East Side Bikeway - Much improved
After avoiding the East Side bikeway for years as it was a poor cousin to the West Side, I've taken it many times in the last few weeks. First off, the bikeway now runs from Canal St off the Manhattan bridge down Allen/Pike all the way to the river. Maybe it always did, but I never noticed it. Second, once on the East Side bikeway at Pike, the ride is still along the street under the FDR, but at least it is nicely paved. There is construction along the river for a new bike lane. At the piers, where Basketball City is located, it is in terrible shape, but also this will be fixed. From there on up, they've paved the bikeway next to the FDR so it is now smooth and very wide, plenty of room for people to ride two abreast in BOTH directions and still have someone pass through the middle.
But even better, the esplanade next to the river is beautiful and just as wide. There are bridges over the little coves that you can also go around. I didn't see any signs saying to dismount, or No Bicycles, so I ride on it. The little stage is always active in the evening. This is all great up to the ConEd plant around 14th st, where it still gets very narrow, barely enough room for two bikes, or even a bike and a runner, to pass. Stuyvesant cove looks the same, and the area north of the gas station at 23rd is still a mess.
I'm hoping that when the road past the UN gets built, they'll also fix the area around the building at the Water Club. The ferry terminal will always be there, so we'll have to deal with that.
As for the stairs in the 80s, I doubt that will ever change.
I really really hope the East River Bikeway to be expanded ASAP from 34th street up to be connected to the one that starts at 60th street. The city streets between 34th and 60th, which we have to use before the Bikeway is completed, is one of the busiest and most hectic areas to ride. The stairs at 81st st. is a nightmare. What one could do is to exit at 78th st. via the pedestrian bridge, ride a few blocks northward, then get back to the river.
Edit: The South Stree Seaport area is a nightmare with the crowds.
P.S. What I like the East River Bikeway better than the Hudson Greenway:
--Closer to the River :thumb: (no blockage between bike path and the river)
--More shaded areas :thumb: (Hudson Greenway is a baking pan!)
Just the road surface is too bumpy and rough in some parts, and some parts are too narrow or tricky.
Well, at least there's apparently now a plan to make a plan to fill the gaps in East River Greenway:
Don't hold your breath for its completion though:
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