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Posts tagged "Gary Toth"

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Why do we need a buffer in Protected Bike Lanes? Well, here’s why….

Recently I had a quick exchange with a visiting cyclist who was pleasantly amazed at the "extra" space afforded bikes in most NYC protected bike lanes. He was referring to the painted zone between parked cars and the actual "green" bike lane - amazingly it's not the first conversation I've had like that. And you know if that's true among riders, you can image the consternation of the motorist crowd when it comes to examining why that "extra" space exists.

That's one reason I put together the above Streetfilm with Gary Toth many years ago. To explain why it's there and how both drivers & riders benefit from the placement. It's a great resource if you are working in a city or country with a government that doesn't get it. So use it.

And to show just how much it gets used, Friday I took the following series of photos during a ten block stretch riding a Citibike.  Within less than 3 minutes you'll see exiting drivers, a mom with stroller and taxi drivers just chatting outside their car in the zones, all very typical in NYC.

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Complete Streets: It’s About More Than Bike Lanes

Over the last four years, New York City has seen a transportation renaissance on its streets, striking a better balance by providing more space for walking, biking, and transit.

As with any departure from the status quo, it can take a while for everyone to grow accustomed to the changes. So Streetfilms decided to look at three of NYC’s most recent re-designs — Columbus Avenue, First and Second Avenues, and Prospect Park West — and show how pedestrians, cyclists, and drivers benefit from safer, calmer streets. We talked to transportation engineers with decades of experience, elected leaders, community board members, people on the street, and business owners to get their take on the new configurations.

The truth is, no matter how hard some media outlets try to spin it otherwise, these new street safety projects have broad community support. And while the story of these changes often gets simplified in the press, the fact is that the benefits of the redesigns go far beyond cycling. A street with a protected bike lane also has less speeding, shorter pedestrian crossings, less lane-shifting and more predictable movements for drivers, and the opportunity to add more trees and plantings. Injuries to pedestrians, cyclists, drivers, and car passengers drop wherever the new designs go in. And on the East Side, these improvements have been paired with dedicated bus-only lanes with camera enforcement, making service more convenient and attractive for thousands of bus riders.

At 11 minutes, this is one of our longest Streetfilms. We cover a lot of ground here, and we hope it’s illuminating no matter what side of the issue you fall on.

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“Floating Parking” & Bike-Buffer Zones in Separated Cycletracks

While we were out videotaping for another Streetfilm, Gary Toth the Director of Transportation Initiatives with Project for Public Spaces (his resume includes 34 years of management experience at NJDOT) took a moment to give a short explanation on what "floating parking" is, why using it is a very smart budgetary decision by the NYC DOT, and why a buffer-zone exists between exiting drivers and cyclists.

We hope this Streetfilm is a great resource that will help ally many fears this new concept (in the U.S. anyway) is experiencing in some cities.  It shows after a very brief adjustment period that drivers do grasp it.  Along the way you'll see ample, helpful footage of some of the many configurations of the NYC's new complete streets in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

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PARKing Day 2009 NYC

This year we took it down a notch. After covering PARK(ing) Day events for the past three years, we figured it was about time we got to relax a little and enjoy the space and - frankly - not get dehydrated from bicycling about all day. Oh, that and the fact we were trying out the new-ish FLIP cameras to evaluate whether or not you can pull off a good-looking video with them. I think the result speaks for itself.

So sit back and enjoy. This year over twenty countries participated. New York City featured about 50 spaces filled to the gills with people, sod, chairs, food, fun, games, and in one case - bubbles galore! You'll also get a look at "Hex Pack Patio" the POP.Park winning design from Samina Iqbal.

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Gary Toth: Reinventing Transportation Planning as Community Development

Recently, we were very lucky to have Streetsblog's Editor-in-chief, Aaron Naparstek in the "Streetfilms Headquarters" to chat with Gary Toth the Senior Director of Transportation Initiatives with the Project for Public Spaces.

For thirty-four years, Mr. Toth worked for the New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT), and become known for his collaboration and facilitation skills, and was one of the architects of the transformation of NJDOT to a stakeholder inclusive process helping the state become a national leader in Context Sensitive Solutions (CSS).

Mr. Toth has written, "A Citizen's Guide to Better Streets," which is designed to help the every person and advocacy community better understand the behind-the-scenes processes that occur when dealing with transportation departments and how to better prepare and speak their language. He shares some of his views and advice with Aaron in this very important interview.