Sunday, February 27, 2011

Brad Lander Op-Ed on PPW Bike Lane

When I ran for City Council one of my goals was to provide a strong voice for transit and livable streets issues.  As it happens, the ultimate winner of the race Brad Lander is doing a pretty damn good job of it.

Here's an excerpt from his Op-Ed in support of the Prospect Park West Bike Lanes from this week's edition of the Brooklyn Paper:

Yes, there has been controversy. But it’s time to accept the facts: Extensive data show the project is a success. The community board asked for it. The vast majority of neighborhood residents support it. The Department of Transportation is proposing a few modifications to make it work even better. Prospect Park West is safer for pedestrians, cyclists, and even drivers.
Let me make one final effort to make the case clear: Community Board 6 asked for this project to calm traffic and provide a safer place to bike (in both directions). The Department of Transportation presented the project to the community numerous times, to hundreds of people, before it was ever implemented, and made changes in response to feedback before laying down any paint last summer.
The Department of Transportation released a six-month report in January, with 67 pages of raw data. Speeding is down. Accidents are down. Injuries are down. Riding on the sidewalk is down. Cycling is up. Overall, commuters using Prospect Park West are up. It takes about the same amount of time to drive down the street, and fears that Prospect Park West would be constantly gridlocked have simply not proven true.

It's sound, well-reasoned and grounded in basic, verifiable facts.  The shrill opponents of the bike lanes could take a few lessons from Mr. Lander.