department of transportation

Policy, Transportation

The Brooklyn Bridge bike lane is finally open

By Devin Gannon, Wed, September 15, 2021

Photo by the New York City Department of Transportation on Flickr

A long-awaited two-way protected bike lane officially opened on the Brooklyn Bridge Tuesday. Advocated for years by cyclists, the new path replaces the innermost car lane of the Manhattan-bound side of the iconic bridge and leaves the existing elevated promenade for pedestrians only. Both foot and bike traffic on the bridge, nicknamed the “Times Square in the Sky,” skyrocketed in recent years, leading to dangerous, crowded conditions.

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City Living, Events

Summer Streets 2019; Photo courtesy of New York City Department of Transportation on Flickr

New York City’s original “Open Streets” return this August. The Department of Transportation announced “Summer Streets,” the annual initiative that transforms seven miles of Manhattan streets into a car-free oasis, will take place on August 7 and August 14. While the city’s popular Open Streets program was established last year in response to the coronavirus pandemic, Summer Streets is now in its 13th year.

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Policy, Transportation

Photo credit: Marc A. Hermann / MTA New York City Transit on Flickr

Nearly three miles of dedicated bus lanes equipped with transit signal priority technology and enforcement cameras opened in the South Bronx last week, part of the city’s plan to speed up the system’s notoriously slow travel times. The new lanes run along East 149th Street between Southern Boulevard and River Avenue and are used by four heavily-used bus routes, the Bx2, Bx4, Bx17, and the Bx19. The bus improvement project is the fourth to be completed since Mayor Bill de Blasio announced his Better Buses Restart plan in June amid the city’s coronavirus pandemic recovery.

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maps, Restaurants

Mayor de Blasio and First Lady Chirlane McCray celebrate the launch of Phase 2 reopening by eating dinner at Melba’s in Harlem; Photo by Michael Appleton/Mayoral Photography Office on Flickr

Restaurants and bars officially reopened for outdoor dining this week as part of New York City’s phase two of reopening. Since Monday, more than 5,650 restaurants have applied, self-certified, and opened their sidewalk, patios, and adjacent parking spots to diners. To make it easier to find which establishments are open for al fresco dining in your neighborhood, the Department of Transportation on Friday released a dashboard and an interactive map that let New Yorkers search for open restaurants by borough and ZIP code.

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Transportation

Rendering via NYCEDC

The city is once again inching forward with its plan to bring a streetcar to run between Brooklyn and Queens, a problem-plagued $2.7 billion proposal first presented five years ago. The New York City Economic Development Corporation on Thursday launched a new website for the Brooklyn Queens Connector (BQX) with information about public community meetings planned for February and March. According to the website, the city expects a draft environmental impact statement (DEIS) on the project to conclude in the spring of 2021, with the final statement ready by that fall. But questions about the logistics of constructing the streetcar’s 11-mile route and its growing price tag.

It’s back

City Living, Policy

Photo courtesy of the Department of Transportation

Nearly two million packages on average are delivered in New York City each day, causing vans and trucks to clog already congested streets. Looking to address delivery-related traffic, as well as cut vehicle emissions, the city announced on Wednesday a pilot program that would encourage companies to use cargo bikes instead of trucks to deliver parcels in Manhattan below 60th Street.

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holidays, Transportation

Photo by Javier Guiterrez Acedo on Flickr

The city will expand pedestrian space around Rockefeller Center and Radio City Music Hall during the holiday season, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Friday. Starting Nov. 29, 49th and 50th Streets, as well as Fifth and Sixth Avenues, will be partially closed to cars to alleviate congestion caused by the roughly 800,000 people who visit the Christmas Tree every day during the season. The expansion marks the first time the city has created a defined pedestrian space for the area.

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holidays, Midtown, Policy

Photo by Shinya Suzuki / Flickr

For years, residents and community leaders have called on the city to add pedestrian space near Rockefeller Center to make conditions safer for the hundreds of thousands of people who visit the area during the holiday season to see the tree and store windows. This week, the Department of Transportation privately issued a pilot plan to address the major crowds by increasing pedestrian space on Fifth Avenue between East 48th and East 51st Streets. But Mayor Bill de Blasio quashed the plan before it was officially released, claiming “it was not signed off on by City Hall.”

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Events, Midtown, Transportation

Image via Flickr

The United Nations General Assembly already began on Sept. 17 but Midtown has yet to experience the traffic nightmare that will hit the neighborhood next week. With meetings taking place through Sept. 30, the city has designated weekdays between Sept. 23 and Sept. 30 as gridlock alert days. On top of UNGA, Climate Week events will add to the congestion. “Drivers should leave their cars at home next week if they can—and try walking, taking mass transit, or getting on a bicycle,” Polly Trottenberg, commissioner of the Department of Transportation, said in a statement. Here’s a handy guide to getting around the city during the busy week ahead, including street closures and traffic updates for those of you with nerves of steel.

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City Living, Events, Manhattan

This Saturday is your final chance to enjoy Summer Streets

By Nicole Mondrus, Fri, August 16, 2019

summer streets, nyc, biking

Photo courtesy of the DOT via Flickr

Now in its 12th year, Summer Streets returns this Saturday for its third and final hurrah, where New Yorkers can experience over seven miles of car-free streets. Park Avenue will be closed from Chambers Street all the way to 72nd, and the path will be open to cyclists and pedestrians alike. Five “rest stops” will be set up along the route, each with different activities, performances, and free snacks.

Car-free fun this way

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