Prospect Park West bike lane is underway

Prospect Park West bike lane is underway
Community Newspaper Group / Alex Rush

Construction is underway on the Prospect Park West bike lane — a controversial measure that the city says will calm traffic, but that has done little to calm Park Slope drivers angry at the possibility of more congestion and less parking.

The new lane markings that were painted on Tuesday show the beginnings of a two-way bike lane that will stretch from Grand Army Plaza to Bartel Pritchard Square, along with the four-foot buffer zone beside it that will result in one fewer lane for drivers.

The city says that the removal of the lane will reduce the well-documented speeding on Prospect Park West. Opponents — Borough President Markowitz among them — claim that the measure is too detrimental for drivers in a neighborhood already plagued by terrible traffic.

“It’s going to impact traffic terribly,” said Jack Nayer, a Park Slope local at a recent public hearing. “Just a few yards away is a bike lane — it’s called Prospect Park! Why not use that?”

But regardless of the gripes, the city is pushing ahead. Department of Transportation officials said implementation of the bike lane would begin in June — and judging by the fact that the new markings appeared on the first day of the month, the city wants to complete the project faster than a soccer dad racing to a AYSO game.