STAPLETON — Plans to bring bike lanes to Stapleton streets and make roads narrower in an effort to curb speeding will put cyclists in danger, some residents are telling the city.
The Department of Transportation plans to add bike lanes to sections of Van Duzer Street, Targee Street and St. Paul's Avenue and make other traffic changes to help reduce rampant speeding and improve pedestrian safety, city planner David Northmore told the Van Duzer Street Civic Association Tuesday night.
Northmore said that wide traffic lanes on the blocks — with some the size of highway lanes — lead to speeding by cars.
The plan would narrow the roads, add dedicated or shared bike lanes and increase the size of parking lanes, adding another 40 parking spaces in the area.
But some residents fear that the narrower streets, bus routes and double parking during school dismissal could endanger cyclists if bike lanes are installed.
Joan Harmon, who's has lived on St. Paul's Avenue for 55 years, said the block is filled with cars double parked during school dismissal and the plan would "kill bicyclists" with vehicles driving into the lane.
"Both sides of the streets are filled with cars, a city bus can barely get through," said Joan Harmon.
"I just don't think there's room."
On Targee Street, between Vanderbilt Avenue to Van Duzer Street, the DOT proposed cutting one lane down from 11-feet to 10-feet and completely removing a second to widen the parking lane and add a 5-foot dedicated bike lane with a 3-foot buffer.
Aside from the lanes, the DOT proposed adding more intersections to blocks, including St. Paul's and Van Duzer Street where one side of the sidewalk ends with no crossing option.
Some residents at the meeting felt that the measures wouldn't do enough and they would rather see stop signs or speed bumps.
Northmore said the city couldn't add stop signs because there's not enough traffic or speed bumps because the streets are truck routes.
While some residents were against the bike lanes altogether, others said any plan is better than leaving the streets as they are.
"There are plenty of bikes coming up and down the street," Community Board 1 member Marjorie Ryan said during the meeting.
"[It] would be an improvement to what’s going on."