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Boerum Hill panel approves legalizing ‘Amity Street Wiggle’ for cyclists

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Cyclists in Cobble Hill could soon have a little more wiggle room.

Community Board 2’s transportation committee approved a city plan to legalize riding across Court Street from Amity Street to Dean Street — a popular but unlawful move known by some as the “Amity Street wiggle” — with a 7–5 vote at a meeting on Thursday night.

Some members even admitted that they too have been wiggling for years, and have lived to tell the tale.

“I’ve done the jog for 45 years and I’ve never experienced any problems,” said Boerum Hill resident Bill Harris. “I’m perfectly safe in doing it even though it’s not permitted.”

Amity and Dean streets run off Court Street on opposite sides, but are offset by about 45 feet, and making a Downtown-bound left turn into the Carroll Gardens-bound street to bridge the gap is technically illegal — not that it stops many riders, clearly.

In fact, it is so common, some locals formed a group called Friends of the Amity St. Wiggle, which has been advocating legalization for years.

Now the Department of Transportation wants to sanction the move too, adding “no left turns except bicycles” signs and painting markings across Court Street.

But not everyone at the meeting was sold — some argued that many drivers also like to wiggle their way across the shortcut, and they too should be given a green light for the sake of simplicity and equality.

“It might be helpful for cyclists and cars and pedestrians if there’s one way to do this,” said Sidney Meyer. “One way for the cyclists and another for the cars is going to cause confusion.”

But the majority of committee members ultimately decided that making the same maneuver with a 3,000-pound hunk of steel is too dangerous, and actually recommended the city install a pedestrian island on the crosswalk over Amity Street to act as a physical barrier to wiggly motorists.

The transportation department already presented the plan to Community Board 6 last month (Court Street is the border between the two districts), which largely supported the idea but decided to hold off on voting until more locals can weigh in.

The proposal will now move on to the full community board, which is scheduled to meet on Feb. 8.

Reach reporter Lauren Gill at lgill@cnglocal.com or by calling (718) 260–2511. Follow her on Twitter @laurenk_gill
Updated 4:22 pm, January 23, 2017
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Reasonable discourse

Alex from Brooklyn says:
T-minus....until the trolls show up...
Jan. 20, 2017, 3:06 pm
Rufus Leaking from BH says:
The deli owner on the corner is going to make a fortune on flowers and candles.
Jan. 20, 2017, 11:17 pm
Marissa from The O.C. says:
But can they wiggle their ears?
Jan. 21, 2017, 8:25 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Alex, just because there are those who disagree with this idea, it doesn't make anyone a troll, but I guess there are those who just can't take criticism even though they are known for dishing it.
Jan. 22, 2017, 4:05 pm
Lisa from Park Slope says:
This is just typical, isn't it?!
Jan. 23, 2017, 9:16 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Dave, what is your issue with this? If you can have your say, why can't I have mine? I just feel that cyclists should follow the same traffic laws as anyone else who drives a vehicle with no exceptions to that. Honestly, I find this wiggling for cyclists placing themselves into harm's way. Addressing this isn't trolling, it's knowing what's really going on here. On a side note, I consider anyone who makes personal attacks to be more of a troll, which is what so many of them such as yourself tend to do.
Jan. 23, 2017, 3:24 pm
Dave from Brooklyn says:
As you stated, that is what you "feel" rather than what you "know". So even you admit your opinion is based on whatever BS comes through your head. It probably has something to do with the fact that you live 1.5 hours away in Westchester rather than local to this intersection but that is just my two cents.
Jan. 23, 2017, 9:18 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Dave, whatever you say about me, I can easily say about you. However, the truth is that many do feel that cyclists have the tendency to disobey a lot of traffic lights and signs, and the claims for that are real, so no fake news on that. If that got a usual political activist such as Alan Dershowitz, who usually talks about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, to talk about such a group and their behavior, then it does show how serious it is getting. Personally, I don't see a reason to why cyclists should have special treatment to the rules while all others who drive must be subject to each and everyone of them hence the Animal Farms reference. Unless you can give me a good reason, I will always see your group as just believing that you always try to act as if you are holier than thou especially in trying to believe that your needs always outweigh everyone else's. On a side note, attacking someone because of where they live is a major hit below the belt. Then again, when was the last time the bike zealots ever did believe in fairness. Last time I checked, I didn't make such remarks as you did Dave nor did I even demand anyone I didn't like to be to censored, which makes you more of the troll. I just see stating my side as hearing the Israeli side of the conflict, which doesn't get heard a lot, while your side is the Palestinian side that gets heard all the time that makes it my two cents.
Jan. 24, 2017, 4:09 pm
Samir Kabir from downtown says:
Hey, let's do whatever we want whenever we want! The Trump effect.
Jan. 25, 2017, 7:10 am
Dave from Brooklyn says:
Tal,

Seek mental help.
Jan. 26, 2017, 2:57 pm

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