Brooklyn Boro

City cuts ribbons on two major Brooklyn bike lanes

New lanes run along Flatbush and 4th avenues

November 5, 2020 Editorial Staff
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City officials and advocates on Thursday cut ribbons on two major protected bike lane projects along two of Brooklyn’s busiest corridors, Flatbush and 4th avenues.

The lanes add another 3.2 miles of protected bike lane capacity to the borough, bringing this year’s total new protected bike lane mileage to 15 miles citywide.

The Flatbush Avenue PBL runs from Grand Army Plaza to Ocean Avenue in both directions, providing direct connections from Downtown Brooklyn and the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges to Prospect- Lefferts Gardens, Flatbush, East Flatbush and beyond.

Cyclists rode along the 4th Avenue PBL on Thursday.

The Flatbush Avenue lanes, which provide increased access to Prospect Park, also allow easier bike access to the Brooklyn Botanic Garden, Prospect Park Zoo and the Brooklyn Public Library. They run .8 miles each way.

Flatbush Avenue is one of Brooklyn’s most popular biking throughways; on weekends, more than 500 cyclists travel the avenue alongside high volumes of vehicular traffic. DOT in September reduced the speed limit on this section of Flatbush Avenue from 30 to 25 MPH.

Officials and advocates, including DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg, center, and Borough President Eric Adams, center left, participated in the ribbon cutting for the Flatbush Avenue lanes at Grand Army Plaza.

The 4th Avenue PBL completes a three-year effort to add protected lanes to the entire corridor from 65th Street in Bay Ridge to Barclays Center in Prospect Heights. In both directions, 4th Avenue now has over 8 miles of total protected lanes.

The 4th Avenue lanes, which run .8 miles each way, provide cyclists with safer access on a crowded and critical corridor. The City plans to further build out and beautify the roadway, which is a Vision Zero Great Street, a Vision Zero Priority Corridor and the initial Brooklyn path of the annual New York City Marathon.

DOT worked cooperatively with MTA New York City Transit, as the 4th Avenue project had to be coordinated around major track and station improvements along the R train, which runs beneath the entire length of the new lanes.

Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon spoke at the ribbon cutting for the Flatbush Avenue lanes.

“Brooklyn is getting a real enhancement today, as cyclists from as far as Sunset Park and Flatbush have now gotten easier and safer bike access they deserve to get them to Downtown Brooklyn and the East River crossings into Manhattan,” said DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg, who led the ribbon cutting ceremonies. “As a regular rider, I can say the lanes are already humming, like they were always there.”

“I’m so pleased that DOT has completed the protected bike lane projects on Flatbush and 4th Avenues, which ensure safer streets for all New Yorkers along these busy corridors,” said Assemblymember Jo Anne Simon. “Biking in New York should be fun, accessible, and safe, but it takes work to make that a reality and the new protected bike lanes are a solid step forward.”

Cyclists rode on the Flatbush Avenue PBL along Prospect Park on Thursday.

“At least twenty cyclists have been killed by cars this year in New York City,” said State Sen. Zellnor Myrie. “At a time that people are seeking alternatives to mass transit, and when delivery workers are even more essential, it is imperative that the DOT continue to do more to realize Vision Zero and meet its commitment to keep New Yorkers safe on our streets.

“I am pleased with these new protected bike lanes and look forward to continued improvements to the PBL network across the city,” he added.

“Especially as more and more New Yorkers are turning to cycling as a primary form of transit during the pandemic, we need more infrastructure like this to keep people safe and moving around the city,” said Councilmember Brad Lander. “Thank you to Commissioner Trottenberg and the Department of Transportation for making these lanes a priority and seeing them through to completion.”

Learn about the Vision Zero initiative here.

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