanes cuz it has stores and a school?

Anonymous said...

Bikers should not pay for parking - they should be rewarded for traveling in a way that does nothing to destroy our already fragile ecosystem. And it is dismissive and counter productive to call them "nuts." People who drive cars and trucks need to learn to share the road.

Anonymous said...

Nice comments there Astoria residents calling various bike riding people "bike nazis"?? I dont like bloomberg at all and cant afford, not would i ever live in a condo.These strange connections these people try to make from the neighborhood that we bike riding people are connected to developers is real sad and false.Lets sit down face to face at local meeting and talk civil, if thats possible for some of these folks.Bike's are marking up the dirty streets of Astoria and Queens?? GIVE ME a break.The air in this neighborhood is atrocious all the time, especially now with the humidity.Thats from bikes i guess?I bet no matter how safe i bike and if someone opens their door into me even though i watch like a hawk to avoid them, the driver would be violent after his door knocks me down.ID bet my life on it.But i bet these car folks would like to know today a car in Battery park hit a bunch of pedestrians.ONly in NYC is there pedestrians being hit by large Cars everynight on the news.Must make you proud.Breath in that fresh air.And again i cant STAND bloomberg and his billionaire real estate buddies.Nice community Astoria.Even Astoria park is dirty with tons of broken glass all along the water front and on the BIKE\walk path. I bet these angry locals couldnt sit down and talk and come to an agreement about which streets it would be OK to have a bike path.You can have the Queens blvd of death.Most of the bike riders are just getting by and work jobs that barely pay the rent folks.Your assumptions and generalizations are WRONG.Lets sit down and talk?Name the library or community building.