Hence, an entire new blog dedicated to the subject, the aptly titled “Cops In Bike Lanes.” It is just what it sounds like, and it already has a lot of material.
The Tumblr, anonymously run by someone whose bio simply reads, “I bike in NYC,” has started making the rounds after being picked up by Streetsblog yesterday, and is especially heavy on infractions happening in Brooklyn. There are photos of cops brazenly parked in bike lanes all over the borough, and in particular around Hoyt and Schermerhorn (“This location will become sadly familiar,” the blog’s author notes).
The blog’s author also notes New York City law, which specifically states, “It is against the law to park, stand or stop within or otherwise obstruct bike lanes.” Well, yeah! It’s not anything anyone who rides a bike or even tries to jaywalk through bike lanes doesn’t already know—a lot of drivers (and a lot of city vehicles, not just cops) ignore these lanes entirely, no matter how clearly marked or politically popular. And it’s not implausible that a cop might be using this to get to an actual emergency more quickly, or for us just to lump this in with the city’s generally rampant culture of double parking. Still, a low-key public shaming doesn’t feel out of place here. These lanes exist to keep people from dying, after all.
Follow Virginia K. Smith on Twitter @vksmith.