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The Bicycle Coalition's Bob Previdi (left) testifies for a new buffered bike lane in Northeast Philly.

The Bicycle Coalition’s Bob Previdi (left) testifies for a new buffered bike lane in Northeast Philly.

A bill for a new buffered bike lane along Tyson Avenue in Northeast Philadelphia, from Roosevelt Boulevard to Frankford Avenue, was recently introduced by Councilman Bobby Henon, and earlier today, the Bicycle Coalition of Greater Philadelphia’s Policy Coordinator Bob Previdi testified in favor of the new bike lane.

Henon has begun proving himself to a strong supporter of bike lanes, having getting Philadelphia’s first physically-protected bike lane approved last year. Installation is scheduled to occur this summer.

Tyson’s buffered bike lane will not be protected, but will be wider than a standard bike lane. And that this is being approved is somewhat of a development, considering no buffered bike lane that removed a lane of traffic has been approved since Council passed a bike lane ordinance in 2012.

The spot of the proposed Tyson bike lane.

The spot of the proposed Tyson bike lane.

The lane will be similar to Spruce and Pine in that they will be buffered bike lanes – they’re not the first in that part of the city, but they are the first where City Council is taking action on a lane reduction, since City Council required that a few years back.

Prior to 2012, the Streets Department were able to put in buffered lanes, but City Council adopted an ordinance requiring that any proposed bike lane that removes parking or travel lane has approval by Council. Unfortunately, this provision makes streets less safe for cyclists, pedestrians, and motor vehicle drivers.

The bill passed out of Streets and Services committee and will be headed to full council this week, final passage is expected next week. You can read the bill here.

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