Jersey City bike group pushes for Grand Street redesign

Posted by DanL on 2016/12/14 22:37:12
Jersey City bike group pushes for Grand Street redesign
Asks City Council for protected bike lanes, “road diet” for pedestrian & overall safety

JERSEY CITY, Dec. 13 – Grand Street, a vital but dangerous arterial road, should be the first in the city to be redesigned as a truly Complete Street, the advocacy group Bike JC said today, asking the city government to support their plan.

The nonprofit group’s proposal, dubbed Grand Street Vision, would implement a “road diet” on the busy street, reducing its four existing lanes to three. This is an increasingly common redesign method proven to greatly improve safety for all road users—especially pedestrians—by calming motor traffic, reducing excessive top speeds and curbing reckless driving. A road diet was recently implemented nearby on Hoboken’s Observer Highway.

In the space saved, the Grand Street plan would install physically separated, protected bike lanes—also increasingly common in New York and large cities, but also already in use in Hoboken, Newark, and other small and midsize cities, with construction underway in Secaucus. The plan also calls for pedestrian-specific improvements such as “bumpouts,” which give more time and space to those crossing streets.

Bike JC members and supporters are planning to attend the Municipal Council meeting Dec. 14 in numbers, to demonstrate their approval, while several speakers are slated to address the project during the regular public comment portion of the meeting. Bike JC trustees testified Monday at the council’s caucus session; in response, the council agreed in principle to create a committee dedicated to such advanced road redesign projects.

The Grand Street Vision plan would greatly improve connections for cyclists between the many diverse and distinct neighborhoods along Grand Street, from Bergen-Lafayette to Exchange Place, as well as the waterfront bike/walk pathway, and Liberty State Park, long a haven for both recreational and racing cyclists. Exact designs and details of the plan have not been determined; Bike JC is trying to build community and government support for the project as a concept.

Bike JC has been gathering grassroots support for Grand Street Vision proposal since June of 2015, and has collected over a thousand signatures on petitions supporting it, mostly from people living on and around Grand Street.

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CONTACT: Tony Borelli, tony@bikejc.org

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