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In your opinion has Biking become more popular in NYC over the last 5-10 years?

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In your opinion has Biking become more popular in NYC over the last 5-10 years?

Old 01-18-12, 09:03 PM
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bikecommuter99
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In your opinion has Biking become more popular in NYC over the last 5-10 years?

I have heard/read that biking is becoming more popular in NYC - is this true?

Thanks.

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Old 01-18-12, 09:36 PM
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Number of bicycle commuters has more than doubled
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Old 01-18-12, 10:04 PM
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Have you tried riding the Westside Greenway on a nice warm day? No doubt!
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Old 01-18-12, 10:43 PM
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Until a few months ago I was lucky if I was on a bike once a month now I commute on it every day so we got one more bike commuter on the road. I also live in an area where not too many people ride bikes so it is a bigger step for me to start riding than if you are in an area where theres a bike lane every block.
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Old 01-19-12, 09:25 AM
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Not opinion: fact. Tons more bikes in NYC, with bike stores doing quite well in a down market. Walking in Manhattan ten years ago it was unusual to pass more than a couple of bikes locked up, and most were delivery bikes. Now they are everywhere: you can count dozens on an average block in the Village, LES, Soho or Chelsea, and plenty uptown and in the FD as well. The increase has been mostly in the last 5-6 years.

We are looking more like Philadelphia, except for the taller buildings and not rioting when we win sports championships.
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Old 01-23-12, 09:25 PM
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My time frame is 15 years since the last time I road NYC. And the number of cyclists that you see on any given day is just crazy compared to back then.
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Old 01-30-12, 04:17 PM
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Meanwhile, it seems like fewer and fewer people are riding out here on Long Island, where the roads are supposedly so much more conducive to biking. The truth (for me) is that it's too dangerous with so many people texting and jabbering behind the wheel. Fortunately, my bike commute is only a mile or two each day.
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Old 01-30-12, 07:32 PM
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There are talks about a bike rental program where people can get picks at certain bike rack locations and lock it back up somewhere closer to their destination at a different part of the city.
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Old 01-30-12, 08:43 PM
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definitely lots more. I've been riding for a long time and the last few years have exploded. I used to be the only rider on Navy St in Brooklyn, now there are lots. The first few time I rode 9w and the GWB I was the only one there. That was a VERY long time ago, maybe 40 years.

But even over the last 10 or so, it just looks like a lot more people are riding. I commute on 1st Ave from the Manhattan Bridge and there is a steady stream up to around 23rd St, where it drops off. It is of course mostly a young crowd. Obviously I don't quite qualify for that crowd. You used to be able to sign up for the 5BBT on the day of the event. Nowadays you need to enter a lottery. The bike lanes invite people to ride and they do.
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Old 01-31-12, 08:46 PM
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I should mention too that my unscientific counts of cyclists over the Manhattan Bridge when I take the subway have gone steadily up. When I first started doing this 4 years ago, 10 - 15 cyclists on a trip across the bridge would be the norm in nice weather. Spring was the busiest, with a drop-off when the weather got hot. This past year it was always 20-30 each trip across. The most I had ever seen was 34 over the prior 3 years, on one trip home to Brooklyn on a nice September day in 2011 I counted 61, a veritable traffic jam!

So yes, biking is way up.
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Old 02-01-12, 03:01 PM
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You talkin'a me? Yeah, we got more bikes in NY. You gotta problem wit' dat?

It is going to take some time for motorists & pedestrians to get used to it, as well as bike riders to learn when to be patient and accommodating, and when and how to express their ire. There's a lot of jostling going on right now, between riders, walkers, drivers, City Hall, the police & businesses. It is fascinating to see how the city learns to handle this change.
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Old 02-02-12, 12:15 PM
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Originally Posted by bikecommuter99 View Post
I have heard/read that biking is becoming more popular in NYC - is this true?

Thanks.
It varies by social class.

I see more bicycle commuting and use by wealthier individuals that can live in low crime areas near where they work. I also a lot of use by individuals I would speculate are illegal immigrants possibly because they are not able to get a driver's license. People get delivery of meals usually delivered by bicycle or electric bicycle ridden by someone who is probably working illegally.

Intense enforcement of motor vehicle laws, such as not riding on sidewalks, applied to bicycles in poor black areas seems to be discouraging bicycle use there.

