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    Joe R.

    Honestly, given the size of Roosevelt Island, it seems like most errands can easily be done on foot. I personally like the idea of making utility cycling more useful everywhere, but in general to me it’s not worth the bother of taking a bike if the trip is less than maybe 1.5 miles each way. Looking at satellite maps of Roosevelt Island, it appears most things of interest are within 1 mile or less of each other-hardly a distance worth biking. I can say the same thing about my immediate neighborhood as well. I have major shopping areas about 0.15 mile, 0.3 mile, and 0.65 mile away. You just don’t save much time biking when things are that close. Walking avoids having to chain up the bike. If I’m carrying more than maybe 30 pounds I’ll take the shopping cart.



    I think you’re missing the goal here, which is to make it easy for people to do local errands by bike, not get a workout in or do a long scenic ride.


    Joe R.

    I don’t live on Roosevelt Island but I was about to say the same thing. At ~4 miles to loop around the island any serious cyclist will need 5 loops or more to get a good ride in. I would imagine doing that day in and day out would get old quickly. In the other boroughs you have a myriad of options. Some of my regular rides cover 25 miles without going over the same street twice.


    Philip Neumann

    I think there needs to be signage telling pedestrians (and tourists staying at hotels in the Queens Plaza area) that the bike path between Crescent and 29th Street is not a shared greenway corridor, and that pedestrians have a very usable sidewalk five feet over. It’s frustrating to have these people ambling in and out of the bike path, but the DOT’s poor design and construction of the bike path, shared bike/ped lane after Crescent, and the bridge entrance (unnecessarily sharp turn, poor signage, etc) is by far the biggest culprit in why pedestrians seem confused by what’s going on in that area. Aside from that, it looks gorgeous over there – especially compared to what it was like five short years ago.



    Am I missing something? Roosevelt Island is way too small to be really interesting for bicyclists. 15-20 minutes and you completed one loop and looked at the handful of things that are of interest. For us residents it is a handicap that we are not directly connected with Manhattan. Taking a crowded tram/subway with a bike sucks and taking the Queensboro bridge and having to either ride over the grate or walking on the sidewalk across the Roosevelt Island bridge adds quite a bit to your commute. It’s really not the best place to enjoy bicycling, IMHO.



    Is this a joke? Have you never see a hand-sketched conceptual project rendering like this before? This is standard fare, and it’s fine. Just because they’re generic looking stick figure people (as opposed to what, hipsters in pork pie hats? Park Slopers pushing McLaren baby carriages?) does not detract from the usefulness of the rendering. It’s a dumb thing to fixate on. Focus on substance, not style.




    Philip Neumann

    You could also add some Ben Hur style spikes to the side of your wheels/pedals and maybe accidentally flatten some of those motor vehicle tires too.


    walks bikes drives

    And what exactly is that charge?



    everybody knows that the FDR is not allowed for trucks. Ever see the movie Die Hard 3. reference to garbage trucks on the FDR.



    If there’s a place in NYC with good transit and so few cars the yuppies will price everyone else out.



    I don’t see that. Most people here probably at least have licenses. The only really common agreement seems to be about the extent to which cars are employed at the expense of other street users. Most other related topics hardly seem to have a uniform body of opinion.


    Brad Aaron

    The headline refers to a specific type of crash on a specific roadway, not all truck drivers in all crashes.

    If you’re a professional driver who disregards posted warnings and slams your vehicle into a stationary bridge, you’re an idiot.

    That’s all.



    Better idea: let’s retire the word “accident” to describe negligent/antisocial behavior. Ignoring signs that it’s your job to heed is kinda idiotic when you know you’re driving a vehicle without much clearance.



    I think it would be better for the general dialogue not to describe all truck drivers who get into accidents as “idiots”.

    Agreed. Of course, Streetsblog hasn’t done that. So not sure why you felt compeled to make such comment?

    And yes, if you drive a truck on the FDR (which forbids trucks) and you crash into the overpasses (which are too low for trucks) then yes, you are an idiot.



    I don’t see how. Dress and activities speak for themselves. I’m not imagining the lack of awnings, socialization, or diversity (not racial, but: no old people, no fat people, amenities, cultural, even architectural). Maybe we get a little bit more into supposition if point out the commerce all seems to be “high-end,” this being a largely poorer neighborhood presently. Of the three clearly legible words written in the drawing, two of them say “shop.” Subliminal much?

