Staten Islanders Displeased with Bike Lanes


People complain about bike lanes elsewhere in the city, too, but Staten Island seems to have more trouble with them than most. The Staten Island Advance tells us that new bike lanes are planned for the borough even as “half of the paint forming the Bay Street [bike] route has worn away” because of traffic. In one of the Advance‘s earlier reports on the lanes, a commenter pointed out that some of them were painted during the winter, “in freezing temperatures,” then “covered with salt and snow and plows. Now that the Warm temperatures are back and the asphalt has expanded. Most of the markers are gone.”

The Island seems to have a lower concentration of cyclists than bike-happy Brooklyn, while its car density is comparable to that of towns in Jersey, though the city keeps pushing mass transit at them. The Advance points out to critics who would like to see the bike-lane money diverted to improve roads that most of it comes from federal funds specified for bike lanes. Nonetheless councilmember James Oddo, who has been critical of the lanes in the past, says, “I’m not quite sure what the obsession is with bike lanes in this administration. I just wish they were obsessed with smooth streets.”

The sympathies of Advance commenters are predictable. “I wish gloomberg would ride a bike in the city,” says one. “it would be a real shame if he got crushed by a truck and turned into a pavement pattie though, but I guess that would take care of the term limits thing.” “SI motorists don’t obey traffic signs and signals let alone lines in the street,” says another. Queens Crap’s attitude isn’t in doubt either: their coverage is headlined, “Stupid Staten Island bike lanes criticized.”