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January 25th, 2010

Wasn’t There Going To Be A Bike Lane on Prospect Park West?

Just the other day I was wondering what happened to the Prospect Park bike lane that was supposed to run from Bartel Prichard Square to Grand Army Plaza. I went to a Community Board 6 transportation committee meeting sometime last spring, where the DOT presented their plan to remove one lane of traffic, moved the lane of parked cars off the curb, and put a two-way bike lane where the parked cars used to be.

The plan solved multiple problems: it would help reduce the speed of automobiles on a street where speeding is rampant and it would facilitate biking. At the time, it seemed like it had community support. CB6 ultimately approved the plan and it seemed like it was good to go.

But it’s January 2010 and there ain’t no bike lane. What happened? According to the Brooklyn Paper, Marty Markowitz put the kibosh on the plan just as it was about to go ahead. Here’s an excerpt from the BP story:

But just as the city was about to start building, Markowitz wrote to the city’s top transportation official that called the Prospect Park West lane an “ill-advised proposal that would cause incredible congestion and reduce the number of available parking spaces in Park Slope.”

The Beep’s letter also argued that the bike lane would be especially problematic during the summer surge in foot traffic, when park-goers are barbecuing, attending concerts and participating in many other activities.

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