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(Alex Goldmark, Transportation Nation) The crackdown on cyclists who break NYC traffic law is widespread around the city, but concentrated most heavily on Manhattan's West Side, Downtown, near the East River bridges, and in Downtown Brooklyn according to Transportation Nation's crowdsourcing project and other reporting. That's also where past monitoring has shown the heaviest bike riding in New York City.The most common violation was running red lights, which brings a fine of up to a $270, just as it would in a car if issued by a police officer. (Drivers caught by a red light camera pay a $50 fine.) Riding on the sidewalk was also frequently cited, earning cyclists in our survey $25 and $50 fees, sometimes more depending on the danger it caused.
Mapping the Tickets
WNYC has requested data from the NYPD on the number and locations of cycle summonses several times, starting in March. With no response from NYPD, we asked our readers and listeners to help us map the scope of the crackdown, as laid out in the map above.
This week, the NY Post cited an unnamed police source saying there have been almost 14,000 tickets issued to city cyclists so far this year--a jump of almost 50 percent over the same period last year--and that the tickets are scattered widely around the city but with far fewer in Staten Island and the Bronx. Neither the NYPD nor the Bloomberg administration would confirm to WNYC that those numbers are accurate, but the figure seems probable given our past reporting and other efforts to quantify the crack down. The geography is also consistent with our crowdsourced findings.
Red light running was the most common offense, though riding
"The current light synchronization for 25 mph is not a new timing plan. DOT adjusted the timing for several signals on March 26 on Central Park's drives after an inspection determined that some had fallen out of synch."
Tweaking traffic signal synchronization may not seem like hot news, but it could be a partial solution to the increasingly heated brouhaha over ticketing cyclists in Central Park for running red lights and for one day, speeding. If the lights are synched, then there will be fewer reds to run.
This morning New York Cycle Club's President Ellen Jaffe posted that she had news of the signal synchronization and that there may be other changes afoot in policing of red light running in the park. Transportation Nation is still trying to confirm that with NYPD. We'll update you if we learn anything.
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