Bill de Blasio Really Likes Bike Lanes Now

Dana Rubenstein in Capital New York writes today about Bill de Blasio’s turnaround on bicycle use in New York City.

“Bill de Blasio really likes bike lanes now,” she writes about the Mayoral hopeful who has always expressed conflicting opinions on the entire bike program in New York. That program was spearheaded by Mayor Michael Bloomberg who wants to make the city a more peaceful, greener, and more sustainable place. Suddenly de Blasio is realizing that greener translates to votes.

“Right now, the city’s goal is to increase bicycling to 3 percent of all trips by 2020,” reads the public advocate’s mayoral campaign policy book, released late last night and available here. “Bill de Blasio will double that goal—using education, promotion and safer streets to grow bicycling to 6 percent by 2020.”

“This is something of an evolution for de Blasio, who had long hesitated to take a firm position on the issue, seemingly wanting to convince the loud critics of bike lanes that he was on their side without actually committing to rolling back the Bloomberg administration’s construction of a cycling infrastructure for the city,” writes Rubenstein.

“Last summer, he called transportation commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, the woman behind New York’s rapidly expanded bike lane network, “a radical,” and termed himself an “incrementalist” on bike lanes.”

Also, “De Blasio will continue expanding bike lanes around the city so that bicyclists have a safe, dedicated space to ride—and drivers and pedestrians will have more predictable streets. He will expand the public Bike Share program to outer-borough neighborhoods and increase education outreach to promote safe riding. With these tools, de Blasio will set a goal of cutting serious cycling injuries and fatalities in half—even as the number of cyclist continues to grow.”

Read the rest of this story here.

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