Letters: The mailbag is still full of the PPW bike lane

To the editor,

I think that the additional bike paths on the perimeter of Prospect Park were ill thought-out and dangerous (“Bike lane war! Prospect Park West a conflict zone,” June 25).

Pedestrians have to look twice both ways, once for speeding bike traffic, and again for speeding automobile traffic, in order to cross a street. Whenever we put power in the hands of the incompetent and the out-of-touch, pedestrians and regular people are guaranteed to get the short end of the stick.

I have personally seen many near misses between bikers and pedestrians, and I am certain that it is only a matter of time before the bike paths are removed because of this hazard. Collision lawsuits will force a re-evaluation of the situation. By that time, countless taxpayer dollars will have already been spent and wasted.

It is a ridiculous idea that bicyclists would even need a separate and additional bike path, with the park being less than 50 feet away. In what brain did it make sense to spend money in a tight economy on such a frivolous endeavor?

Bicyclists should be put on a leash. They ride on park paths designated for pedestrians, and run amok in Park Slope, speeding and weaving dangerously, on sidewalks, and through crowds of children and elderly residents.

Robert Segarra, Park Slope

• • •

To the editor,

I applaud the Prospect Park West bike lane. It is a well-designed addition to the network of designated paths being used by the rapidly growing number of cyclists. But more than that, I am grateful for how much the bike lane has already calmed traffic, as a resident of Park Slope and father of two young kids who cross Prospect Park West to visit the park nearly every day. I’m no longer worried about them getting run down by drivers slaloming across three lanes and drag-racing to beat the yellow lights.

To those who are furious that anyone else should be allowed to use public streets, like cyclists, pedestrians, or small children, and who angrily resent any effort to slow traffic down, I say your utopia does exist. It is called New Jersey and is a short move to the West.

Scott Powell, Park Slope

More on Vito

To the editor,

I read your story about Vito Lopez’s abuse of his office (“Vito’s ‘abuse’ of power! Lopez called city worker to get goods in political case,” online, Aug. 18) and had this thought:

This is yet another astonishing ethical lapse for Boss Vito. We must elect new Democratic State Committeepersons to abolish the corrupt Brooklyn machine once and for all. Brooklyn deserves a better brand of politics.

My campaign joined good government groups Common Cause and Citizens’ Union in decrying Lopez’s abuse of power for political gain, and we have an array of endorsements, including those from Councilmembers Letitia James, Diana Reyna and Jumaane Williams.

Lincoln Restler, Fort Greene

The writer is running for district leader.

Tunnel vision

To the editor,

The same demented thinking that brought us the Atlantic Yards project at Atlantic and Flatbush Avenues is now trying to give us a tunnel through Brownstone Brooklyn (“BQE pipe dream,” Aug. 27. This is being proposed at the same time when the racist MTA board of directors and Mayor Marie Antoinette “Let them take dollars vans” Bloomberg cannot or will not provide adequate public transportation outside of Manhattan.

If this ill-conceived project proceeds, voters will know that, as with the Atlantic Yards project, all the important politicians will have been paid off and someone’s relative will benefit from some or all of the contracts. Hey, politicians have campaigns to run and second house mortgages to pay!

The blasting for the tunnel will surely cause the collapse of Brooklyn’s 19th-century houses. They will be condemned and the land taken by eminent domain. Then, Bloomberg, in his seventh or eighth term as mayor, will give contracts to his ethically challenged developer friends. Bruce Ratner will leave his nursing home, or rise from the grave, to collect his city and state subsidies to build additional aesthetically challenged luxury housing for the billionaires who will come from all over the world just to live in Brooklyn.

Name withheld by request

Save the vista

To the editor,

Thanks for your very positive article (“New bid to save Minerva–Statue of Liberty view plane,” online, July 16).

Why is this great news? Well, City Planning was reluctant to set any precedent by acting on the historic view between Liberty and Minerva in Green-Wood. By Green-Wood working on a 197-a plan, hopefully to be fully endorsed by Community Boards Six and Seven, and local electeds, the push to save the vista will be one step closer. I personally will be voting “yes” every time! I hope our elected officials are also helping Green-Wood and, indirectly the community, by supporting the 197-a plan.

As residents and supporters of Greenwood Heights, South Park Slope, Windsor Terrace, we can help advocate for City Planning take up this 197-a and confirm the view from Battle Hill to the harbor. While we cannot remove the 11 townhouses on the corner, which impede the view, we can help Green-Wood insure further development down the view corridor does not interrupt the gaze between Minerva and Liberty.

Wave to Minerva and Liberty next time you are on 23rd Street.

Aaron Brashear,
Greenwood Heights

The writer is head of Concerned Citizens of Greenwood Heights.

Goose tears

To the editor,

Your coverage inspired me to recall better days at Prospect Park (“Vigil for the lost,” July 23).

As I entered near Park Circle, strolling into this 19th century preserve, I can only marvel at the work of Frederick Law Olmstead and Calvert Vaux, the magic of the flora and fauna existing as a parallel universe in the borough of Brooklyn.

I cross a paved road, dodging bicyclists, skateboarders, and joggers, suddenly thrust into the 21st century, then walking along the bridal path with fresh deposits of horse manure until I encounter this wondrous lake sunlight dancing on the surface while mallards and geese take flight and seagulls soar and dive for fish.

A pair of swans approach the shore gliding gracefully in unison along the still waters these snowy white creatures in sharp contrast to the small brown ducks wading near the edge of the lake. As I glance up near a fallen tree limb, an egret is perched, flapping its immense wings, a solitary figure, almost regal, along side other avian wildlife that occupy this body of water.

When stirred, the cacophony of honking and screeching echoes across the park as the sun sets along the horizon, and shadows cross the lake, and trees are silhouetted-the green, reds, and orange tones fade into grey and black, and it’s time to leave.

Alan Braverman,