Work is mostly complete a new protected bike lanes in East New York, the Department of Transportation announced Thursday.
The project includes just over 3 miles of protected lanes on Corzine and Wortman avenues, and provides safe east to west cycling connections between the existing Fountain Avenue bike lane and green spaces like Breukelen Playground and Shirley Chisholm State Park, according to the DOT.
The department said the upgrades were developed with school children in mind, as the new lanes will benefit seven nearby schools.
“This great project makes these streets safer for all East New York residents—including the school children who will be walking these corridors every day to and from their classes,” said DOT commish Ydanis Rodriguez, in a statement.
Protected bike lanes benefit travelers by shortening crossing times for pedestrians and help reduce vehicle speeds by narrowing streets. In 2022, DOT reported protected lane designs have reduced deaths and serious injuries for all road users by 18.1%. Overall, the various bike lanes reduced bicycling risk by 32%.
As part of their effort to protect school-aged children in the nabe, DOT conducted two years of public outreach, according to a department representative, and talked with schools and NYCHA resident associations to discuss needed safety improvements.
Those conversations led to the installation of additional speed bumps, turn-calming treatments, school slow zones, and new stop signs and traffic lights at various intersections across the neighborhood.
The department also installed standard bike lanes on Stanley Avenue to expand the neighborhood’s lane network, and added two-way protected lanes along Louisiana Avenue which runs in front of the Breukelen Playground.
The project is a part of the department’s equity commitment to bring safety improvements to underserved communities. East New York is considered a “Tier 1 Priority Investment Area,” according to the DOT. The tricky intersection of Dumont and New Lots avenues has also been redesigned with a painted pedestrian space to improve visibility, and is dramatically widening the sidewalk outside P.S. 325 in East New York to make the area safer for students.
Kathy Park Price, Brooklyn organizer for Transportation Alternatives, a street safety advocacy group, the project is key to achieving the NYC Streets Plan and Vision Zero, transportation plans to improve street safety and accessibility.
“Every New Yorker needs safe places to walk and bike and we applaud DOT for investing in East New York by building three miles of protected bike lanes,” Price said in a statement. “This project makes important steps in building East New York’s bike network and brings life-saving benefits to everyone using the street — especially students getting to school.”