Stringer Proposes 75 Miles of Protected Bike Lanes Round 50 Excessive Faculties – Streetsblog New York Metropolis
He’s hoping to pedal his strategy to energy.
Comptroller Scott Stringer entered the school-transportation fray on Thursday with what he known as the town’s first-ever “bike-to-school” plan, a proposal for establishing dozens of miles of protected bike lanes round excessive faculties.
Stringer’s plan calls for a quick rollout of bodily bike infrastructure and free rides for low-income college students dwelling inside and out of doors the town’s bike-share community. The comptroller is asking the town to put in 1.5 miles of protected bike lanes round 50 excessive faculties within the subsequent 12 months, which at 75 miles can be greater than thrice the bike-lane lane miles put in citywide in 2019. The lanes must also hook up with the town’s community of protected bike lanes, in response to Stringer, who desires each highschool within the metropolis to have such lanes in 5 years.
The bike-to-school plan is the comptroller’s (and 2021 mayoral candidate) newest pro-cycling and pro-pedestrian providing, following his proposal to remake business districts throughout the town with sidewalk expansions, public plazas and tons of of miles of motorbike lanes and bus lanes. The proposal builds on the recognition that biking has gained throughout the pandemic as method of avoiding transit; DOT information reveals that biking over the town’s predominant East River bridges was up 22 percent this August in comparison with August 2019. In regular instances, most high-school college students take the subway or metropolis buses to highschool, utilizing free Metro Playing cards issued to them by the town.
The proposal, if enacted, may also increase the exercise of the town’s more and more sedentary college students. As Stringer’s press launch notes, the variety of high-school college students who bike or stroll to highschool fell from 23 % in 2009 to 18 % in 2015, even if 40 % of high-school college students go to a faculty of their residence district and 83 % go to colleges of their residence boroughs.
“Constructing out bike lanes round New York Metropolis excessive faculties and offering bikes to lower-income college students would open the door to biking for tons of of 1000’s of younger folks,” Stringer stated. “By taking this motion, we are able to permit New York Metropolis’s youth to get round their metropolis, enhance well being and academic outcomes, and join with their communities.”
For low-income college students who don’t have bikes, Stringer calls at no cost Citi Bike memberships for college kids who dwell within the bike-share service’s space and are lined by Citi Bike’s reduced-price $5 month-to-month membership, and a charitable effort that might get bike producers to donate bikes to low-income college students.
The concept of proving free bike share and even cost-free personal bikes has a basis right here. In April, the Financial Improvement Company and the Division of Transportation partnered with Citi Bike and a neighborhood bike-rental firm in donating bikes to frontline workers at Elmhurst Hospital. And the Higher Bike Share Partnership has worked with the Bed-Stuy Restoration Corporation to assist public-housing residents and SNAP recipients purchase Citi Bike memberships, an effort that one supporter of Stringer’s concept highlighted within the comptroller’s press launch.
“After witnessing the advantages of the Higher Bike Share Partnership led by the group group Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Company on the grounds of inclusion, well being, financial mobility and entry to a different mode of transportation, I’m excited to see this chance being prolonged to New York Metropolis college students,” Technique for Black Lives Political Director Jerrell Grey stated in a press release.
Along with the bike lanes and free biking choices, Stringer can also be proposing:
- Pedestrianizing blocks in entrance of 100 faculties
- Utilizing underused house in faculties for indoor and outside bike parking
- Bike-maintenance courses so college students can study to deal with their bikes and even prepare for careers in bike restore
- An annual survey of pupil commuting patterns
- An growth of the Bike New York Bike Security Schooling Program, which now serves simply 21 faculties
Mayor de Blasio’s school-reopening plan requested dad and mom to have their kids stroll or bike to highschool as a part of a pandemic-related effort to cut back crowding on faculty buses when faculties reopen this month, the plan didn’t lay out any methods for making that journey secure for college kids. He additionally inspired dad and mom to drive their kids to highschool — regardless of the dangers that 1000’s extra vehicles on the highway poses to youngsters. Reckless drivers killed 10 school-aged kids within the metropolis in 2019, and in February of this 12 months seven-year-old Payson Lott was killed by a driver near his school on Pennsylvania Avenue as he walked together with his mom.
Earlier than the coronavirus pandemic, the mayor batted down the idea of closing streets in entrance of colleges, citing what he stated had been the pleas of fogeys who had no different alternative however to drive their youngsters to highschool. His angle has modified considerably although as his administration embraced outdoor learning, together with pedestrianizing some streets in entrance of colleges, as a strategy to reopen faculties safely throughout coronavirus.
A spokesperson for de Blasio stated that below the mayor’s watch, 20 % of the bike lanes inbuilt America have been inbuilt New York Metropolis.
“We’re grateful for the Comptroller’s advocacy and proud to have given college students and households car-free methods to get to highschool and transfer across the metropolis,” the spokesperson stated.