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View Poll Results: Do you like bike-lanes?
Yes: I try to use them whenever possible. 21 52.50%
No: I avoid riding in them. 1 2.50%
Whatever: I might use one if it's available. 18 45.00%
Voters: 40. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-08-09, 01:35 AM   #1
Commando303
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Do You Like Bike-Lanes?

Do you like bike-lanes? I've decided to post this thread as a poll, so, feel free to post your thoughts, in words, but consider casting a vote, too, if you'd not mind doing so.
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Old 10-08-09, 01:45 AM   #2
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I tend to use them if they're there, unless they're separated by something. I like to ride fast, so bike lanes that I can't merge into traffic out of scare the sh-t out of me due to all the pedestrians and other cyclists.

I really like sharrows and bike lanes with a painted buffer; they provide the best of both worlds. The sharrows add a little extra justification for me being in the road for ignorant motorists, and the buffered bike lanes provide a separated area with an easily accessible escape route.

It's kinda ironic, but given the choice, I'd rather ride with cars. They're much more predictable.
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Old 10-08-09, 05:16 AM   #3
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I like them. There are a few in the most congested parts of Manhattan where you have pedestrians and slow tourists clogging them up, but the rest are fine.

The mere presence of bike lanes is a welcome sign of progress.
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Old 10-08-09, 09:47 AM   #4
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I guess it depends on the alternatives and my mood. I usually prefer using bike lanes but the other day I had to get downtown quickly. I wound up on Seventh Avenue, instead of Broadway, and rather than diddle about Times Square and that pedestrian space I chose speed over so-called safety. It's good to have a bike lane that coincides with my route but I won't necessarily go too far out of my way to use one.
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Old 10-08-09, 11:17 AM   #5
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Businesses like Topeak and Burley aren't getting my business for a child seat or trailer because there's no way I'd load up my toddler for a relatively short ride to Central Park from Astoria here in NYC. They can quote me on this and ask for compensation from the City of New York. I commute by bike daily and the new painted bike lanes haven't changed people's driving or parking habits in Astoria. I can't really comment on the bike lanes in midtown or the upper east side where I work since I can't seem to find them. (the city does a good job hiding bike lanes)

Take it or leave it, the bike lanes I use don't seem to make any difference, so I won't go out of my way to use one. Until there's a paradigm shift and road users start to respect one another, I'll wait for a physically separated bike path before I take my kid out on a bike.

The fact that there are actually some bike lanes out there is a step in the right direction.
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Old 10-08-09, 12:46 PM   #6
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yes and no.
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Old 10-08-09, 02:48 PM   #7
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When i was searching for a route into Manhattan from Brooklyn as a commuter route I looked to use bike lanes as much as possible. Some of the ones that I found were actually good, some weren't as great. The route from Prospect Park to the Manhattan Bridge along Vanderbilt, Dekalb, Navy and the new bike approach made me feel a bit safer in Bkln. I also use Bedford Avenue going the other way when I go towards Sheepshead Bay. For the most part though I don't give it any thought as I've been riding a long time and it won't change my habits. Too often I treat the bike route signs as meaningless, but that is changing.
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Old 10-08-09, 04:29 PM   #8
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In Brooklyn I tend to follow the bike lanes unless they are far out of my path.
In the city, I'm not a big fan of bike lanes on busy avenues like 8th avenue.
Too many trucks and pedestrians disregard them in busy areas.
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Old 10-09-09, 12:02 AM   #9
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Thanks for the replies.

I started this thread from recognition of my somewhat moving sentiments regarding this matter. When I first began biking on the streets, I cherished every bike lane and M.U.P. I encountered; I religiously looked over the 2009 N.Y.C. Bike Map to see where I actually "could" ride, and only wished there were a safe way to get me from home to there (or to the Hudson-River Greenway). As I rode more often, though, I both became reasonably accustomed to motor-cars (not that a taxi zipping by me half an inch to either side won't still demand I get some new shorts), and found I didn't always want to peddle several block east or west to find an avenue with a painted lane.

