1. More than 300 volunteers organized by Transportation Alternatives formed a six-block-long “human-protected bike lane” on Fifth Avenue last night, calling on the de Blasio administration to extend the protected bike lane network through Midtown’s busiest streets.

    Fifth Avenue has no bike infrastructure above 26th Street, leaving a large void in the bicycle network where there’s huge travel demand. Protected bike lanes can’t come soon enough: Through the first eight months of this year drivers injured 15 people biking and 28 people walking on Fifth Avenue in Midtown, according to city data.

    Last month, DOT presented a plan to add a second bus lane on this part of Fifth Avenue, but a bikeway was not included. To date, the agency has hesitated to claim street space for biking and walking on these busy Midtown avenues. DOT has stated a vague intention to extend protected bike lanes through the busiest blocks of Fifth and Sixth Avenues but never backed that up with specific commitments, timetables, or designs.

    The hundreds of people taking action yesterday were saying that’s not good enough and took matters into their own hands. The human-protected bike lane occupied two lanes, from 50th Street to 44th Street.

    Fifth Avenue functioned perfectly well while the impromptu bike lane was in effect. People biking quickly gravitated to the new space set aside for them, while car and bus traffic continued apace in the remaining three lanes.

    In a written response posted on DOT’s Twitter feed, Commissioner Polly Trottenberg framed the campaign for a bike lane as being in conflict with the second bus lane for Fifth Avenue. “We did not want to postpone what we see as a reasonably straightforward improvement for buses,” she wrote.

    # vimeo.com/237687793 Uploaded 2,992 Plays 0 Comments
  2. Earlier this summer, DOT filled an 18-block gap in the Second Avenue bike lane in Midtown. But there’s a big problem with the project: On most of those blocks, the new bike lane isn’t protected at rush hour, when the number of cyclists is highest and car traffic is most intense.

    So this morning, Transportation Alternatives volunteers took safety in their own hands, lining up between 45th Street and 44th Street to form a “human-protected bike lane” during the 8 a.m. to 9 a.m. rush.

    In Midtown, Second Avenue was supposed to get “low-profile tuff curbs” — plastic barriers — to keep motorists out of the bike lane during rush hour. (The rest of the day, the space next to the bikeway is a parking lane, which provides protection.) But the agency changed its mind, nixing the treatment “due to safety and accessibility concerns raised during additional design review and product testing.”

    “Without that protection, people aren’t going to be using the bike lane,” TransAlt Manhattan organizer Chelsea Yamada said. “We’ve got 20 to 25 folks here that are using themselves as a substitute for infrastructure. We can’t afford to do this every day, we can’t afford to do that, to put our bodies on the line, but that’s basically what we’re doing every day.”

    (From David Meyer, StreetsblogNYC)

    # vimeo.com/230636028 Uploaded 12.7K Plays 1 Comment
  3. In Park Slope, Transportation Alternatives (and many co-sponsoring community partners) brought out over 1,000 voices to attend NYC's March for Safe Streets, a protest based in part upon the Dutch's 1970s "Stop de Kindermoord" movement or in English "Stop Child Murder".

    # vimeo.com/259874235 Uploaded 1,576 Plays 0 Comments
  4. For people who live west of Flushing Meadows Corona Park, the only way to walk or bike there is to cross 111th Street. But until recently, getting across this street was a death-defying risk, especially for parents with young kids.

    The old 111th Street had five travel lanes and two parking lanes, forcing people to scramble across a wide street with rampant speeding to get to and from the park. Most people on bikes chose to ride on the sidewalk instead of mixing it up with motor vehicle traffic.

    In 2014, a coalition of Corona groups banded together for safer biking and walking access to the park. Working with Council Member Julissa Ferreras-Copeland, advocates from Immigrant Movement International, Make the Road New York, and Transportation Alternatives pushed for a redesign that would narrow the pedestrian crossings and install a two-way protected bike lane.

    Three years later, Mayor de Blasio finally gave the green light to DOT’s safety overhaul of 111th Street. It was the culmination of relentless advocacy by local residents, including the newly-formed collective Mujeres en Movimiento, who had to overcome opposition from local power brokers like Queens Community Board 4 transportation co-chair James Lisa and Assembly Member Francisco Moya.

    With DOT crews wrapping up work on the 111th Street project, local residents went for a celebratory ride last week. Streetfilms’ Clarence Eckerson was there and put together this video tour of the redesigned street and retrospective of the three-year advocacy campaign to make this project happen. Congratulations to everyone involved on a hard-fought victory for safe walking and biking in the neighborhood.

    # vimeo.com/230467041 Uploaded 1,342 Plays 0 Comments
  5. I've been riding a bike in NYC for more than 25 years. When I started, there wasn't much in the way of good bike infrastructure, but in that time I've watched the bike network expand and slowly get safer.

    With recent bike lane additions and enhancements on Jay Street, Chrystie Street, and First Avenue, NYC DOT has pointed out that you can now ride on protected bike lanes almost continuously from Brooklyn to the Bronx. Connecting to other segments of protected bike lanes, with just a few blocks exposed to traffic, you can do enjoyable, low-stress rides of 10, 20, 25 miles on city streets.

    So I pitched the good folks at Transportation Alternatives about doing a small group ride from Brooklyn to Manhattan to the Bronx to Randall's Island to Queens and back to Brooklyn -- about 25 miles. After sketching it out, we estimated that 97 percent of the ride could be done on protected lanes, car-free bridge paths, and greenways.

    Of course, New York still has a long way to go to make cycling safe for all ages and abilities throughout the city. But we are on our way. As recently as 10 years ago, I can remember the huge advocacy effort that went into gaining two meager strips of white paint for bike lanes here or there. Now we are building up to a useable network.

    So come along for the ride, get a good look at the protected bikeways and bridge paths along our route, and meet some of the volunteers who've been working hard to make biking better in New York City. As the soundtrack (which the great Eric Bazilian and Mats Wester generously gave permission to use) goes, "That's a good thing!"

    Also, if you want to see the details of all the turns in this journey, I compiled this map. usatf.org/routes/view.asp?rID=589020

    # vimeo.com/213680801 Uploaded 3,340 Plays 1 Comment

Transportation Alternatives on Streetfilms

STREETFILMS PRO

Streetfilms has done 100 films on the work of Transportation Alternatives. And we're only counting videos that may:

- Showcase TransAlt pressers
- Rides, events or actions coordinated by TransAlt
- Streetfilms which they helped produce

So watch…


+ More

Streetfilms has done 100 films on the work of Transportation Alternatives. And we're only counting videos that may:

- Showcase TransAlt pressers
- Rides, events or actions coordinated by TransAlt
- Streetfilms which they helped produce

So watch videos as old as late 1990s and additional documentation up to Streetfilms in 2005. And this doesn't include various other Streetfilms where TransAlt may have had a featured soundbite by staff or volunteer.

A pretty incredible amount of history.

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