Yesterday the City Council passed legislation that will require the DOT to be more transparent as it goes about adding bike lanes, pedestrian islands, speed bumps, and any other significant changes intended to calm traffic and increase safety. As you may have noticed, there's been a bit of a backlash to the city's bike lane boom, and residents in Borough Park are now up in arms over four pedestrian islands installed on Fort Hamilton Parkway. The new City Council legislation aims to help New Yorkers stay better informed about the terrifying change.

According the City Council, the bill would require that DOT establish guidelines governing the approval and placement of such devices and publish this information on its website and distribute such guidelines upon request. The guidelines must:

  • Consider whether such traffic devices would be installed adjacent to a school, in locations with a high percentage of seniors, such as adjacent to senior centers and nursing homes, and other locations as determined by DOT; and
  • List the conditions under which the installation of traffic calming devices would be appropriate.

The bill, which has the support of Mayor Bloomberg, will take effect in three months. City Councilman James Vacca (D-Bronx), who sponsored the bill, tells the Post, "We have to slow traffic down, but by the same token, there are many people in our city who see a median island and they see a bike lane and they say to themselves, 'How did that get there? How is that going to slow traffic down? Did DOT follow its own guidelines?' "