The city recently removed a few lanes of traffic on First Avenue and added a bike lane.
White stripe separating the bike path and walking lane is being painted.
This photo was taken on the northeast corner of 9th Avenue and 17th Street. This is one of several instances of people riding around on rented bikes, aka "citibikes." (But not the guy on the red bike in the background, which is probably why he's sticking his tongue out.)It's not at all obvious from looking at the photo, but these folks are riding in a "bike lane" which protects them (by means of a relatively low concrete divider separating bikes from the crazed taxi drivers, humongous buses, and the usual assortment of trucks and cars and stampeding elephants and buffaloes out in the rest of the street).All of this is a little more important than it might otherwise seem, because 9th Avenue is a one-way street heading downtown(i.e., north to south), which means that the onslaught of vehicular traffic is coming from behind the innocent cyclists ...***************This set of photos is based on a very simple concept: walk every block of Manhattan with a camera, and see what happens. To avoid missing anything, walk both sides of the street.That's all there is to it â¦Of course, if you wanted to be more ambitious, you could also walk the streets of Brooklyn, Queens, Staten Island, and the Bronx. But that's more than I'm willing to commit to at this point, and I'll leave the remaining boroughs of New York City to other, more adventurous photographers.Oh, actually, there's one more small detail: leave the photos alone for a month -- unedited, untouched, and unviewed. By the time I actually focus on the first of these "every-block" photos, I will have taken more than 8,000 images on the nearby streets of the Upper West Side -- plus another several thousand in Rome, Coney Island, and the various spots in NYC where I traditionally take photos. So I don't expect to be emotionally attached to any of the "every-block" photos, and hope that I'll be able to make an objective selection of the ones worth looking at.As for the criteria that I've used to select the small subset of every-block photos that get uploaded to Flickr: there are three. First, I'll upload any photo that I think is "great," and where I hope the reaction of my Flickr-friends will be, "I have no idea when or where that photo was taken, but it's really a terrific picture!"A second criterion has to do with place, and the third involves time. I'm hoping that I'll take some photos that clearly say, "This is New York!" to anyone who looks at it. Obviously, certain landscape icons like the Empire State Building or the Statue of Liberty would satisfy that criterion; but I'm hoping that I'll find other, more unexpected examples. I hope that I'll be able to take some shots that will make a "local" viewer say, "Well, even if that's not recognizable to someone from another part of the country, or another part of the world, I know that that's New York!" And there might be some photos where a "non-local" viewer might say, "I had no idea that there was anyplace in New York City that was so interesting/beautiful/ugly/spectacular."As for the sense of time: I remember wandering around my neighborhood in 2005, photographing various shops, stores, restaurants, and business establishments -- and then casually looking at the photos about five years later, and being stunned by how much had changed. Little by little, store by store, day by day, things change â¦ and when you've been around as long as I have, it's even more amazing to go back and look at the photos you took thirty or forty years ago, and ask yourself, "Was it really like that back then? Seriously, did people really wear bell-bottom jeans?"So, with the expectation that I'll be looking at these every-block photos five or ten years from now (and maybe you will be, too), I'm going to be doing my best to capture scenes that convey the sense that they were taken in the year 2013 â¦ or at least sometime in the decade of the 2010's (I have no idea what we're calling this decade yet). Or maybe they'll just say to us, "This is what it was like a dozen years after 9-11". Movie posters are a trivial example of such a time-specific image; I've already taken a bunch, and I don't know if I'll ultimately decide that they're worth uploading. Women's fashion/styles are another obvious example of a time-specific phenomenon; and even though I'm definitely not a fashion expert, I suspected that I'll be able to look at some images ten years from now and mutter to myself, "Did we really wear shirts like that? Did women really wear those weird skirts that are short in the front, and long in the back? Did everyone in New York have a tattoo?" Another example: I'm fascinated by the interactions that people have with their cellphones out on the street. It seems that everyone has one, which certainly wasn't true a decade ago; and it seems that everyone walks down the street with their eyes and their entire conscious attention riveted on this little box-like gadget, utterly oblivious about anything else that might be going on (among other things, that makes it very easy for me to photograph them without their even noticing, particularly if they've also got earphones so they can listen to music or carry on a phone conversation). But I can't help wondering whether this kind of social behavior will seem bizarre a decade from now â¦ especially if our cellphones have become so miniaturized that they're incorporated into the glasses we wear, or implanted directly into our eyeballs.Oh, one last thing: I've created a customized Google Map to show the precise details of each day's photo-walk. I'll be updating it each day, and the most recent part of my every-block journey will be marked in red, to differentiate it from all of the older segments of the journey, which will be shown in blue. You can see the map, and peek at it each day to see where I've been, by clicking on this linkURL link to Ed's every-block progress through ManhattanIf you have any suggestions about places that I should definitely visit to get some good photos, or if you'd like me to photograph you in your little corner of New York City, please let me know. You can send me a Flickr-mail message, or you can email me directly at ed-at-yourdon-dot-comStay tuned as the photo-walk continues, block by block ...
