I’ve written before about my bicycle rides along the Hudson River in both New Jersey and New York.
I first moved to Hoboken in the mid 80s and at that time I had a car. I’d drive my car along River Road to go shopping and many times on my way to New England, I’d go by way of River Road to avoid the traffic to the George Washington Bridge. Many others have this same idea, and due to the overdevelopment, the traffic has been growing larger. Over the years, as they built more and more condominiums, and the Light Rail was extended, the road was widened. Considering all the effort given to making room for the Light Rail and widening the road, I’ll never understand why they didn’t think of the thousands of cyclists and paint in a simple bike lane.
With all the people now living and shopping in that area, a bike lane would be a wonderful and much needed addition, and would have helped with the traffic and congestion.
In the December 10th issue of “The Midweek” Reporter, Tricia Tirella wrote about the problems with getting a bike lane built on River Road in NJ.
“The problem is that right now River Road is not wide enough for a bike lane plan”, said Hudson County Spokesperson, James Kennelly. He explained that a long-term capital project is planned for the next three to five years that will include a dedicated lane. He said that the road will be widened and resurfaced when it is funded by the New Jersey Department of Transportation.
I ride my bicycle during the Spring, Summer and Fall seasons and just to get from Jersey City to River Road is a challenge since there are no bike lanes in Jersey City either. They have “share the road” and “bike route” signs posted around but no lanes. They have put some bike lanes on a few streets in Hoboken so that does help. The worst of all, is riding in Weehawken where it meets River Road, to get to the walkway on the other side. This intersection has never been altered and is dangerous to bicycle riders. We sneak along a short dirt path where the cars are merging from two roads and for about 50-100 ft they are too close to us. Something has to be done with this intersection to make it safer for riders. There is no other way to get from this area of Weehawken to the waterfront walkway along the Hudson.
Why does it take so long for something that we need so badly, to get built? Maybe something will change before Spring 2010 comes and I’m ready to ride out there.
After publishing this post, I read about the first meeting of an advocacy group which took place in December in Jersey City to discuss safer streets/better biking. You can be sure I will be attending the next meeting in January and have written to one of the group members, Daniel Levin for more information and whether I can help build them a website, which they don’t seem to have. It’s time the city realized how many cyclists there are. Read the full article here.