Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer, who is running for borough president, rallied with transit advocates this morning for a separate walkway on the south side of the Queensborough Bridge.
The northern outer pathway of the bridge is currently used by both pedestrians and cyclists, with just a narrow painted division down the middle. The full pathway is 11 feet wide and the bike side is two directional. The bridge saw 6,556 bike trips in one summer day in 2017, Transportation Alternatives says.
TA had been petitioning Van Bramer to support opening up the southern outer pathway on the bridge for pedestrian use to separate cyclists from foot traffic. The council member is now pushing the Department of Transportation.
Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer clashed with Streetsblog NYC over the weekend. Last Friday, Streetsblog published a story titled, “Jimmy Van Bramer Called for a Protected Bike Lane on 43rd Avenue a Year Ago Today. Now He’s Undecided.” The post came a year after Corona resident Gelacio Reyes was killed on his bike by a drunk driver. The tragedy galvanized support for enhancements such as protected bike lanes in the 43rd and Skillman avenues area in Sunnyside. JVB indeed supported that. But at a March 26 town hall, he said, “Nothing is a done deal, this is a proposal,” Streetsblog reported. “I listened to every single word that every single person said here today.”
Streetsblog tweeted with its article, “Hard to think of a more brazen about-face on a major street safety project in NYC than @JimmyVanBramer abandoning the 43rd Ave protected bike lane.”
In his statement, the councilman said he still believes in the measures but added his respects for the approval process.
“We are going through the process which, though Streetsblog may not like it, includes the DOT presenting to the local community board… While some may be frustrated with the process, I believe Community Boards play a role and should be included in such plans.”
“Statement from @JimmyVanBramer contradicts nothing in today’s story. A year after saying DOT should install protected bike lanes where Gelacio Reyes was killed, he does not support DOT’s plan for protected lanes on 43rd and Skillman.”
JVB had a much better day with the press last week when he was given credit for the city’s decision to remove parked garbage trucks from the streets by the Ravenswood Houses.
Joelle, 17 (orange vest), one of the organizers of today’s Women’s Ride in Queens: “As a woman being a cyclist, there’s a lot of gender discrimination” in the form of mansplaining or street harassment, she says. “So we wanted to say women should feel strong & impowered to ride.” pic.twitter.com/3Ym5A6Gw0K
City Council Speaker Corey Johnson and Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer will be at LaGuardia Community College tomorrow for the opening reception of “The Lavender Line: Coming Out in Queens,” an exhibit on the last 25 years of LGBT activism in Queens.