A bicyclist rides in a bike lane in New York, U.S., on Tuesday, June 1, 2010. Global bicycle production is set to outpace growth in automobile production as cities and countries around the world build bike paths and attempt to cut carbon dioxide emissions from transportation. Cities like Los Angeles and New York are following the lead of Copenhagen, Amsterdam and Beijing in expanding bicycle paths and parking, helping to spur demand. The city of New York plans to quadruple its 450 miles of bicycle paths by 2030. Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Cyclists on New York City's new, physically-separated 9th Avenue Bicycle Lane are protected from left-turning cars by bicycle traffic signals. Such signals are common in Europe, but a fairly new concept in the US.The lights protect cyclists from left turning cars, who are only allowed to turn left on a green arrow. (See here: www.flickr.com/photos/kgradinger/2367382978/ )Feel free to use this photo for other purposes, but please credit to Kyle Gradinger/BCGP.
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 17: A man rides his bike along a controversial bike lane on Prospect Park West on August 17, 2011 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. In what is being viewed as a victory for the Bloomberg administration, a judge on Tuesday dismissed an effort by Brooklyn residents to remove a bicycle lane installed by the city on Prospect Park West. Mayor Michael Bloomberg, along with his transportation commissioner, Janette Sadik-Khan, has attempted to make New York more bicycle and pedestrian friendly with numerous bike and pedestrian lanes around New York City. The effort has angered some in the city who see the lanes as adding to traffic, taking up parking spaces and a danger to pedestrians. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
NEW YORK, NY - AUGUST 17: A controversial bike lane on Prospect Park West on August 17, 2011 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. In what is being viewed as a victory for the Bloomberg administration, a judge on Tuesday dismissed an effort by Brooklyn residents to remove a bicycle lane installed by the city on Prospect Park West. Mayor Michael Bloomberg, along with his transportation commissioner, Janette Sadik-Khan, has attempted to make New York more bicycle and pedestrian friendly with numerous bike and pedestrian lanes around New York City. The effort has angered some in the city who see the lanes as adding to traffic, taking up parking spaces and a danger to pedestrians. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
What a gorgeous and safe way to transport oneself around New York City and Brooklyn.Taken on a beautiful Sunday in August 2010.As seen on Steven can plan.
families take advantage of protected lanes to ride their bikes safely to the park
families take advantage of protected lanes to ride their bikes safely to the park
Safe enough for pre-teen girls to ride by themselves.
New York City's new, physically-separated 9th Avenue Bicycle Lane safely and comfortably accommodates two cyclists side by side. If drivers can have a conversation between the driver's seat and the passenger seat, why can't two cyclists enjoy the same pleasure - rather than yelling at each other in single file in a narrow, 5-foot wide bike lane?Feel free to use this photo for other purposes, but please credit to Kyle Gradinger/BCGP.
Midtown at 8th Avenue between West 31st and West 32nd Street in Manhattan / New York City, NY on Monday afternoon, 18 June 2012 by Elvert Barnes PhotographyNYC Bike Lanes Project / 8th Avenuewww.nycbikemaps.com/Bicyclist proceeding north on 8th Avenue Bike Lane passes in front of the James A. Farley Post Office Building421 8th AvenueNYC NYVisit Elvert Barnes 18 June 2012 ART TAKES TIMES SQUARE docu-project at elvertbarnes.com/June2012ATTS
Bicycle Clown Brigade rides to Eyebeam, March 15th, 2008
Bicycle Clown Brigade rides to Eyebeam, March 15th, 2008
Sorry it's not in focus.This bike lane goes north from the Manhattan Bridge collectors (Sands and Flushing) to the Williamsburg Bridge, Williamsburg neighborhood, and Greenpoint.Contact me if you want to use a photo without watermarking.
