Cycling in New York: Innovative Policies at the Urban Frontier

This article presents a case study of bicycling in New York city, documenting trends in cycling levels and cycling safety over the past two decades. The authors describe the evolution of cycling policies and programs, focusing on the period since 2000, when a rapid expansion of New York’s bikeway network began. They highlight the many innovative strategies implemented in New York in recent years to promote cycling but also point out deficiencies in the city’s overall approach. The case report shows that the number of bike trips has almost doubled since 2000, due to vastly expanded cycling infrastructure, including innovative treatments such as cycle tracks, buffered bike lanes, special bike signals, bike boxes at intersections, and bright green lane markings. Cycling safety has improved, with steady or declining numbers of cyclist injuries and fatalities in spite of rapidly-rising cycling volumes. The authors identify some of the problems as inadequate or nonexistent integration of bicycling with public transport, a lack of bike parking, virtually no secure bike parking, a lack of enforcement of traffic laws intended to protect cyclists, and the need for comprehensive traffic calming to reduce travel speeds and thus encourage more cycling. This article is based on a two-year research project funded by the U.S. Department of Transportation: “Analysis of Bicycling Trends and Policies in Large American Cities: Lessons for New York.” New York is one of six case studies in the overall project, which includes five other large American cities: Chicago, Minneapolis, Washington, Portland, and San Francisco.


  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01164033
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, ATRI
  • Created Date: Jul 27 2010 7:31AM