Officials Backpedal on Kent Avenue

Councilmember Yassky and others have sent a letter to DOT asking for changes to the Kent Avenue bike lanes. The basic thrust is not too different from what I have said in the past – bike lanes are important and therefore its important that DOT implement them well. They haven’t done that on Kent Avenue, and it is hurting Kent Avenue business owners.

Yassky et al are proposing that DOT eliminate (paint over) the northbound bike lane until “DOT and the community have developed a collaborative plan”. That is a bad idea, in that once the bike lane is gone, it will be difficult to get it back. If DOT is going to do any repainting, it should repaint the street right – shift all the lanes to the west side of Kent, or install parking on the east side while retaining a northbound bike lane, or do something else that fixes the problem. (Parking is not the problem – economic viability of businesses is. That’s one problem – fix it.)

Also, it should be noted that even though the letter is signed by Evan Thies of CB1, it does not represent official CB1 position. The Board already voted (twice) to support the Greenway, and (once) to ask that DOT come up with a solution that makes both bike traffic and vehicular traffic work on Kent Avenue.