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Old 09-17-08, 12:52 PM   #1
Stacy
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NY1 For You: Darkened Manhattan Bike Path Makes Commute More Dangerous

See http://www.ny1.com/content/features/...u/Default.aspx for the video

The Hudson River Bike Path is a convenient way for biking commuters to go up and down Manhattan’s West Side, but a lack of lighting makes one section very dangerous to ride on. NY1’s Susan Jhun filed the following report.
Manhattan's Hudson River Bike Path is a great place to go for a bike ride, but once the sun goes down it's a different story.

Steven Phillips and Sean Nagle both use the Hudson River Bike Path to commute to and from work, and comfortable as they are on their bicycles, they agree that at night riding the path through an unlit section of the Upper West Side can be very scary.

“Once it gets dark, this whole section of the greenway gets really pitch black,” said Phillips.

“You're basically enclosed in on two sides by pretty narrow fences and sometimes there's actually pedestrian traffic coming into the bike path and you really can't see a thing,” said Nagle.

Most of the path is outfitted with streetlamps to light the way, but the unlit section makes for a tough journey.

“I bike eight miles to work and eight miles back and this is the only sketchy part where it's kind of like Russian roulette, just going through this tunnel,” said Nagle.

Looking at the path from above, one can make out a very clear difference between the section of the path that has streetlamps and the section that doesn't. When a NY1 crew went down to the unlit path and turned their camera light off, they were engulfed in darkness.

With nightfall soon falling during the evening rush hour, Phillips and Nagle say accidents are bound to happen.

“A group of rollerbladers almost flattened me one night because my battery had run out on my headlight,” said Phillips. “And they came flying through this section of the greenway and they just couldn't see me.”

“I've actually seen a couple people right here hit a pedestrian pretty hard because there's no light at all,” said Nagle.

The NY1 camera crew almost had an accident when they saw the track, when an unseen cyclist zoomed right through their shot.

Nagle believes the solution is simple.

“I'd just like to see the city make a small investment using minimal investment in terms of monetary terms and put some lights here,” said Nagle.

NY1 asked the Parks Department and the Department of Transportation, which together manage the bike path, and they said they would install lighting.

Until then, bike commuters will be left in the dark.
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Old 09-17-08, 01:05 PM   #2
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How 'bout some guerilla lighting? Tap into a nearby lamp post and string some light bulbs along the fencing on either side. Just need some volunteers with time and the ability to liberate the needed materials.
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Old 09-17-08, 01:12 PM   #3
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it's been like this for a pretty long time now. i would think just some construction style lighting equipment would be enough to help tremendously. i've definitely had some close calls riding though there.
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Old 09-17-08, 01:13 PM   #4
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How 'bout some guerilla lighting? Tap into a nearby lamp post and string some light bulbs along the fencing on either side. Just need some volunteers with time and the ability to liberate the needed materials.


Yeah, that area is pretty dicey. A few spots lately I noticed have lighting issues, glad the press is picking it up!
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Old 09-17-08, 01:25 PM   #5
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I was riding through there last night and there are definitely too many people riding without lights (headlights or taillights), a bit rough.
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Old 09-17-08, 01:47 PM   #6
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This section is actually the reason why I bought lights for my bike. Back when they were doing major construction of Riverside Park South and the bike path was lined with green fabric, it was dark enough to develop film So glad someone has taken the initiative and contacted the media.
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Old 09-17-08, 05:32 PM   #7
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How 'bout some guerilla lighting? Tap into a nearby lamp post and string some light bulbs along the fencing on either side. Just need some volunteers with time and the ability to liberate the needed materials.
I'd do a section, but I'm sure people will just steal the lightbulbs...it would be cheaper to just setup a direct group discount through Dinotte.
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Old 09-17-08, 08:46 PM   #8
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More Dark Spots

96th - 125th has zero lights
After the sanitation plant to dyckmn has perhaps a total of 20 lights, most at the plant area.
from 181st -Dyckman ZERO.

Hey, its not just for bikers, its for safety
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