2022/11 – Grayways Reso – DRAFT

Resolution in support of a proposal calling on NYC DOT and DOPR to designate 500 miles of recreational bikeways connecting city parks to implement Intro 0291-2022 (AKA “Grayways”)

Grayways: proposes that NYC Departments of Transportation (“DOT”) and Parks & Recreation (“DOPR”) designate a 500 mile network of recreational bikeways connecting city parks as a means to rapidly implement NYC Council Intro 0291-2022 calling for a city wide greenway plan.

WHEREAS the New York City Council voted to approve Intro 0291-2022 calling for a citywide greenway plan, and

WHEREAS the NYC Council has called for $3.1 billion in new capital funding to implement the proposal, and

WHEREAS the time frame for NYC Department of Transportation (“DOT”) to submit first draft of its greenway plan has been pushed back to December, 2024 and the period to implement it is undetermined, and

WHEREAS the proposed Grayways network comprises 18 routes spanning the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island, and

WHEREAS the network aggregates NYC’s 1500 miles of bikeways and on-road bike lanes plus quiet residential streets and commercial areas empty on weekends (“industrial parks”), and

WHEREAS the network routes past city parks and playgrounds at regular intervals to provide users with “places to go,” and

WHEREAS first iteration of the network can be implemented simply by posting GPS (“global positioning system”) data on DOT’s website immediately benefiting the city’s 880,000 active adult cyclists, and

WHEREAS improvements to make the network acceptable potential users can be implemented faster, and at far less cost, than networks comprising high-stress roads,

WHEREAS mitigations that do not require the taking of parking spaces, or the closing of streets, are less likely to encounter community resistance, and 

WHEREAS studies by the National Association of Realtors show that proximity to bikeways enhances home values 5-10%, and

WHEREAS the Grayways proposal advances the agenda of the NYS Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act [Extend Access to Green Space; Benefit Underserved Constituencies; Create Jobs and Develop Local Economies; Have a Positive Impact on Climate Change; Invest in Resilient Infrastructure], and 

WHEREAS the network furthers key DOPR initiatives: Parks Without Borders; Walk to a Park and Community Parks, and

WHEREAS the network will reduce user conflict on the Central-Prospect Park Drives, Coney Island-FDR Boardwalks and Hudson Greenway by providing alternate recreational capacity, and 

WHEREAS a network with a recreational component is apt to significantly higher levels of use than one designed solely for commuting, and

WHEREAS the network will broadens the constituency for further investment in both bike infrastructure and city parks, and

WHEREAS the network will bridge “transit deserts” and reduce spending on personal transportation as a percentage of household budget, and

WHEREAS the network will leverage billions of dollars invested by City in bike paths and parks to drive local tourism (“staycations”), and

WHEREAS the network will drive patronage of neighborhood food shops and BID-sponsored events (“Bronx Night Market”), and 

WHEREAS the network will draw recreational cyclists from Long Island, Westchester and New Jersey, and

WHEREAS NYC bike shops rely on the recreational cycling supported by this network to generate the bulk of their profits, and 

WHEREAS the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act mandates that municipalities take measures to permanently reduce greenhouse emissions, and 

WHEREAS the transportation sector generates 36% of NY’s greenhouse emissions, and 

WHEREAS, a contiguous bike network will reduce vehicle miles traveled, facilitate multi-modal trips, and provide the rationale for bike share providers to extend service to the outer boroughs, and  

WHEREAS commute times by bicycle are often comparable to driving or mass transit, and the advent of Ebikes has the potential to further reduce travel times by 50%. 

WHEREAS increased bicycle mode share with increase throughput on existing transportation infrastructure, thereby extending their useful lifespan, and

WHEREAS, a contiguous cycle network enhances resilience to widespread transport outage resulting from extreme weather events, structural failure, global pandemic or armed conflict.

WHEREAS, a contiguous cycle network will create the imperative for bridge operators to enhance bike access across the City’s arterial crossings, and 

WHEREAS, there are many relevant precedents and examples of bicycle master plans comparable to the Grayways proposal that address urban, surburban and regional needs, and

WHEREAS, the Grayways proposal has the support of seventeen cycling organizations, and

WHEREAS the Grayways proposal substantially fulfills the requirements of Intro 0291-2022,

NOW THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED THAT _____________, endorses the Grayways proposal as a means to implement NYC Council Intro 0291-2022 calling for a city wide greenway plan, and 

THEREFORE BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT a copy of this Resolution will be sent to Mayor Eric L. Adams, NYC DOT Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez, NYC DOPR Commissioner Sue Donoghue, Borough President ________, and Councilmembers _______, _________, _________.

Dated: _________