When I try and explain this two sided stance the city has about cycling, people often look at me like I’m some conspiracy nut who’s just told them Saddam Hussein had nothing to do with 911. I mean how could a city with so much effort in making new bike lanes, setting weekend days aside with street closures and encouraging people to ride also have this negative harassment campaign to the very same bike riders they want to help, “Green” the city?
Its simple…the two departments don’t communicate and have different agendas.
The D.O.T. has made a lot of efforts to make more room for cyclists, the problem is no one has told the chief of police, Ray Kelly who continues to set up annoying sting operations and use the rank and file officers to ticket cyclists.
First it was the Queensborough Bridge, which was reported on extensively on Streetsblog. by Brad Aaron.
Now it appears to be happening on the Williamsburg Bridge.
7 days ago I heard reports of police in vans ticketing every cyclist who did not dismount when coming down the bridge on the Manhattan side. For anyone unfamiliar with the logistics, you are gaining a lot of speed on this descent and dismounting would prove to be rather difficult until you get to the bottom. Many experienced riders don’t want to waste the energy and try and just merge right into traffic. Its just a bad design in general.
Today I got reports that one police van was parked half way up the ramp in the middle of the path. This sets up a very dangerous situation, not only for the riders coming down but for those going up, towards Brooklyn.
If the police were truly concerned about people’s safety, they wouldn’t park a giant van in the middle of a steep decent.
If you have more information on what the police are up to…please let this blogger know. Video, pictures and more details would be greatly appreciated.