Note: this photo was published in an Oct 5, 2011 blog titled "NYC Will Complete Manhattan Greenway." It was also published in an Apr 12, 2012 blog titled "On the Road to Inequality ." And it was published in a Jul 23, 2012 blog titled "Looking North."Moving in 2013, the photo was published in an Apr 12, 2013 blog titled "NYPD Ticketing Cyclists for Late-Night Hudson River Greenway Commutes." And it was published in an Apr 14, 2013 West Side Rag blog titled "ON RIVERSIDE PARK BIKE PATH, NEW LIGHTS AND LATE-NIGHT TICKETS."*************************************I love to stroll along Riverside Park, on the western edge of Manhattan by the Hudson River, during almost any season of the year (and you can see the photographic results in this Flickr collection). However, I've never been south of 70th Street nor north of 125th Street on these strolls -- even though I know the park extends all the way up to the George Washington Bridge, a couple miles further north.Actually, it had not been possible to walk the entire distance between 70th and 125th, at least not right along the river, because there was a section between 82nd and 96th Street that had once been a very narrow, rough, rutted footpath between the river and the ever-busy West Side Highway ... until the New York Parks Department decided to close it off and build a properly paved, somewhat wider, pathway for bicyclists, skaters, joggers, and people just out strolling along, like me. Of course, it took the Parks Department a couple years longer than originally planned, and after a while, nobody paid any attention to the signs indicating that they were definitely going to be finished this spring ... no, this summer ... no, well, maybe this fall.But then, all of a sudden, they did finish ... and word circulated around the Upper West Side that it would be officially opened, thus connecting "Riverside Park South" with "Riverside Park North," sometime just before Memorial Day weekend. So we decided to check it out, starting with a nice lunch at an outdoor cafe at the base of the pier that extends out into the Hudson River at 70th Street.After lunch, I was planning to walk north and check out the new pathway ... but first, there was an old abandoned freight elevator at the edge of the water, which I decided I should photograph. It was just to the south of the 70th-Street cafe, and after taking the photos, I looked a little further south, and saw that there was a broad pathway, carefully mowed grass, and lots of people strolling ... where? further south! So I followed the path, and found that it expanded into a complex web of sidewalks, mini-gardens, mini-piers jutting out into the river, wooden-slat chairs, picnic benches, and boardwalks leading through wild grass and flowers that had been carefully planted. All of this continued, block after block after block, down below the elevated West Side Highway, all the way down to 59th Street. And it turns out that that is where "Riverside Park South" actually starts.So that's where most of the photos in this set were actually taken. There are some strange sights along the way, because the whole area used to be occupied by working piers that loaded and unloaded ships filled with freight and cargo, on and off railroads that snaked their way along the west side of Manhattan. But as ship-borne cargo was gradually replaced by truck, rail, and air cargo, the piers and docks gradually fell into disuse; and when the Penn Central Railroad went bankrupt, they really fell into disuse.It turns out that there was a massive fire along this area back in June of 1971 (a time when I lived in the Park Slope section of Brooklyn, and was more-or-less oblivious to what was going on in Manhattan), and the fire was so hot that it melted and warped the steel girders of many of the docks, cranes, and loading structures. When the whole area was renovated recently (apparently part of a required "civic contribution" by Donald Trump when he acquired the rights to build condos and apartment buildings along the stretch of the far West Side of Manhattan, from 72nd Street to the mid-60s), the city planners initially intended to remove all of the old twisted metal and rotting wooden piers. But local civic groups prevailed upon the city to leave some of it intact, as a reminder of what was there before... I could go on with more details, but you can check it out for yourself here on Wikipedia.Anyway, I eventually strolled back to my starting point at 70th Street, and then up to 82nd Street, and finally along the newly-opened pathway connecting the southern stretch of park with the northern section that starts at 96th Street. Alas, it turned out to be utterly boring: absolutely straight, with a northbound bike lane, a southbound bike lane, a thick garish yellow line dividing the two, and a narrow 3-foot path by the railing for pedestrians to creep along. No benches, no tables, no mini-piers jutting out into the river; no curves, no artistic flair, no flowers, no grass, no nothing. You can see for yourself in the final two or three photos in this set ...But all in all, it was a pleasant afternoon. One of these days, I'll go back down to Riverside Park South around sunset, and see if I can get some good pictures of the sun disappearing into the smoggy haze of New Jersey, across the water...
At the intersection of Gold and Sands Streets.Riding on the raised median buffered bike lane on Sands Street from Navy Street (westbound towards Manhattan Bridge).Where would you install one of these in your city?
The Sands Street bike lane connects parts of Brooklyn to other protected bike lanes leading elsewhere (north or further east) and the Manhattan and Brooklyn Bridges.Contact me if you want to use a photo without watermarking.