Post Reader Defends “Dangerous” Bike Lane

Dear Steve Cuozzo --

CK___DK_tandem_Bklyn___24_Dec_2005.jpgAuthor and son in 2005
I was ready to ignore your rant yesterday, IDIOTIC DOT TAKES A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE, as another in The Post's reflexive (if well-written) screeds against any incursion into NYC car-dominance, when I came across this line:

"The madness just came to Grand Street as well, where a dangerous bike lane is shunned by any sane cyclist."

I take that personally, seeing as how just last Sunday, my teenage son and I used the Grand Street bike lane to ride from Hudson Square to the East Village.

The lane was great. The green paint, the arrows that mark the lane at intersections, and the strategic placement of the lane between the curb and the line of parked cars, evidently made it clear to our fellow New Yorkers that this was indeed a bicycle lane. For the entire distance, a good 3/4 of a mile, we only had to maneuver around one parked car and a handful of pedestrians.

Otherwise, it was smooth sailing, and a lot safer and more relaxing than the usual Sunday traffic mix. For me, it's no big deal, I'm an adult and have been cycling daily here for 35 years. But for my 14-year-old, who's still learning what it takes to maintain his legal right to the road in the face of swarms of cars and trucks, many of them operated heedlessly, the lane made a big difference.

I know the Post pays you to ridicule anything that deviates an inch from the USA-SUV norm; but how you can call the Grand Street bike lane dangerous is beyond me.

Oh, I almost forgot to mention where we were biking that day: to a movie house on East Houston Street to see "Man on Wire," the documentary film about Philippe Petit's 1974 wire-walk between the Twin Towers. The film is a testament to the human spirit and imagination -- the same spirit, I would say, that animates me as a cyclist, and the same imagination that is, finally, guiding the new DOT to create a bit of safe space for non-motorized vehicular travel in New York City.


Charles Komanoff (father of two, a New Yorker since 1968)