NEW YORK CITY DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION BEGINS CONSTRUCTION OF WIDER PROTECTED BIKE LANE ALONG TENTH AVENUE IN HELL’S KITCHEN
New bicycle lane will be among Manhattan’s widest: at width of 10 feet, new lane will create more welcoming, comfortable riding experience – including for micromobility users
Community–supported redesign enhances safety for all road users, with concrete pedestrian islands, new bicycle parking, and dedicated, signalized turn lanes
New York – New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez announced construction will start this week on the first phase to redesign Tenth Avenue, which will bring wider parking-protected bicycle lanes and a host of safety improvements between West 38 Street and West 52 Street through Hell’s Kitchen. The project includes the installation of concrete pedestrian islands, new bicycle corrals, and redesigned intersections to calm turns and make the street safer for drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists alike. Most of the project will feature a 10-foot-wide northbound bicycle lane to more comfortably accommodate the burgeoning number of micromobility users and promote social cycling.
“We are reimagining Tenth Avenue for a safer, more sustainable future. This project will deliver much-needed safety upgrades to the Hell’s Kitchen corridor and help support more efficient transportation options,” said NYC DOT Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez. “More people are cycling than ever before and by designing wider bike lanes we can keep encouraging this growth while providing more comfortable riding experiences. We thank Council Member Bottcher, other local elected officials, and community representatives for their strong support – and look forward to future upgrades to other parts of this vibrant neighborhood.”
RESPONDING TO THE COMMUNITY
Protected bike lanes improve safety for all road users by shortening crossings distances for pedestrians at intersections, calming vehicle traffic, and enhancing visibility among those walking, driving, and riding a bike or e-mobility device. These designs have reduced deaths and serious injuries among all road users by 18.1 percent, with a 29.2 percent decline for pedestrians.
After first presenting the project to Manhattan Community Board 4 last year, NYC DOT refined its proposal to expand bike lane widths to 10 feet for most of the project while maintaining a three-foot buffered space between parked cars. NYC DOT continues to develop wider lane designs for projects across the city and, as with wider lanes that have been installed or planned along Third and Ninth Avenues in Manhattan, the agency will closely monitor the use of the 10th Avenue bike lane.
These efforts build upon the Adams administration’s Charge Safe, Ride Safe E-mobility Action Plan announced earlier this year by incorporating streets designs to accommodate the growth of micromobility devices on city streets.
The finalized plan will also increase the number of concrete pedestrian islands from two as originally presented to eight, based on community requests, between West 40 and West 51 streets.
At West 41 and West 42 streets near the Lincoln Tunnel, where NYC DOT has recorded especially high vehicle-turn volumes, the agency will install left turn lanes with dedicated signal-timing to reduce conflicts between pedestrians and cyclists and turning vehicles. The new timing will allow for pedestrians to get a head start crossing the street. These treatments, known as Leading Pedestrian Intervals (LPIs), have shown to reduce pedestrian deaths and serious injuries by 34.3 percent. Motorists’ turn movements across the bike lane and crosswalk will take place in a dedicated phase with a green turn arrow, during which pedestrians and bicyclists are held with a “Do Not Walk” and red bicycle signal, respectively.
NYC DOT will also install protected intersections, known as “offset crossings,” at West 39, West 43, West 45, West 47, and West 49 streets. These intersections feature painted pedestrian space designed to improve visibility between cyclists and drivers, and naturally slow driver turns. NYC DOT will install ten bicycle corrals at selected locations to improve access to bike parking and further protect the space.
NYC DOT plans to implement the section phase of this project, from West 14 Street to West 38 Street, with a similar design in 2024.
“Protected bike lanes save lives. We’re glad to see construction start on the new 10th Avenue street safety upgrade. Street safety projects such as wider bike lanes and pedestrian protections are proven to increase bike ridership and are vital to keeping New Yorkers safe,” said Elizabeth Adams, Deputy Executive Director for Public Affairs at Transportation Alternatives. “We look forward to working with Commissioner Rodriguez and breaking ground on projects like this in every borough.”
“We applaud DOT for responding to the community and advocates by building wider protected bike lanes, pedestrian islands, bike corrals, and redesigned intersections along this heavily-used stretch of 10th Avenue, said Ken Podziba, President and CEO of Bike New York. “For the safety of all road users and under the outstanding leadership of Commissioner Rodriguez, we expect to see the City continue to invest in essential improvements, like this redesign of 10th Avenue, throughout the five boroughs.”
“These wider bike lanes are the future — they will reduce the friction between traditional and electric devices and ensure all road users have the space they need to feel safe and comfortable,” said Jackson Chabot, Director of Advocacy and Organizing at Open Plans. “Prioritizing wider bike lanes in new projects across the city is an excellent way to proactively address our shifting mobility needs. As the city changes and grows, our streets should change along with us.”
“We’re excited to see construction commence on the redesign of 10th Avenue, which will soon be significantly safer thanks to the introduction of new pedestrian refuges, offset crossings, and a capacious 10-foot-wide protected bike lane that will serve the demand for increased space for bikes and other micro-mobility devices,” said Eric McClure, Executive Director at StreetsPAC. “The changes to 10th Avenue will make navigating Manhattan’s West Side much easier and less stressful, and once the second phase of the project is completed next year, 10th Avenue will provide a protected, straight-shot route for biking from the West Village to the Upper West Side. We congratulate Council Member Erik Bottcher for making his campaign pledge of a 10th Avenue redesign a reality, and thank Commissioner Rodriguez and the staff at NYCDOT for bringing this important project to fruition.”
“By widening protected bike lanes and implementing innovative safety features at intersections, the 10th Avenue Redesign Project will at once encourage the use of micromobility options – which is exactly what we need to reduce climate-damaging emissions from our transportation sector – and make for a safer journey for everyone, including pedestrians,” said Alia Soomro, Deputy Director for NYC Policy at the New York League of Conservation Voters. “The New York League of Conservation Voters is thrilled to see construction for this project kicking off and we applaud Mayor Adams and Commissioner Rodriguez for their commitment to creating a safer and greener New York City.”
“The west side has grown tremendously in the last decade and Manhattan Community Board 4 is thrilled a protected bike lane will be installed on Tenth Avenue,” said Jeffrey LeFrancois, chair of Manhattan Community Board 4. “This dangerous vehicle artery carries many trucks and private vehicles and is in drastic need of updating. MCB4 applauds NYC DOT and Council Member Eric Bottcher for making this a priority. DOT’s design will improve safety for all users and includes wider lanes, concrete islands, and protected crossing signals. This will complete our network of protected bike lanes that we started in 2009 and bring much needed pedestrian safety at all the intersections.”
Banner Image: Bike lane. Image Credit – Aaron Doucett