New York City: A Cyclists' Paradise?

Coming as I do from a city where the bike lanes are narrow, full of holes and added at a glacial pace to to endless politics, being back in New York with my bike is a revelation, this city changes so quickly. When they put in bike lanes, they do it fast and they do it well.

There are a few fully separated bike lanes, the gold standard, but even when they are the more conventional lanes paralelling parked cars, they are different than I am used to; there is usually a good three feet between the cars and the start of the bike lane, minimizing the chance of a door prize and perhaps ensuring that in winter there is still some kind of bike lane, and there is a painted buffer between the bike lane and the car lane. This is generous and comfortable.

The lanes are well marked and generally respected, something I did not expect (and which is not universal, the Sixth Avenue northbound bike lane is another story)

Just like last year: the biggest offender for parking in the bike lanes is the US Postal Service.

Hypocrisy, thy name is Poland Springs: a hybrid powered bottled water delivery truck, no mention of the carbon footprint of bottled water.

It is obviously not a perfect system and has a way to go, but I will honestly say that I feel more at home, and safer, on a bike in New York City than I do at home it Toronto. That is a transformation and a wakeup-call.

Tags: Bikes | Biking | ICFF/ New York Design Week

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