Protected Bike Lanes Rolling Into Upper West Side

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    The proposed plan for the Columbia Avenue bike plans, according to the NYSDOT.

    More than 100 Upper West Siders roared in applause when the community board voted last night to install a protected bike lane on Columbus Avenue this summer.

    Construction should start within the month and take one to two more months, the West Side Independent reports.

    Columbus Avenue lanes will be narrowed to accomodate the new path. The avenue's current  three12-feet wide moving lanes will be cut to 10 feet wide and the east-side Parking Lane will be narrowed from 11 to 8 feet, according to the DOT's plan.

    Under the proposal approved yesterday, the street -- a total of 60 feet across -- will include a six-foot-wide bike path on the East side and a five-foot buffer lane between that and the floating parking lane.

    Further, at the busiest intersections on 77th, 81st, 82nd, 86th, 91th and 96th Streets, there will be "pedestrian refuge islands" and separate bike traffic signals and left-turn lanes -- and bike lane advocates are eager for the construction to get underway.

    "Biking is something this city has fallen in love with," actor and Upper West Side native Matthew Modine said at the meeting. "If I hadn’t had a bike I don’t know what I would have done. I had no money. I couldn’t even afford a token," .

    The community board has said that the bike lanes are a test project, however, and will be reassessed in six months.