Bikes and ‘Brown’ hope to co-exist along the new Washington St. lane

By Caroline N. Jackson

A bike lane has been added to Washington St. despite neighbors’ worries that bikers might have collisions with UPS trucks entering and exiting the shipping company’s building along the street.

Large trucks “swinging in and out of bays and generally operating somewhat unpredictably” concerned two Community Board 2 members who live in the area, said Ian Dutton, vice-chairperson of C.B. 2’s Traffic and Transportation Committee.

But other board members felt that if bike lanes were added, drivers would know where to expect cyclists and that riding a bike down the street thus would be safer. Also, the UPS trucks are mostly present overnight when less bikers are on the street.

The board’s resolution was supportive of the Department of Transportation’s “wide-ranging traffic-calming measures” on Washington and Greenwich Sts. that included the bike lane. The area near the UPS facilities was targeted for a bike lane based on public input, according to D.O.T.

Since the addition of a designated lane for bikers in the last two weeks, Dutton said the street was “noticeably calmer.”

“Previously, I felt I had to ride so fast so as to keep up with the traffic for my own safety,” said Dutton. “But now I was able to relax and look around.”