Daily Bike Forecast — by Bike Snob NYC

October 28th, 2019: Cars And Trucks And Things That Cause Traffic

The rain departs, at least for now:

Monday Weather

Monday Sunny, with a high near 65. Northwest wind around 8 mph becoming northeast in the afternoon.

Monday Night A slight chance of drizzle or light rain after 2am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 52. East wind around 7 mph. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

Sunrise 7:21am

Sunset 5:58pm

This past Friday, an intrepid reporter blew the lid off Friday evening traffic in Manhattan:

This is of course a completely new phenomenon caused entirely by the bus lanes.

Of course if you really want to cause traffic, open up a supermarket:

Traffic was backed up so far that prospective customers were forced to abandon their vehicles and shop at Whole Foods.

So much for breaking the car culture:

Meanwhile, it looks like the NYPD may be passing responsibility for bicycle enforcement on to the DSNY:

Though it's possible they were just helping set up for Bike Kill and a rider on a tall bike came crashing through moments later:

Speaking of making a mess...

Images and videos of delivery trucks blocking bike lanes, sidewalks and crosswalks are easy to find on social media. In some neighborhoods, Amazon’s ubiquitous boxes are stacked and sorted on the sidewalk, sometimes on top of coverings spread out like picnic blankets.

“They are using public space as their private warehouse,” said Christine Berthet, who lives in Midtown Manhattan. “That is not acceptable. That is not what the sidewalk is for.”

Of course, like any transport-related crisis facing an American city, this too is a solvable one that cities abroad are already addressing:

In Paris, freight trucks enter the city at night and deliver packages to smaller warehouses near homes. In the morning, bikes and electric vans haul them to people’s doorsteps. Some neighborhood convenience stores and flower shops double as pickup spots for packages.

In Hamburg, Germany, trucks deliver containers full of packages to a drop-off site. From there, fleets of electric tricycles carry the packages to homes. UPS uses electric delivery vans in London.

Smaller delivery vehicles would help, as would residential loading zones, but you can't expect New Yorkers to sacrifice the free parking they need for the cars they no longer drive because they order everything online, so we can probably expect to find delivery vehicles in our bike lanes for the foreseeable future.

Maybe we'll get there eventually:

Pedestrians also seem far less annoyed and terrified by their two-wheeled fellow commuters, while drivers in cars almost always respect the lanes and buses and trucks regularly wave cyclists ahead before making a right turn. Pedestrians look both ways before crossing bike lanes and jaywalk far less frequently than they do in most American cities.

Finally, you hear a lot from the NYPD about rideouts:

So where does illegal street racing fall on the threat to public safety spectrum?

“Behind the wheel, I’m so focused,” he said. “It’s just me and the car and the road. No radio or any distractions.

Wow, imagine someone who's actually focused while driving!

Ironically they're probably driving more safely than the typical person in an SUV.