Sunday, August 17, 2008

Summer Streets Part Deux

Our second incursion into Manhattan was a big success. Our expedition team had fantastic weather to explore Summer Streets and we also took part of the afternoon to look at many other projects that are reshaping the city.

On Park Avenue north of Grand Central Station. From left - Claudia, John, Paul, Susan, Alex, Hans, Russell, Andy and Bruce

Some minor tweaking to a near perfect event would be to coax the numerous businesses to set up their wares in front of their stores, like an oceanfront boardwalk. The stores didn't look busy to me but the lemonade stands were doing a brisk business.

When you arrive at the Brooklyn Bridge there is no obvious route to the East River Esplanade. It took a little map reading to get there, but the end result was worth it.

The last time I visited the riverfront paths in Manhattan was two years ago on an equally spectacular Saturday and there has definitely been a huge uptick in bike traffic. It appears that the Summer Streets events, Waterfalls exhibit and the Governor's Island Ferry are bringing in huge crowds to the bikeway system.

Gansevoort Plaza in the Meatpacking District is an example of reclaiming street space on the cheap. Simply put up some stones and planters to keep the cars out.

The 9th Avenue cycletrack is no longer a lonely demonstration project. Workers are putting the finishing touches on Broadway Boulevard. The cycletrack is open and workers will be adding planters and street furniture to the newly created open space.

This video shows the genius of the project, it's left turn/bike signal phasing. Please pardon my over the top narration.

The bike on bus and train choices between New York and Philadelphia are plentiful we used every one of them. Our riders took SEPTA/NJ Transit Rail, Bolt Bus and Chinatown Buses to get there and back. No one reported any problems taking their bikes on board.