Peabody award–winning journalist Andrea Bernstein is Senior Editor for Politics & Policy for WNYC News. She has previously served as Metro Editor, Political Director, Director of Transportation Nation, and Senior Reporter.
Letter from Bike Lane Opponents to DOT: Don't Make Us Pursue "Legal Remedies"
Saturday, February 05, 2011 - 02:48 PM
(Andrea Bernstein, Transportation Nation) From the New York City DOT's perspective, the Prospect Park West bike lane was a case study in success -- it was requested and approved by the local community board both to provide a safe passageway for cyclists and prevent speeding. Once installed, the DOT says, it accomplished its goals, moving vast numbers of cyclists from the sidewalks to the bike lane and dramatically slowing dangerous speeding. The DOT says all its data is public, on its website.
And a survey by Councilmember Brad Lander says three quarters of Brooklyn residents support the bike lane.
But for opponents, according to a letter written to Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan by the group's lawyer, Jim Walden, of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, the process has been less than transparent. "PPW residents are imperiled by reckless cyclists with dangerous frequency." That letter did not provide further data, but said without a promise from the DOT to "refrain from making a final determination," on the bike lane "legal remedies" would be pursued.
In testimony before the City Council late last year, Commissioner Sadik-Khan said the lane was permanent, and not an experiment.
Here's the full letter to the Commissioner from Neighbors for a Better Bike Lane.
Walden would not comment on any potential legal action, and the city DOT would not confirm the existence of the letter.
Click the image for a larger version (which you should be able to zoom in on for easy reading convenience).