What to Know
- Cyclists who say the city needs to do more to ensure the safety of riders staged a protest at Washington Square Park on Tuesday
- At least 15 cyclists have died in New York City in 2019 and bikers say they need protected bike lanes throughout the boroughs
- De Blasio said he has ordered NYPD to use all of its tools to clear out bike lanes and continue aggressive enforcement
The recent deaths of cyclists who died in collisions while biking in New York City streets have prompted dozens of protesters to stage a "die-in" at Washington Square Park on Tuesday.
Cyclists say the city needs to do more to ensure the safety of riders. Protesters with bikes laid on the ground, united by their grief, and held up signs with names and ages of those who lost their lives.
"I'm tired of seeing cyclists dying," protester Matthew Wolsky said, "I'd like the mayor and the Department of Transportation to put action behind their words, when they say there's an emergency in the streets, to really do something."
At least 15 cyclists have died in New York City in 2019. In a recent interview with "Inside City Hall", Mayor Bill de Blasio spoke briefly on the danger bicyclists face in the city, saying that Vision Zero led to a substantial reduction in fatalities.
De Blasio also said he has ordered NYPD to use all of its tools to clear out bike lanes and continue aggressive enforcement on speeding and failure to yield.
Wolsky and other bikers say they want a real network of protected bike lanes so they can move across towns and not just short lanes like the ones on 1st or 2nd Avenue.
Most of the protesters were largely peaceful but several people were taken away in handcuffs, including one man who draped himself across the hood of a taxi.
Meanwhile, NYC Council Speaker Corey Johnson says he introduced a bill that would require a "Master Plan" that would set benchmarks for protected bike lanes, bus lanes and pedestrian space.
"We need to break the car culture that is choking our streets and literally killing people," Johnson said in a statement.