Street Beat: Greater Nyack Bike/Walk Presentations, Nov 13 & 16

by Dave Zornow

Double utility polls, multiple signs, mailboxes and muni meters are among the issues that make walking on our sidewalks a challenge.

Seven nationally recognized firms with experience in creating transportation plans that make it easier to get around without a car will present their approach to the Greater Nyack Bike/Walk Master Plan on Mon Nov 13 and Thurs Nov 16 at Nyack Village Hall.

The goal of this plan is to improve safety and create better bicycling & walking connections:

  • between neighborhoods and local destinations (downtown, Nyack Beach State Park, Palisades Center, public transportation, etc) for walking and cycling.
  • to best manage the increased foot and cycling traffic that will occur after the new Mario M Cuomo Tappan Zee Bridge Shared Use Path opens for joggers, walkers, cyclists and tourists in 2018.
  • for students and parents to get to and from Nyack Schools.

River Road, Open Again

The residential street that goes under the Tappan Zee Bridge landing is now open again to traffic. It had been closed since October 10 to permit Tappan Zee Constructors (TZC) to dismantle the original 1955 TZB landing in South Nyack/Grandview. The road reopened on Sat Nov 4.

TZC will continue dismantling operations above the Hudson River, removing large sections of concrete and steel with mobile cranes, including the project’s largest crane I Lift NY. The super crane is scheduled to be relocated near the Westchester landing and assist with removing a section of the old bridge’s steel next week. It will remove 20 similar sections through next spring, the largest weighing more than 1,300 tons.

Demolition materials will be placed onto barges and transported to ancillary facilities including the Port of Coeymans in Albany County.

Each presentation will take 50 minutes with ten minutes saved for followup questions. Here’s the schedule for each day:

MONDAY, 11/13/17
3:30 – 4:20 PM: BFJ Planning
4:30 – 5:20 PM: Nelson Nygaard
5:30 – 6:20 PM – Break
6:30 – 7:20 PM: Alta Planning

THURSDAY, 11/16/17
4:30 – 5:20 PM: Barton & Loguidice
5:30 – 6:20 PM: NV5
6:30 – 7:20 PM: Sam Schwartz Engineering
7:30 – 8:20 PM: Fitzgerald & Halliday

What’s A GNBWMP?

The Village of Nyack, on behalf of its partners in Upper Nyack, South Nyack and the Nyack School District, has received a $120,000 grant from The New NY Bridge Community Benefits Program to create a Greater Nyack Bike/Walk Master Plan. Since this group was formed in early October, about 70 people have joined the mailing list. Anyone who lives in the villages or the hamlets of Valley Cottage and Upper Grandview is invited to join. Participation by people who work, bicycle, walk or visit the Nyacks is encouraged, too.

Based on an online survey conducted last month, here’s some info about who’s signed up to participate and what their concerns as related to this effort.

  • 9 of 10 members say they walk for exercise at least once a week. Sixty percent say they get in a serious walk daily.
  • Almost everyone (90%) owns or has access to a bicycle.
    • A third consider themselves “road warriors” and describe their bike riding style as “strong and fearless.”
    • One in three say they are “enthused and confident.” They are comfortable sharing the road with traffic, but would prefer separated facilities like protected bike lanes or trails.
    • 25% are “interested but concerned.” They would like to ride more, but are concerned about sharing the road with traffic or navigating busy streets.
    • Three percent are “no way no how.” They never rode or no longer ride.
  • Respondents were also asked to suggest issues that the selected consultant should study. These included:
    • Making North Broadway safer for school age kids, residents and recreational cyclists
    • Developing signage and education programs to inform cyclists to ride single file as well as educate drivers on cycling issues like dooring, the NYS law which allows cyclists to “take the lane,” and the New York’s “safe passage law” requiring 3-4 feet of space before passing cyclists on the road.
    • better and wider sidewalks that allow two people with pets or strollers to pass without having to step into the street.
    • preparing for the opening of the new Shared Use Path on the Mario M Cuomo Tappan Zee Bridge, including providing adequate car parking and bicycle racks as well as supporting bicycle commuting to the Tarrytown Metro North station.
    • Creating a local network of paths and trails to local destinations including Nyack Beach State Park, the Palisades Center Mall and Nyack College.
    • Exploring adding bike lanes and better sidewalks in Valley Cottage

If you would like to join the mailing list for this project, email recreation@nyack-ny.gov with the subject line GNBWMP Committee.

Dave Zornow is the chairperson of the Village of Nyack TAP (Transportation Alternatives Program) Committee.

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