See: Bikes Yikes chapter of the book Arrest Proof yourself (based on South Carolina law)

https://books.google.com/books?id=TTG...page&q&f=false

Police stop bicyclist for not having headlight, bicyclist eventually shot.
https://abclocal.go.com/kabc/story?se...les&id=8514424

Please do not comment on if the shooting was justified, I only point this out to show that bicycling is more problematic in poor areas do to police enforcement of motor vehicle rules.
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Old 03-06-12, 07:05 AM
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I think in order for cyclists and motorist to coexist peacfully the law does have to become more strict for cyclists. Motor vehicle laws are understood and obeyed by [most] motorists while bicyclists are un predictable. "Is that guy going to stop at that read light or am i going to smash into him as i pass my green?"
The guy that was shot on his bike was shot for evading police and inevidable arrest. Though it seems LAPD are becoming famous for mistaking any hand movement for reaching for a gun. He wasn killed for riding a bike without a headlight. People in poor areas have to live by the same rules as everyone else. The problem is that they can't or dont't want to and thats why it sucks so bad to live there.
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Old 03-10-12, 10:36 AM
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Originally Posted by Papa Tom View Post
Meanwhile, it seems like fewer and fewer people are riding out here on Long Island, where the roads are supposedly so much more conducive to biking. The truth (for me) is that it's too dangerous with so many people texting and jabbering behind the wheel. Fortunately, my bike commute is only a mile or two each day.
The fact is that LI is NOT VERY bike friendly. I ride all along the South Shore from Oceanside to Bayshore and rarely see a painted or marked bike lane. I do about 2500 miles a year on my road bike. Yet every time I ride and move into a traffic lane to turn or pass parked cars some driver will honk or curse at me. They yell at me to "Get off the road". I wear highly visible clothing and use hand signals at all corners to let drivers know my intentions but they still try to push me off "their" road. There are very few "Share the road" signs and virtually no effort to educate drivers. I also see many cyclists riding against traffic or with no lights at night or riding with their earphones in. There really needs to be public service announcements educating cyclists and motorist. LI is not very rider friendly. Its hard to believe and very sad that Manhattan is actually more bike friendy than the suburbs of LI. If the congested roadways of NYC can be made safer and more bike friendly then why can't the same be done in Nassau and Suffolk.
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Old 03-11-12, 08:00 PM
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The only place I have EVER ridden a bike on Long Island is in Long Beach/Atlantic Beach from Rockaway. It's OK only because the traffic is so light on the road, at least until you get to the west end. And the laid back beach attitude there helps.
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Old 07-30-12, 10:42 AM
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Sorry to bump an older thread; I hope that's OK. I am newly registered here; and I am just looking around at the threads.

As other respondents have said, there has been a boom in bicycling in New York City during the past decade or so. Others have mentioned the growth in sheer numbers.

Also, the on-street bike lanes have been a great help. Despite the possible occasional quibble that one can have regarding flaws in the design or placement of any given bike lane, it's unquestionable that their existence has had the cumulative effect that drivers now tend to expect bicyclists on the streets.

I don't want to overstate this; it is still true that the majority of drivers are oblivious incompetents. But there is now a noticible minority of drivers who clearly understand that bicycles are a regular part of street traffic. I see evidence of this daily in my commute, and on my weekend pleasure rides.

There also has been a dramatic cultural shift during this time that I'd like to mention. Starting from when I was a kid in the 1970s, up until maybe 10 years ago, whenever I'd try to roll my bike into a deli when stopping to buy a drink, I'd get complaints from the owners, who'd tell me to leave the bike outside. This doesn't happen anymore; it is now almost universally accepted at the city's delis that a bicyclist can roll his/her bike into the store for a moment, while stopping to buy a drink.

Indeed, rolling one's bike into all kinds of stores is now tolerated/accepted. I've done this without incident at fast food places, and at stores like Modell's. I go to a lot of hat stores; and I've had no problems bringing my bike into those places. This is true even at an uptight place like Flight Club on Broadway and 11th St.

So, to me, that's one powerful indicator of the arrival of bicycles in the culture. Speaking as someone who has ridden in New York for over 35 years, I can say that we are definitely living right now in the golden age.

Unfortunately, this golden age has probably already peaked, and is about to end. The current mayoral administration has been visionary about bikes, led by DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, the first DOT Commissioner ever to see that job's mandate as something other than serving the interests of only drivers. Also to be commended is the Parks Department, which, under Commissioner Adrian Benepe, now has open and well-maintained bathrooms in most parks.

