Bike Traffic Up 88 Percent On New Brooklyn Bridge Bike Lane

Bike ridership nearly doubled after New York City installed a new bike lane on the Brooklyn Bridge.

2 minute read

November 15, 2021, 6:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

Brooklyn Bridge Bike Lane

Nielskliim / Shutterstock

Kevin Duggan reports that since New York City installed a new bike lane on the Brooklyn Bridge, the number of bike crossings on the famous span have increased by 88%. The new lane, which opened in September, replaced a car lane on the Manhattan-bound side of the bridge and adds what DOT Commissioner Hank Gutman calls a "critical connection" to the city's bike lane network. 

The new lane reversed a years-long trend of declining bike ridership on the Brooklyn Bridge, which saw decreases in both months in 2020 compared to 2019, despite a bike boom across the city during the first year of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The increase in riders on the Brooklyn Bridge stands in contrast with reduced bike traffic on the other three bridges spanning the East River during the last two months, writes Duggan. "On the Williamsburg Bridge, daily bike traffic was down 13% in September and 16% in October compared to last year, and two-wheeled traffic on the Ed Koch-Queensboro Bridge was down 11% both months, according to DOT." Meanwhile, the Manhattan Bridge saw a 11% drop in bike traffic in October.

Last year, New York implemented a raft of policies aimed at improving active transportation infrastructure and making its roads safer for pedestrians and cyclists. The proposed $100 million Queens Ribbon Bridge would create a car-free connection between Midtown Manhattan and Long Island City, but the project remains speculative.

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