A Protected Bikeway for 10th Avenue Gains Momentum at Manhattan CB 4

Spurred by the Hudson Yards/Hell’s Kitchen Alliance BID, Manhattan Community Board 4 is pressing for a protected bike lane and pedestrian islands on 10th Avenue.

On Monday the board’s transportation committee voted unanimously to recommend a northbound protected bikeway on the west side of 10th Avenue from 14th Street to 55th Street — nearly the entire length of the district.

The idea originated with the BID, which hired Sam Schwartz Engineering to produce the street redesign concept [PDF] as part of a streetscape study for the area between 34th Street and 42nd Street, transportation committee co-chair Christine Berthet told Streetsblog.

With development around Hudson Yards slated to bring thousands of people and jobs to the far West Side of Manhattan, there’s even more reason to redesign the neighborhood’s highway-like avenues for safe walking and biking. With pedestrian islands, the typical crossing distance would shrink from 69 feet to 51 feet, an improvement of more than 25 percent.

The committee recommended that DOT implement the redesign between 14th and 55th Streets, prioritizing the blocks between 34th and 42nd. Board members also want to see the city incorporate protected intersections. “It is an illustration of what is feasible with current DOT guidelines,” said Berthet.

In addition to the immediate safety benefits for people walking and biking on the West Side, getting a protected bike lane on 10th Avenue would have a big impact on the Manhattan bike network. It would generate momentum to link up with the Amsterdam Avenue protected bike lane, which currently doesn’t extend below 72nd Street, forming a north-south pair with Ninth Avenue/Columbus Avenue and relieving some of the crowding on the Hudson River Greenway.