I still love the Broadway bike lane (south of Herald Square; north, it's a sea of aimless feet crowding the green paint), but I'm more sick, now, of pedestrians wandering in front of me, or standing in the lane, waiting for their light to change, than I am of looking behind my shoulder to see if a car's coming, before I make a turn.

I do still like bike-lanes, and I am (and hope I continue always to be) cautious when riding amidst vehicles — and, sure, nothing beats a greenway along the river, which isn't subject to so many traffic lights — but, for the time being (here's hoping I'm not soon in an accident...), I feel less compelled to hunt for sharrows.

I will say, the only bike-lanes I care for are those that are somehow "protected": I find "signed" bike routes to be a damned joke (just a way for the City to claim it's becoming more "bike-friendly," when all it's doing is wasting steel and labor), and I believe painted lanes without buffer zones are almost pointless (and are sometimes harmful, when they make motorists feel that's the only place on that road where a bicycle is permitted). "Sidewalk–bike-path–parking–traffic" works well for me, the only real caveat being, again, pedestrians who see the pike-path as an extension of the sidewalk. I can't blame the design for this, though — mentalities must be altered.
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Old 10-09-09, 08:00 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazaev View Post
I tend to use them if they're there, unless they're separated by something. I like to ride fast, so bike lanes that I can't merge into traffic out of scare the sh-t out of me due to all the pedestrians and other cyclists.

I really like sharrows and bike lanes with a painted buffer; they provide the best of both worlds. The sharrows add a little extra justification for me being in the road for ignorant motorists, and the buffered bike lanes provide a separated area with an easily accessible escape route.

It's kinda ironic, but given the choice, I'd rather ride with cars. They're much more predictable.
Sums it up for me since I like to ride briskly as well and bike lanes aren't that good for that. I've stated before that for me riding in between the lanes is the safest place for me on NYC avenues since motorists tend to be more predictable. If there's a bike lane that's available and there aren't double parked cars on it then I'll use it but that's not that common in my experience.
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Old 10-10-09, 08:31 PM   #11
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I prefer protected bike lanes, but won't go out of my way to look for 1. The street ones are a joke since drivers double park on them.
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Old 10-10-09, 10:41 PM   #12
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I prefer protected bike lanes, but won't go out of my way to look for 1. The street ones are a joke since drivers double park on them.
Which lends to the danger of being rear-ended as you pull into traffic to avoid such a double-parked (all right: perhaps "standing") car, or a truck unloading supplies (honestly, though where else can they do it? We all b!tch about the trucks [and that is understandable], but I think we appreciate their work when we get off our bikes and walk into stores to buy things).

Last edited by Commando303; 10-11-09 at 11:37 AM.
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Old 10-11-09, 03:06 AM   #13
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Which lends to the danger of being rear-ended as you pull into traffic to avoid such a double-parked (all right: perhaps "standing") car, or a truck unloading supplies (honestly, though where else can they do it? We all ***** about the trucks [and that is understandable], but I think we appreciate their work when we get off our bikes and walk into stores to buy things).
Wow!!! Check out this lively discussion of bikes and people in the Times.

http://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/20...-your-left/?hp

I especially love Robert Sawyer's observations about people.
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Old 10-11-09, 05:30 PM   #14
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I agree with the folks who commented on vehicles being more predictable than pedestrians.

Any time I want to move fast, I'll split lanes or ride on the side of the street with the smoothest traffic flow - regardless of the bike lane, if there is one.

If I'm not in a hurry, I generally take the bike lane and deal with whatever obstacles it presents.

My hope is, over time, the bike lanes will survive politically, and pedestrians will learn/be taught better awareness around bike lanes, and better safely habits in general.
Way too many people listen for cars, but don't look. People with this lazy habit are just asking to end up on their wallet.
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Old 10-11-09, 10:22 PM   #15
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Something I find thoughtless is the placement of (painted) bike-lanes on the right-hand side of avenues — right along the path in which local buses must make stops. (Also, of course, there's the dreaded lane-in-door–zone, but one's disdain for this so reverberates among bicyclists, it need not even to be reasserted.)
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