The city’s Department of Transportation (DOT) has agreed to create a “busway”—or what DOT is now calling a “Transit-Truck Priority” project—on 14th Street between 3rd and 9th Avenues beginning in June for an 18 month pilot.
This means buses and delivery vehicles will be given priority over private and for-hire vehicles during most of the day, with the exact hours still to be determined by transportation officials. Private cars that turn onto 14th Street from the avenues will be forced to take the next legal turn off 14th Street, or suffer a traffic camera ticket mailed to the vehicle’s registered address.
Along with the creation of Select Bus Service on the M14 routes in June, this should result in significant speed and reliability increases over current routes on 14th Street—and help handle the spillover of transit riders during the L train’s tunnel rehabilitation during the next 15 months. Also, bike lanes on West 12th and 13th Streets will be made permanent.
I support this new plan for 14th Street and surrounding streets, even though it will require some getting used to by drivers and nearby residents. Many details have yet to be worked out. Traffic spillover onto 13th and 15th Streets must be carefully monitored, and I am working to preserve the M14’s local stops on the Lower East Side, which are most-used by seniors and low-income riders.