    This is all in a neighborhood with an established streetscape, mind you, and there is little or no continuity with that. The difference between this and other recent development projects is most recent development projects impacted industrial areas, not residential ones. Maybe that’s where some of this aesthetic is coming from.


    Ferdinand Cesarano

    If you define “evil” in this case as “evincing sociopathic levels of aggression”, then I as a daily bike commuter would say that the huge majority of drivers merit that description.

    Furthermore, virtually all of them are incompetent, thanks to low standards of licensure.



    This is Streetsblog! Everyone one who drives ever is either an idiot or an maniac.*

    *I’m a cyclist who has to deal with drivers on a daily basis. So I know they’re not all evil.



    Let us hope that MTA planners have the foresight to provide pedestrian and cycle paths that are fully separated rather than the usual cluster f—ks that exist on most other crossings in this city. That shouldn’t be all that difficult when this proposed project comes in at tenths of a penny to the dollar in the current capital plan. Referring, of course, to the Times article about access on the Verrazano.



    Stoops take space that could be used for parking.


    Ian Turner

    The appellation seems appropriate in this case, trucks are not even allowed on the FDR.



    I think it would be better for the general dialogue not to describe all truck drivers who get into accidents as “idiots”.



    Also those buildings don’t have stoops so I’m not sure how there can be people chatting on them.



    They don’t want that detail. That’s my point. I think you’re reading too much into it. Don’t get me wrong, I agree with you that this development will likely suffer from “an utter absence of any New York color” just based on recent development projects.



    Why would s/he want that detail? It adds nothing to the concept, and only opens up the possibility for turning it into a racial hot potato. Lack of faces is ethnically nondescript. From a political standpoint, that’s pretty understandable irrespective of the plan.


    Anxiously Awaiting Bikeshare

    And you could say the same thing about drivers and helmets, or soccer players and helmets, or cheerleaders and helmets, or the elderly showering and helmets. Going down stairs and helmets.

    There are thousands of activities that could be made ever so slightly safer with a helmet but there aren’t and shouldn’t be laws forcing such a thing, especially when it would discourage an active activity when so many people are dying of sedentary diseases.


    Aunt Bike

    I don’t see that. It looks like a typical drawing of a proposal for some street changes.



    Once again, the NYPD is essentially throwing up its hands and saying it can’t (or won’t) do anything to make the streets safer, so cyclists better protect themselves. It’s as if the CDC’s sole response to Ebola were to require every American to wear a face mask.



    The presence of faces or the lack thereof are indicative of the level of detail the guy who made the sketch was going for.



    Here’s another one:
    Hong Kong’s pro-democracy protesters have created an unexpected bonus
    for Hong Kongers: a pedestrian oasis in the heart of the city



    What do people’s faces have to do with anything? It was the dress and the activities I was referring to. There is an utter absence of any New York color (e.g., people chatting on stoops, old men playing checkers, whatever). Any time there is a discernible activity, it seems to involve shopping.



    How did you get that from a cartoony sketch in which the people’s faces aren’t even drawn in?



    I don’t understand why this minimal treatment stops at 72nd. There is PS 199 at 70th which already has some “Safe Route to Schools” treatments, and I am certain that the street South of 72nd is still just as dangerous.



    Yes, I am too. On the 8th & 9th ave bike lanes that’s just what they have. But not on the 1st & 2nd ave lanes (except for major cross streets). The design on 8th & 9th is much safer for peds & cyclists both.



    Re Broadway Junction development plans, “A rendering from a City Planning study depicts a new and improved Pitkin Avenue.”

    Jeeze-ass, they can’t be serious with that picture. Everyone looks like soulless yuppie on a Saturday afternoon jaunt to the mall.



    Wow, it “only” took 9 months for the DA to decide to charge Cooper Stock’s killer with something as limited as “failure to exercise due care”.


    Mathew Smithburger

    The civilian government through elected officials set public policy in New York City and not the NYPD. If the NYPD continues with the tickets blitz and the not enforcing the speed limit and not investigating cycling deaths the cycling community in this city should start strongly advocating for a reduced overtime policy and pension reductions for the NYPD. Let’s see how fast they snap in line.



    I think it’s a little odd that you would be so gung-ho for a helmet for safety, yet not also use wider tires. I more or less accidentally ended up on 60mm tires, loved them, *and they were faster for my daily commute* (racing speeds involve much more air resistance on tires, hence their use of skinny tires; rolling resistance, comparing good fat tires with good thin tires, fat rolls better).

