Inside the Park Slope Bike Lane Battle

Reporter Matthew Shaer talks with folks on both sides of the highly contentious lawsuit seeking to remove a bike lane from Brookyln's Park Slope neighborhood.
March 21, 2011, 2pm PDT | Tim Halbur
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The lawsuit was filed on behalf of a group calling itself "Neighbors for Better Bike Lanes", which includes many powerful Park Slope neighbors, says Shaer. They argue that the city is exaggerating the benefits of the bike lane, and say they have hours of video footage that proves it.

Shaer shows that the lines are not as clearly drawn as one might think in this battle:

"In the prevailing spin, the bike-lane fight has two sides: the blue-collar New Yorkers who have to drive to work and the coddled creative-class types who live close enough to commute on their Bianchis. But the class dynamics are actually far more complicated, and the allegiances often defy expectations. The bike-lane opponent, for instance, is just as likely to be a well-to-do Manhattanite, and his main gripe the deliveryman who just pedaled the wrong way down a freshly laid bike lane, in a rush to unload a wood-oven pizza (which, on another day, that Manhattanite himself might have ordered). Simple nimbyism can't entirely account for the feud in Park Slope..."

Much of the article is dedicated to DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan's bike lane expansion policies.

Full Story:
Published on Sunday, March 20, 2011 in New York Magazine
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