Bergen Street’s make-shift bike lane barrier is no more

Cyclist’s makeshift bike lane barricade stops cops cars from blocking path
Photo by Elizabeth Graham

Bergen Street’s do-it-yourself bike lane is no more.

The row of orange traffic cylinders that stopped cars from obstructing a Prospect Heights cycling route has been removed — bringing an end to a guerilla-style “protected” path made by a crafty, rule-bending biker.

Civic activist and longtime bike booster Ian Dutton reportedly set up half a pylons alongside the often-blocked Bergen Street bike lane near the 78th Precinct last month in an attempt to discourage squad cars and other vehicles from parking in it.

Bikers cheered the move, saying that even rubber-and-plastic “infrastructure” makes them feel safer near the busy intersection — if only for the street-turf psychology of it.

But the orange cylinders disappeared last Wednesday and have not been spotted since then.

With the cones gone, a police car and a Metropolitan Transportation Authority vehicle parked atop the bike route on Saturday.

A spokeswoman for the Department of Transportation could not be reached for comment, but neighbors and police sources say construction workers — who were responsible for leaving the traffic cylinders beside the street in the first place — reclaimed them after they wrapped up work on a nearby Con Edison project.

Even so, some cyclists say the city should take a hint from the vigilante on wheels and turn what was once a flimsy orange barrier into a real one, such as a median, or a row of parked cars like the one that protects the controversial Prospect Park West bike lane.

“I think there’s a good argument for a separated bike lane on that block,” said cyclist Stephen Arthur.

Reach reporter Natalie O'Neill at [email protected] or by calling her at (718) 260-4505.

But the pylons that turned the Bergen Street bike lane into a “protected” path have vanished.
Courtesy of Stephen Arthur