The city is looking to install two-way protected bike lanes that would link Kent Avenue and West Street at the waterfront near the Greenpoint-Williamsburg border this summer, officials told local civic gurus on Wednesday.
The Department of Transportation will revamp a roughly quarter-mile stretch of existing cycling paths on Franklin and Quay streets into green-painted lanes protected by a concrete barrier, officials told Community Board 1’s Transportation subcommittee.
On Franklin Street, the bike lanes — which are currently located on either side of the street — will be consolidated on the western side of the street, which will serve both northbound and southbound cycling traffic.
On Quay Street, traffic engineers intend to replace the one-way bike path marked by chevrons on the east into a two-way lane also located on the western side of the road, which the city plans to separate from motor-vehicle traffic with floppy plastic flappers.
The plans require 15 parking spaces get the ax, most of which are located along Quay Street near a Metropolitan Transportation Authority storage depot.
The Authority will also have to relocate the Williamsburg-bound B32 bus stop at Franklin Street and Meserole Avenue to accommodate the bike lane, although MTA officials haven’t figured out where they want to move it yet.
One small business owner expressed concerns that the new bike lanes would interfere with pickups and deliveries at his Franklin Street clothing store, and claimed that he lost customers when the cycling paths were first installed as a result of his driveway being blocked, although he noted the city later corrected the problem.
“I literally lost about 60 percent of my business last time” said Steve Rosenberg, the owner of Pops Popular Clothing. “As soon as the bike lanes were made with access to [the driveways], my business came right back up.”
A DOT rep said the agency will not place the concrete barriers and plastic flappers in front of driveways adding that officials will meet with all businesses to discuss the changes in the coming months.
Several committee members praised the city’s move, with one cyclist saying that area is in dire need of safety improvements — adding that she also regularly patronizes Pops.
“That stretch is horrific and the sooner it can get done the better, because that spot is not safe at all,” said Ryan Kuonen. “I bike to Pops all the time… I also appreciate Pops up, down, and around town, just to let you know.”