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Astoria Assembly Member Calls for Cameras to Keep Motorists Out of Bike Lanes

Protected bike lane Skillman Ave. and 48th St. Sunnyside (Photo: QueensPost)

June 6, 2022 By Alexandra Adelina Nita

Queens Assemblymember Zohran Mamdani is calling for the installation of enforcement cameras to keep motorists out of protected bicycle lanes.

The Astoria assembly member introduced a bill last month that would see motorists who drive on protected bike lanes ticketed. The fine would be $50 for each infraction, and it would be sent to the registered owner of the vehicle.

Failure to pay the ticket by the date listed would result in an additional $25 fine.

The bill aims to deter motor vehicles from encroaching on protected bicycle lanes. The bill would see 50 cameras go up across the city as part of a pilot program.

The legislative session in Albany is now over for the year—and Mamdani aims to gain momentum for the bill and reintroduce it in 2023.

Mamdani’s bill has been prompted by an increase in traffic deaths in New York City, including a jump in cyclist fatalities.

In 2021, 273 people were killed on New York City streets, a 33 percent increase over 2018, the safest year in recent history. Crashes last year, according to city data, killed 124 pedestrians, 50 motorcyclists, 19 cyclists and 15 people on mopeds and e-bikes.

“Every day across NYC, cyclists like myself go head to head with cars in bike lanes — an incredibly scary & dangerous experience,” Mamdani tweeted.


Mamdani’s tweet included a photo of a car on top of a concrete barrier used to protect a bike lane. The tweet also includes video of a woman being spat on by a driver after she took footage of him being in a protected bike lane.

The bill is modeled after the New York City Department of Transportation’s speed camera program, which Mamdani says is effective. Mamdani cited a DOT report that said speeding dropped an average of 72 percent in areas where cameras are installed.

Mamdani’s bill has support in the state senate. Brad Hoylman, from Manhattan, is sponsoring the legislation in the upper chamber. Both bills did not get out of committee this year.

The bill would need the support of the city council, which is likely to back it.

email the author: news@queenspost.com

28 Comments

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Sunnysider

Yes cause what we need more of is tickets and car taxes right?

How about have bicyclist require a permit to ride in the bike lanes. Give them license plates and then ticket them when they don’t obey the traffic laws? I think thats the first step in safe biking.

If a car is unloading near a bike lane, how about go around them? Or.. how about real bike lanes that are separated from the street. I enjoy biking but I also realize that the modern paved streets system is for cars and give them right of way (they are 2tons bigger them me after all). Commonsense needs to be enforced here

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Woodside Mom

How in God’s name did we ever survive in the prior decades without bike lanes? How did I ever manage to cycle from one neighborhood to another without getting hit by a car? Oh that’s right, I stopped at stop signs and red lights, checked my surroundings before continuing on and all without wearing a helmet. If only today’s cyclists had that ability.

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Back then there were no douchebags.

The bicyclists knew and understood they were vehicles on the road and behaved as such.

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Helen

Why not cameras to ticket dog owners who do not clean up after their dogs and those who throw dog poop bags in city trash cans and private home trash cans or just leave them on the street. Also there were two females smoking crack on my front doorsteps and cops did not care to show up when i called. Just fly drones around nyc and ticket people. Quality of life sucks in astoria. Caban Giannaris and Zohran do not care.

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Fan of Dough Boy Park

I’m sure this will greatly impact all the people driving around with their Texas/North Carolina/Arizona paper license plates they printed out at home. Those idiots drive like lunatics because they’re never gonna get in trouble, they download a new plate every 3 days.That ridiculousness needs a serious crack down.

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Barbara

Lots of people driving around in paper NJ temp license plates also. And the cops do not care.

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Speed cameras for cars is a terrible idea

They’re just revenue generators for the state that don’t keep us safe.

Oh sorry, you said cameras for bikes? That’s totally different! Great idea.

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If you don't use them correctly it's like they're not there.

