Sunday, November 29, 2009

Bike Lanes in NYC

On my way home for Thanksgiving Break i noticed something different about the streets of my neighborhood. Looking out the bus window I realized that there was only one lane of traffic where there used to be two. The "missing" lane had now been transformed into a bicycle lane. At first I thought about the bike lane and felt that it was a stupid idea. I felt that it would probably make traffic go much slower than normal, causing problems for many commuters. It was soon after watching the lanes in use that I realized how much of a great idea this was.

Most people who do use their bikes, whether for recreational uses or as a means of transportation, have to compete with the dangers of traffic. A new bike lane reduces accidents from happening and protects bicyclists. The increased safety this provides may also attract new people to riding their bikes to where ever they have to go. Using a bike instead of a car reduces pollution and carbon dioxide emissions from the air. Encouraging more and more riders to rely on their bikes will all together reduce the amount of carbon emissions that person would normally have emitted. In regards to my original thought about the bike lane slowing down traffic, I was wrong. I noticed that traffic flow was much more smoother. The two lanes before used to hit heavy traffic when it came to merging to another road however kepping the sinlge road prevents this buildup and keeps cars flowing at a much calmer pace.
Once skeptical, I am in great support of bike lanes and hope that the city continues to place them in more and more reads. Its great for the planet and the people.

1 comment:

  1. I too saw these bike paths when i was in the city last week. The traffic seemed to be at a minimum even on black friday. Bikers were able to maneuver easily though avenues and busy streets. I also notices improvements of several subway rails with better more improved lighting, cleaners cars and electronic stop notifier that shows a diagram of where the train would be stopping next. I feel like the city will have more to offer as better ideas arise and that this is only a start.