NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — If you ask drivers, many will tell you it’s become chaos in New York City because of miles and miles of bike lanes popping up in recent years.
The Department of Transportation installed more than 60 miles of dedicated cycling space last year, the most of any year to date.
“It’s impossible to drive,” one driver tells CBS2’s Emily Smith. “It makes it very difficult.”
“I don’t know how they every are going to rectify it,” another driver said.
Statistics show over the last five years, the average speed in Manhattan below 60th Street has decreased from over nine miles an hour to about eight miles an hour.
DOT Commissioner Polly Trottenberg addressed the issued at a recent press conference.
“I will give you stats,” Trottenberg said. “Cycling has increased dramatically in New York City. And look, there’s always in a very congested city going to be a lively debate how we allocate our street space.”
CBS2’s requests to ask the commissioner additional questions — both in person and over the phone — were declined.
The DOT’s website states that studies show a double digit increase in volume of 59 percent after implementation of the lanes, but that was information from 2014 before many more miles of cycling lanes were added.
Trottenberg also said recent data shows traffic isn’t getting worse in NYC.
“When we look at our traffic studies we see at best we keep traffic neutral, sometimes better,” she said at Tuesday’s press conference.
When pressed for specific studies showing more drivers aren’t on the roads, the DOT referred CBS2 to their website.
Drivers say they’re not convinced.
“It’s the worst ever,” Danny Quinn tells CBS2. “The city these days, it’s the worst driving around.”
A lot of street real estate has been given up on the promise that bike lanes would be heavily used. At some point, New Yorkers would like to see the evidence that it was — and remains — a good bet.