Why is half of the Prospect Park West bike still covered in ice and snow?

I’ve been calling 311 and nagging various people in city government to find out why the Sanitation Department, three full days after Thursday night’s snowfall, has not yet plowed and salted the Prospect Park West bike path (Deputy Mayor Stephen Goldsmith says he’s a big fan of social media if you want to get in touch). City government apparently believes that the Sanitation Department did, in fact, plow and clear the PPW bike path on Saturday. Yet, Sunday morning I was still hearing complaints that the bike path was covered in snow and ice. So, I went up to PPW after the Jets game on Sunday at about 10:45 pm to check it out for myself. As CBS2′s Marcia Kramer can tell you, nothing beats good old fashioned shoe leather reporting. Here is what I discovered:

The Prospect Park West bike path is exactly half-plowed.

From Bartel Pritchard Square to 7th Street, the bike path is clear and free of snow and ice. Then at 7th Street there is a big mound of snow in the middle of the bike lane where the plowing stopped. From 7th Street to Grand Army Plaza the bike path is covered in ice and snow, one to four inches thick. It is icy, treacherous and not at all safe or functional for biking. Still, there were quite a few bicycle tire tracks in the icy, snowy bike path near Grand Army Plaza. There are also lots of footprints at the pedestrian crossings and where drivers are trying to access their parked cars. Whomever decided that it’s a good idea not to plow and clear the Prospect Park West bike path is putting cyclists, pedestrians and motorists at risk. Meanwhile, the sidewalk along Prospect Park and the two lanes of PPW’s roadway have been plowed and clear since Friday morning.

Below are photos taken with my Blackberry, Sunday night at about 10:45 pm. This first photo is taken standing at 7th Street looking south toward Bartel Pritchard Square. The bike lane is cleared just like this from here all the way down to 15th Street. Not bad, right?…

Now, I have turned around. I’m standing at 7th Street looking north toward Grand Army Plaza. There’s a mound of snow in front of me where the snow plow has, for some reason, stopped functioning…

Here’s more of a close-up shot of the end of plowing at 7th, again, looking north toward Grand Army Plaza….

One more shot, this time looking south toward Bartel. Why would they do just half a job?…

Next, I headed down to 2nd Street, the spot where I often connect to PPW when I’m biking. In this photo you can see the tire tracks of some sort of motor vehicle. Perhaps, someone drove over the bike path with a plow but somehow forgot to lower the blade down as they approached NBBL Headquarters at 9 Prospect Park West. This is 2nd Street looking south toward Bartel…

Turning around, here is 2nd Street looking north toward Grand Army Plaza. Note how clear and nicely plowed the sidewalk is alongside Prospect Park (the Prospect Park Alliance is responsible for that). While I was taking these photos I noticed two guys biking on the road and another guy biking on the sidewalk. There are definitely people out here trying to use their bikes…

Now, here I am near the front of 9 Prospect Park West at about Carroll Street looking north toward Grand Army Plaza. (Hi, Neighbors for Banning Bike Lanes! Can you see me on your video camera?) You can see from all of the skinny tracks on the path, it looks like people have actually been trying to bike here this weekend, as I was on Friday when CBS2′s Marcia Kramer busted me for riding on the sidewalk

In this last shot I’m looking south, I think, at about Garfield Street. Note that when the bike path is not plowed, that also sucks for pedestrians, who have to walk across this ice to get to Prospect Park. (Send your slip-and-fall law suit directly to Marty Markowitz, Brooklyn Borough Hall, 209 Joralemon Street, 11201)…

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One Comment

  1. Ed Ravin
    Posted January 25, 2011 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    call the local community board, and also see if you can find the phone numbers of the sanitation district that covers the area – clearly someone is not doing their job.