    What you get from fat tires is less risk from road cracks and slots, immunity to slotted storm grates, protection from potholes and curbs, and less road vibration. Plus they hold air much longer between pump-ups, and they protect your rims far better (I haven’t trued a fat-tired rim in years).

    You could do both, of course — I use daytime running lights AND I use fat tires, both of those for rational safety reasons, and I use a helmet on a bicycle but not in a car, because I am American and we have a culture of irrational attitudes towards risk. If I were rational, I would also wear the helmet while driving, and perhaps while walking.


    Cold Shoaler

    I’m all for people freely making their own choices as well. I’m also for the conversations about those choices being fact-based. All too often I encounter people who site some anecdote where “my helmet saved my life”, or uses some incident where their helmet hit something as proof that it protected them. I’ve had crashes where my head did NOT hit an object because I was NOT wearing a helmet. Most people presume the safety benefits of helmets extend to all types of impact. They do not. Most people also seem to think that the benefits of bike helmets are on the order of seatbelts in cars or not smoking. I wish someone would show me some data to support that view; I’ve yet to see it.

    The you-should-wear-a-helmet as default view of so many ‘mericans is a symptom of 1) our cultural windshield perspective and 2) the extreme sports/bikes are for racing marketing of cycling apparel.


    Cold Shoaler

    I think this is what you would have to wear for any meaningful protection:



    “saved me from plenty of scratches, bruises, “

    How do you protect other parts of your body from these problems?



    Actually the no turn on red is pretty ingrained in most NYC drivers.


    walks bikes drives

    Actually, I do often run my lights during the day, especially on cloudy days, and was running them on that day. And studded tires? I ride a road bike for my commute. Have yet to see studded tires in 25s. But studded tires would weaken the tires grip on the dry pavement, giving greater likelihood of loss of control, especially at higher speeds. In my years of riding, this was the first hit of black ice I’ve had in NYC. And yeah, there was more safety gear that helped me in that incident. Simply, between my leather jacket and my helmet, I walked away with a broken pedal, and nothing more.

    Again, I’m not saying it saved my life. I’m not even saying it saved a hospital visit, or even a doctors visit. I’m just saying I avoided injury which would have been guaranteed the way I went down if I wasn’t wearing a helmet. You choose to do what you want to do. I don’t advocate them by law for the simple reason of, if you get killed because you chose not to wear a helmet, where the helmet could have prevented your death, that’s on you. I can live with it.

    Cars speeding and not yielding to pedestrians in crosswalks, however, that doesn’t affect the person making the choice in the same way it affects those who have no choice.

    On the that same frame of mind, I also feel seatbelts should be mandatory, for the automakers, but enforcement of the driver wearing the belt, that’s a waste of resources that could be used for a greater good. However, I feel naked not wearing one, and even wear them in the back of cabs.

    I guess you could say, I’m pro choice. :)



    Changing the culture by bringing in the Commissioner from 20 years ago?

    Moving toward safer streets for non-auto modes by bringing in the Commissioner from Los Angeles?

    Did nobody see this coming?


    walks bikes drives

    While I agree that helmets SHOULD be designed better, to protect against rotational forces, etc., I do see them as beneficial. Right, there are limited situations where a helmet will save your life. But they exist. And there should be more, but for that, we need better designs.


    Cold Shoaler

    Your helmet sliding across the pavement exposed you to torsional skull and neck injuries, which bike helmets are not designed or tested to prevent. It makes more sense to wear a helmet when you drive or climb a ladder.



    And why a helmet, instead of, say, studded tires? And do you use daytime running lights? Those have actually been studied in something approximating an honest test (and they helped).

    The helmets obsession for bikes is not terribly rational. There’s other tested safety measures that are apparently better that we don’t care about, and we don’t seem to care at all that helmets might help in a car or while walking — only on bikes, even though all those risks are in the same give-or-take-a-factor-of-two ballpark.



    Like the double parking law? Or the driving on the right law? Or the not tailgating law? And the red light law, the not blocking intersections law, the no turns on red law? Such success.


    walks bikes drives

    I’m all for the split phase that that would require…



    Yeah, I did overlook those islands on the other side of the street. But I still don’t think we should be requiring (or expecting) the elderly or disabled to walk ~30 yards out of their way (and make 2 extra street crossings in the process) just to reach the single pedestrian refuge island on “the other side of the street” that ostensibly exists for their benefit.