2021/01 – Extending Bike Access Across Arterial Bridges

Screen Shot 2015-04-09 at 4.09.33 PMMTA’s Marine Parkway Bridge.  Photo by John T. Chiarella

Question for Sen. Charles Schumer, Transit Coffee Hour, 1/25/2021

The MTA operates seven arterial bridges, none of which support cycling.1 2  3 4

The Port Authority is spending $2 billion to “Restore the George,” but won’t upgrade its 90 year old, 7 foot paths into modern bikeways.5 6

As a condition for accepting billions of dollars in federal aid, will you require the MTA and PA to abide USDOT guidance to significantly upgrade bike-ped capacity across new and reconstructed bridges?7 8


1 “Henry Hudson Bridge Re-Opens—With a Cycling Ban,” Streetsblog, 8/5/19, https://tinyurl.com/yxtp78pb

HHudson Brdg looking northHenry Hudson Bridge path after two recent restorations.  Image Emilio Guerra.

2  “The Outlaw Biker’s Illustrated Guide to the Triboro Bridge,” Ibid, 6/6/19, https://tinyurl.com/y2rmyqly

3 “Secret Report Reveals that MTA Has No Interest in Verrazzano Bridge Bike Path,” Ibid, 1/22/21, https://tinyurl.com/y6k5vgtp

4  “The Real Reason We Can’t Bike Over MTA Bridges,” Ibid, 6/6/19, https://tinyurl.com/y2rmyqly

5 “Lethco: George Washington Bridge Reconstruction Misses the Mark on Sustainability,” RPA Blog, 7/25/17, https://tinyurl.com/y36sfh8n

6 “Nine Ways “Restore the George” Gets it Wrong,” Complete George, 1/2020, https://tinyurl.com/y43djtd8

7 “Every agency has the responsibility to integrate walking and bicycling into their transportation systems—and to go beyond minimum standards.” “Policy Statement on Bicycle and Pedestrian Accommodations,” USDOT, updated 7/7/17, http://tinyurl.com/yccn8qmo

8 “Bicycle and pedestrian ways shall be established on new bridges and reconstructions for up to 20% of total project cost.”  “Accommodating Bicycle-Pedestrian Travel: A Recommended Approach,” USDOT, updated 9/25/17, http://tinyurl.com/ya8wmpxe

Screen Shot 2017-07-17 at 12.04.16 PMThe PA’s plan to “Restore the George” allocates a single 7′ path for thousands of cyclists per day.  Rendering Amman & Whitney.