Its a bike lane made in heaven.
A local panel unanimously approved a city plan on March 16 to build a safe haven for bicyclists along dangerous Flatbush Avenue, giving the go-ahead to new protected lanes around Floyd Bennett Field and Marine Park Golf Course months after pooh-poohing a similar plan they said put bicyclists in harm’s way.
Community Board 18 sent a light-on-details proposal to build a path connecting Marine Park to Jamaica Bay Greenway via Flatbush Avenue back to the drawing board in January — warning members would not approve the plan without assurances cyclists on Flatbush would be separated from traffic.
The Department of Transportation answered last Wednesday, agreeing to reconstruct the sidewalk on the parkside of Flatbush Avenue for separated pedestrian and bike paths — and got a round of applause from board members who said the new plans are exactly what they were looking for.
“They worked diligently, they came back to us with exactly what we wanted,” said district manager Dorothy Turano. “Bicycle paths on Flatbush Avenue would be a disaster.”
The path will establish a new link from Marine Park to the Jamaica Bay Greenway on Flatbush Avenue, and on a separate track, the project will also enhance the existing concrete path along Flatbush Avenue, from Hendrickson Place to the Belt Parkway. Bicyclists should expect the city to break ground on the project this summer, said a Department of Transportation spokeswoman.
And the department will work closely with the board to ensure that any and all changes to the design will be reviewed and approved, the spokeswoman said.
The board also voted to approve phase one of the city’s plans for the greenway’s protected bike lanes, which are scheduled for implementation this year and should be finished by summer, said a spokeswoman.
These plans include bike lanes on E. 38th Street, Avenue V, Hendrickson Street, and Hendrickson Place. On Hendrickson Street — where there is currently no existing sidewalk — parallel parking will remain, and the department will create 3-foot buffer separating a pathway for pedestrians and bikers from drivers. On Hendrickson Place, metered parking will be removed to accommodate two-way traffic and the bicycle path. And parkside of Flatbush Avenue and Hendrickson Place, eight to 10 additional parking spaces will be created.