Letters to the editor

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The Bike Debate

Douglas Feiden opens his article with an interesting, but unsupported statement: “Bicycles ... are swiftly multiplying on the streets of Manhattan” (“The Age of the Bike Controversy,” May 11-17). How “swiftly?” And are they in fact multiplying at all? Even if we assume some level of increase, it is certainly not to the degree that the bike lobby has claimed for years that it would be.

When the first stretch of bike lane on Columbus Avenue was installed, and there was precious little increase in bicycle usage, the bike lobby claimed that it was because the bike lane was not complete. When the bike lane was completed, and the expected huge increase did not occur, the excuse was that it was finished during the fall/winter season. When the warm season came — and the expected increase still did not come — the bike lobby was suspiciously silent. Any increase that it has seen is not nearly what the bike lobby claimed would occur.

I am not against bikes: I ride mine every day. But doing so has only proved to me that whatever “multiplying” has occurred has been anything but “swift,” and is actually comparably negligible.

Ian Alterman

Upper West Side

Beginning in 2007 I have been an advocate, writing published letters all to do with the bike situation. Since that time I have been a believer in licensing bikes and very vocal about it. When it hits you in the pocket perhaps there will be some of these selfish, arrogant bikers who will change their mindset; plus think of the extra funds for the city.

I am not young and had many near hits, but the most frightening was walking out of my building one day and a man wearing a suit and a helmet rode directly in front of me — what a heart-stopper. He should have known better.

Our former DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan and former Mayor Bloomberg were in love with bikes and bike lanes. How often did they attempt to step in a bike lane or cross a street to find that bikers feel they own the road, going through red lights, against traffic and on the sidewalk?

I notice that the Citi Bike riders are quick learners. They, too, are doing the same. Is there no one to help pedestrians of all ages?

Bunny Abraham

Upper West Side

Town Hall Crowd

How can the direction of an important article (“UWS Residents Decry Proposed Supertall Building,” May 11-17) be subverted in the first three words [“Around 80 people ... “] of the article?

This happened to be a very important neighborhood meeting with regard to the proposed skyscraper [at 200 Amsterdam Avenue]. The location was moved to accommodate the increased interest/attendance for the town hall meeting. Put another way, 80 does not do any kind of justice to the actual number of attendees, and seems to minimize neighborhood and civic interest. The larger venue held far more than the 80, and chairs were being added for most of the several presentations to accommodate arriving individuals.

Manfred Fuchs

Upper West Side

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