I fear, however, that when this administration goes, so will go most of the bike lanes. It pains me to see the misbehaviour of so many bicyclists. When a bicyclist in a bike lane fails to stop at a red light (thereby making crossing pedestrians jump out of the way), that bicyclist is, in effect, making a very public statement in favour of the removal of our bicycle infrastructure. That misbehaving bicyclist is sure to be the subject of dinner-table conversation on the part of the pedestrian and probably of other witnesses. The general public, seeing this irresponsible action, is not entirely wrong in concluding that there is no point in creating more bicycle infrastructure, given how often it is abused.

I take the Williamsburg Bridge every day as part of my commute; and it is so sad/maddening to see bicyclists blithely going west on the one-way eastbound Delancey Street bike lane that leads to the bridge -- despite three large signs that say "WRONG WAY". These people are spitting in the eye of the activists who brought the pressure necessary for the changes that define this current period which I call the golden age of biking. These fools are campaigning for the end of our bike infrastructure.

So, enjoy the golden age while it lasts!
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Old 07-30-12, 11:18 AM
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I attended grad school, and then worked, in downtown Brooklyn from 1981 until 1995. It was rare to see a bike commuter back then. There weren't even a lot of bike couriers/deliverymen.

I had to attend to some personal business in Brooklyn this past spring. I got there early and was eating breakfast at the St. Clair restaurant on the corner of Smith and Atlantic. I was flabbergasted at the number of bikes that rode past while I was eating. The light changed, and it was like the start of a charity event passing by.
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Old 07-30-12, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Ferdinand NYC View Post
I fear, however, that when this administration goes, so will go most of the bike lanes. It pains me to see the misbehaviour of so many bicyclists. When a bicyclist in a bike lane fails to stop at a red light (thereby making crossing pedestrians jump out of the way), that bicyclist is, in effect, making a very public statement in favour of the removal of our bicycle infrastructure. That misbehaving bicyclist is sure to be the subject of dinner-table conversation on the part of the pedestrian and probably of other witnesses. The general public, seeing this irresponsible action, is not entirely wrong in concluding that there is no point in creating more bicycle infrastructure, given how often it is abused.

I take the Williamsburg Bridge every day as part of my commute; and it is so sad/maddening to see bicyclists blithely going west on the one-way eastbound Delancey Street bike lane that leads to the bridge -- despite three large signs that say "WRONG WAY". These people are spitting in the eye of the activists who brought the pressure necessary for the changes that define this current period which I call the golden age of biking. These fools are campaigning for the end of our bike infrastructure.
So, enjoy the golden age while it lasts!
You are unfortunately, as they say, right on the money!
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Old 07-31-12, 09:45 AM
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This forum really needs a "like" button. Nice post Ferdinand NYC
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Old 08-01-12, 01:45 PM
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Hehe! Thanks!
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Old 08-08-12, 10:05 AM
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I don't think there's any question about the steep rise in cycling in NYC and the rest of the US. I'm heartened that much of the increase is in transportation cycling rather than sport or fitness or recreation. The fraction of women on bikes is increasing, which is a good sign. Also, the fraction of non-bike-nuts is a good sign. It just makes sense to these people to ride a bike. They don't start commuting on bike out of love for bikes or cycling. And I'm glad people are seeing the light. It's good for everyone. It's even good for motorists.

I've been slowly building a photo journal of bikes parked outside. Most of the pictures are in Manhattan. If you click on photo details, you can see the locations of the shorts. I love the variety of bikes and the way people customize them. You can get insight into their owners. Some streets are totally packed with bikes.

I think public bike racks have done as much good as bike lanes.
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Old 08-17-12, 10:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Papa Tom View Post
Meanwhile, it seems like fewer and fewer people are riding out here on Long Island, where the roads are supposedly so much more conducive to biking. The truth (for me) is that it's too dangerous with so many people texting and jabbering behind the wheel. Fortunately, my bike commute is only a mile or two each day.
LI here as well. I had given up road biking because of these reasons. I recently watched some youtube vids of a bike tourer that has been all over the world, and from what I have watched so far he only felt it necessary to get on the railroad since he felt unsafe on LI. That spoke volumes to me. Even driving is no fun on LI, it seems I live among a pack of AH's. I may be one too, but not in the driving/courtesy sense.
It renewed my vigor for doing a bike tour just about anywhere but here on LI.
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