25 November 2009

Union Street Gets Newly Painted (If Too Short) Bike Lane

I got my wish.

When I saw earlier this month that the City was laying down a new coat of blacktop along Union Street, from Van Brunt on east, I prayed that this meant they would paint a new bike lane. The Union Street bike lane, one of the oldest in the area, had been in a deplorable state for years, faded and full of potholes. Hurrah! They started painted the lane yesterday. (I even met and chatted with the guy who did it.) Now it's done and it looks great.

One gripe, though. (That's right, guys. We bikers are never, ever satisfied.) The old lane, for reasons I never understood, terminated at Henry Street. The three blocks of Union between Henry and Van Brunt have no lane. I was hoping they'd rectify this. But they didn't. The lane still stops at Henry (see below), meaning the bikers west of the BQE (and there are plenty of them) have to fend for themselves until they reach Henry.

Why is this? The parallel Kane Street a Congress Street bike lanes go to Hicks at least. Plus, there's a bike lane along a length of Columbia to the west. Why not connect to it?


Andrea said...

I'm thrilled as well -- the old bike lane was just plain hazardous. My theory on the shortness is that with all the double-parked cop cars between Hicks and Henry, the city doesn't want the bike lane to take away even more space from drivers.

Winston Smith said...

The DOT did bikers a favor by not putting the bike lane past the police station.

Don't you know that cops, friends of cops, employees of the Police Dept, and their friends and family and their business acquaintances can park anywhere they want. They can park on the sidewalk, in the crosswalk, in the sidewalk part of the crosswalk. They can do this at any time, for any reason.

Painting a bike line past a police station would be just dangerous.