Last week I saw a small child but old enough to know better and understand RIDING the wrong way up the bike lane. His mother was there and didn’t ‘know ‘ he was wrong and being dangerous. The bike lanes won’t work if you don’t follow the rules.

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C'mon Man

i’m sure the massive traffic of 3 bikes per day are worth all this waste of money. how about laws protecting bike owners from rampant theft, like long prison sentences for those convicted, if the liberal judges even care, which i highly doubt. i already had 3 bikes stolen, all with U-Locks and chains. oh right, victims are generally persecuted and criminals are endorsed by the democrats.

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I Bet You Lose Count.

Here’s a challenge to you: Stand by the bike lane on Skillman during commuting hours in the morning. Then do the same on 43rd ave in the evening commute. Count how many bikes you see. I bet you lose count.

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About 700,000 rides a week on Citibikes alone

Wait, I thought the narrative was “there’s so many bikes blocking cars and threatening pedestrians!”

Now there’s only “3 bikes a day?”

Please choose a fabricated narrative and stick to it, I’m getting confused!

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That's Citi bikes!

Genius! That’s not counting the other separate bikes on the street/the sidewalks.

And that data, if it is accurate and not a number you yanked from the sky, probably isn’t counting the ones that are used and returned. Many of them are being used by thug people who misuse them and then don’t return them.

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Great point, the actual number is much higher

Agreed, that doesn’t include ANY personal vehicles, so the number must be MUCH higher.

Citibike publishes their data, don’t take my word for it.

> Many of them are being used by thug people

Lol what? That’s really the best you could come up with ?

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Sorry

I can only report what I witness. Grand concourse in the Bronx has more citibike kiosks than this area. They are always vandalized and empty. Ever be run over by a citibike (or any bike for that matter)on the sidewalk in a tunnel underpass??? It’s absolutely hilarious! ?

Ps. I’ll never respect or trust citi anything. They are the only bank that texts me fraudulent alerts on my account. An account I don’t have. No other bank that I am not affiliated with does that. Citi can eat me.

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Tax bicycles now

Why not just install pedestals across the city as that’s where bicyclists feel we should put them?

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Why don't cyclists pay income tax?

Great point, if you check the “cyclist” box on your 1040 you’re exempt from all taxes that pay for roads, right?

Big if true!

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Ed

This is pure dumb. We should introduce legislation to ban bicyclist of sidewalks and or when crossing a red light or better yet lets define what a bicycle actually is. Half of these so called cyclist have a 30ib engine strapped to them and just zoom past most cars and are called cyclist?? Give me a break down with all bike lanes.

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jc4749

Yes, this is an excellent idea! As a bike commuter I encounter cars in the bike lane all the time because drivers don’t respect it as a lane of moving traffic. We need to change that perception, and drivers need to be more aware of how dangerous it is for others when they occupy a lane designated for other vehicles. More cameras and a small fine are an excellent place to start.

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Y'all ride on the sidewalks, go against the light, go through traffic signals and signs

When will y’all get ticketed for your BS???

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Ever driven faster than the speed limit?

If you check the front page there’s ANOTHER story about a reckless motorist causing a tragic death.

When will cyclists get ticketed?! All the time, I guess you’re so out of the loop you never heard of the NYPD cyclist crackdown.

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Jim

He will support it until people of color get ticketed. Then he will rip into the police.

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Well, no bicycles are using the bike lanes..

Why should you get upset if your precious bikers ride on the sidewalk???

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Fran

And what happens if you have to make a stop to load or unload passengers, delivery, etc. There are lots of elderly in Astoria who rely on transportation to and from doctor offices. Many people in cars make up the working class and poor. Except for delivery workers and a few others most of those biking for leisure are those renting studios and 1 bedroom apartments in Astoria for 2000 to 3000 dollars a month. Has he visited Astoria Houses and Ravenswood Housing…most of them use cars to get around and not bikes.

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