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Mon Jun 7, 2021, 09:11 PM

'Greenway Stimulus' Could Bring Boom in Bike and Walking Trails

‘Greenway Stimulus’ Could Bring Boom in Bike and Walking Trails
Active-transportation advocates are campaigning for $10 billion in infrastructure funding to connect cities with paths and create an interstate system for cyclists and walkers.

By John Surico
June 4, 2021, 1:13 PM EDT

(Bloomberg CityLab) If you’ve ridden a bike in New York City, you’ve likely found yourself, perhaps unknowingly, on one of its designated “greenways.”

The Hudson River Greenway, the most heavily frequented bike path in the U.S., runs up and down Manhattan’s western waterfront. The nearly complete Brooklyn Waterfront Greenway is a 26-mile ride past some of the borough’s most popular destinations, like Coney Island and the Brooklyn Bridge. Parks in Queens, Staten Island and the Bronx are also traversed by greenways.

Thanks to the persistent pandemic-era bike boom, these routes are seeing a surge in use: Bike traffic on the Hudson River Greenway often appears to match the paralleling West Side Highway. Last summer, around 150,000 cyclists a month — or about 5,000 a day — passed through Kent Avenue, in Williamsburg. This year is on track to surpass that. (Now there are calls to widen it, as a recent video captured more two-wheelers than four.)

But New York City’s greenway system is more a collection of fragments than a cohesive network. There are gaps where riders must dismount or ride in mixed traffic; some stretches lack protection from speeding cars and trucks, much less any “green.” And the five boroughs aren’t fully linked. ............(more)


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