See the Crazy Counts of Riders in NYC’s 2nd Ave Bike Lane (And not ONE went the wrong way in 30 minutes!)

I've been meaning to get back to doing some counts of bike and micro-mobility users on some of New York's most popular bike lanes. 2nd Avenue is certainly one of those.

So I set up the camera to record for two half hours in separate locations yesterday and present a condensed video of my results. As usual despite many cranks & drivers stating that bikes barely ever use bike lanes, selective anecdotes are not facts. Every time I've done these during rush hours the results are even better than I expected. In fact during this 30 minute taping from 5-530pm on Monday, April 3rd a very shocking thing emerged I was unprepared for: not one rider in the video rides the wrong way. Not one! I'm a New Yorker of course, and even I admit to seeing a percentage of salmoning (that's going the wrong way in a bike lane) but to witness this result was cool.

I think I have a theory: in NYC the best and most popular bike lanes don't have many wrong-way riders, or very few. Why? They are busy. They are safe. And there are safe options nearby to travel. The pairs on 1st Ave and 2nd Ave are a perfect example. Among NYC's most crowded. At rush hours it's a constant steady stream. You don't want to face dodging a dozen bikes per block. It's dangerous. I actually did a taping near this spot almost in 2021. (See here: In 21 minutes there were 171 bikes, 323 vehicles and 11 buses. And with bikes only having one lane versus the four for other vehicles (which includes a partial BUS ONLY lane) it proves that the bike lane not only is worth it - but we need to think about making them wider since they are getting real crowded in Manhattan!

You'll have to watch the video to find out, but it's a better count than 2021 and this time proportionally the results were even better for bikes. One note: the "range" for vehicle numbers is due to me having to do a manual count on paper due to the angle of the camera placement. Thus a paper count I got 545 vehicles (and 8 buses) versus later using just the straight video which I could only come up with 525, but the parked cars can shield a few here or there. So let's say I was even massively off and it was 600 - it still proves spatially bikes are a great deal for NYC.