DOT Plans East-West Bike Connections in Crown Heights

DOT wants to install dedicated bike lanes on St. Johns Place and Sterling Place in Crown Heights. Image: DOT
DOT wants to install painted bike lanes on St. Johns Place and Sterling Place in Crown Heights [PDF]. Image: DOT

DOT presented plans for east-west bike lanes in Prospect Heights and Crown Heights to the Brooklyn CB 8 transportation committee earlier this week [PDF].

The proposal calls for painted lanes on St. Johns Place from Plaza Street East to Rogers Avenue and from New York Avenue to Ralph Avenue, with sharrows on the narrow one-way strip in between. St. Johns fluctuates between two-way and one-way traffic flow, and will have eastbound-only bike markings between Washington Avenue and Kingston Avenue. Signage will route westbound cyclists to Sterling Place one block north, where DOT plans to paint a lane from Kingston to Vanderbilt Avenue.

There are currently no markings to differentiate space on Sterling Place. Image: DOT

Speeding is a problem on these side streets, with 47 percent of drivers on the corridor traveling over the speed limit, according to DOT. Within the project limits, 47 people were severely injured in the five years from 2010 through 2014. On Sterling, which is 34 feet wide, there is currently no striping to differentiate lanes.

DOT also wants to prevent conflicts between turning drivers and pedestrians at the intersection of St. Johns and Utica Avenue, where seven pedestrians were severely injured between 2010 and 2014. Left turns from northbound Utica would be banned, while left turn lanes would be installed in both directions on St. Johns.

According to DNAinfo, committee chair Fred Monderson tabled the proposal for next month after one member of the public said “this is like the next colonialism.” DOT’s Alicia Posner defended the project, saying that bike lanes are standard safety treatments.

Seven people were severely injured at the intersection of Utica Avenue and St. Johns Place, where DOT wants to ban left turns from northbound Utica. Image: DOT

To connect the St. Johns bike lane with the bike lane on East New York Avenue, DOT is also planning a short segment east of the CB 8 project area. DOT presented that bike lane segment to the CB 16 transportation committee meeting on January 11 [PDF]. That project also includes left turn bans from Eastern Parkway onto St. Johns.