Did you ever wonder why there is an old bike route sign midblock on Colden Street and Kalmia Avenue? So did we, until our friend Stephen Bauman did a little research to help solve the neighborhood mystery and teach us about the cycling infrastructure from four decades ago.
On September 9th, 1973 the New York Times columnist David C. Berliner wrote about a proposed bike route through Eastern Queens (below). In it, he quotes Manuel Carballo (acting highway commissioner at the time) who said, “A bikeway in this part of Queens provides a central facility for the borough and it’s part of an over all network we are planning for the whole city. We can call this an impressive start.”
The above map clearly shows Colden Street along the route. This city wide network has evolved and changed since the 1970s often in fits and starts. The infrastructure improvements since then are still not complete and some older improvements have be removed or forgotten. Engineering practices have improved and the cost of our infrastructure projects has increased (the entire original route was only $249,662 which was split between the Transit Administration and the Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Affairs Administration). However the drive to improve our neighborhood can never be forgotten.
The Eastern Queens Greenway’s one goal is to create a family safe route between Flushing Meadows and Alley Pond Park. In this article we see that same goal going back to the Lindsay administration. Working together with our community we can be a fresh coalition, working to complete our city’s dream. You can help us by discussing this project with your community and by signing our petition so your voice is heard.
If you run across any other interesting documents or infrastructure requests, let us know and we can share them with the rest of the community.