Poll Finds Modest Rise in Support for Bike Lanes

From the NYT City Room blog (7/28/2011):

[A Quinnipiac] poll found that 59 percent of city voters think the Bloomberg administration’s expansion of bike lanes in the city is a good thing, up from 54 percent in March. The poll question was worded as follows: “As you may know, there has been an expansion of bicycle lanes in New York City. Which comes closer to your point of view: (A) this is a good thing because it’s greener and healthier for people to ride their bicycle, or (B), this is a bad thing because it leaves less room for cars which increases traffic.”

Shortly after the poll was released Thursday morning, the city announced figures showing that there had been a 14 percent increase in commuting by bicycle this spring as compared with spring 2010. The city’s generates its cycling figures by counting bike riders on four spring workdays at select locations: the Brooklyn, Manhattan, Williamsburg and Queensboro Bridges; the Hudson River Greenway at 50th Street; and the Staten Island Ferry. The city reports an increase of 62 percent since 2008.

In March, the New York Times reported that “City Hall has turned to its savviest political strategist, Deputy Mayor Howard Wolfson, to lead a stepped-up public-relations blitz aimed at strengthening support for the lanes and minimizing political fallout for Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg.” Michael M. Grynbaum, Promoting Bicycle Lanes as if They Were on the Ballot, N.Y. Times, Mar. 29, 2011, at A18.

And from Crain’s New York Business (7/29/2011):

House Republicans’ proposed 30% cut in the main federal transportation funding bill includes the elimination of money for bicycle-related projects. Because about 80% of the city’s bike-lane funding comes from Washington, the new bill would drastically curtail bike-lane construction here. Pro-biking group Transportation Alternatives is trying to rally opposition to the measure.

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