September 9th, 2019: To Take Back The Sidewalks We Need To Take Back The Streets

Pleasant cycling conditions today for your commuting convenience:

Monday Weather

Monday Partly sunny, with a high near 71. Northeast wind 7 to 9 mph.

Monday Night Partly cloudy, with a low around 63. East wind 3 to 7 mph.

Sunrise 6:31am

Sunset 7:15pm

All the better to shake out the legs after yesterday's Century:

Alas, this was the final running of the Century, but take solace in the knowledge you're free to hop on your bike and ride 100 miles in New York City anytime you want.

Speaking of putting in big miles, Citi Bike riders continues to break records:

And you can consider each pedal stroke a rebuff of the mayor's recent comments:

Meanwhile, ebike moving violations summonses are up 67% this year, much to the pleasure of one State Assemblymember:

The New York Police Department issued 2,603 summonses for moving violations involving electric bikes between Jan. 1 and Aug. 25 of this year. That represents an increase of nearly 67% from 1,560 such violations issued over the same period in 2018, an NYPD spokeswoman said.

The punishments meted out to users of electric bicycles, which remain illegal in New York City, may include fines of up to $500 and confiscation of the bikes. The summonses may be issued for the violation of traffic rules, such failing to obey road signs.

Though the NYPD claims they're not focusing on ebikes:

NYPD spokeswoman Jessica McRorie said officers address traffic safety violations as they occur and that the rise in summonses doesn’t indicate a new focus on electric bicycles.

“We target dangerous driving behavior, but not necessarily and specifically e-bike driving behavior,” Sgt. McRorie said.

Yes, we really need to get those ebikes off the sidewalk, don't we?

Clearly fear of enforcement isn't going to keep drivers off the sidewalk (funny how everyone looks the other way when the roadway's blocked and drivers don't feel like waiting anymore) so our only hope is to address the traffic that's creating this behavior in the first place:

First we must recognize that the city’s transportation infrastructure is one large interconnected megasystem of routes (roads, highways, subways, commuter lines) and modes (foot, bicycle, car, train). People frequently alternate between them depending on the day, time, nature of the journey, availability of parking, how often the trains run, and so on. And yet, despite the flexibility that people theoretically have, travel is maddening. Routes are too easily gummed up because each is operated with little consideration of how the parts are bound together.

It's interesting stuff, though apparently there's a corollary to Godwin's Law that the longer the traffic editorial the greater the likelihood it will conclude that self-driving cars will save us all:

Self-driving cars will soon arrive, and the pricing scheme offered here is well-suited for this transportation revolution. Autonomous vehicles can tap directly into the route-pricing system and offer passengers different options based on the cost-speed tradeoff.

Self-driving cars will soon arrive," you say?  "Transportation revolution," you say?

Citation please.

Finally, if you haven't made over the Kosciuszko Bridge yet, Streetfilms has you covered:

Every bridge in the city should have a bike path like that.