City and State Install Concrete Barriers Next to Hudson River Bike Path After Attack

Concrete jersey barriers on the Hudson River bike path. Photo by @shuttersny.

The Hudson River bike path is getting concrete barriers below 59th Street to prevent — or at least slow — attacks like the one on Tuesday that killed 8 people on the bike path in Tribeca.

The city is installing concrete cubes at pedestrian intersections, and the state is installing longer concrete jersey barriers at vehicle intersections, according to a spokesman for the mayor. The process of putting the barriers in has already begun.

Bicyclists have been asking for this protection for years, local rider Glenn Mcanamana noted.

“As a regular Greenway user this added protection against stray vehicles on the Greenway is welcomed, yet long overdue considering the dangers highlighted by the deaths of Eric Ng and Dr. Henry Nacht over ten years ago,” he wrote.

Here’s what much of the path has looked like, with flexible plastic signs instead of barriers.

Photo by Glenn Mcanamana.

Mcanamana said he wants the city to use bollards like the one below, so they’ll be less obtrusive but still offer protection.

Photo by Glenn Mcanamana.

Others riders expressed dismay about the difficulty of navigating the large barriers:

NEWS | 44 comments | permalink
    1. geoff says:

      what a dilemma for city officials, everywhere. it’s playing out like a game of whack-a-mole. also, i don’t see an end game, not at this level of participation. i sure hope things get diplomatic, and soon. is that even possible to consider these days?

    2. B. Echols says:

      Stupidest response imaginable. Just posturing. Takes away one of the few remaining truly pleasurable bike routes in Manhattan.

    3. Aaron Biller says:

      The dotards in charge should have put these bollards and barriers up long ago. Cyclists just have to accept that this is the world we live in. Whining about inconveniences is better than being the next victim.

      • joe says:

        Well, this morning I just witnessed two cyclists nearly hit each other head on because of the Jersey barriers. The bollards are needed, but these barriers will cause ultimately way more injuries than before. They were a rash response to the City’s negligence (in failing to have bollards up along the path). If this were the summer, I would give them a couple of weeks before outcry requires their removal.

      • Margaret says:

        But those aren’t the only two choices Aaron. Activists have been requesting bollards for around a decade and praying the city and state would get it together to act ahead of tragedy.

        Think of the differences between 1) shutting down a highway entirely, 2) slowing every driver to 5 mph or stopping them for a conversation with police, 3) adding guardrails at known dangerous curves, or 4) saying you prefer to do absolutely nothing.

        I’m pretty sure you’d suggest option 3! What the city has done here is jumped from ten years of 4) straight to 2) with zero common sense or community input.

      • Cato says:

        “Whining about inconveniences is better than being the next victim.”

        Very nicely said.

      • Alta says:

        Would drivers accept if we put these barriers up at every crosswalk to prevent drivers from hitting pedestrians while turning?

        There is a more elegant way to accomplish this, and hopefully these get replaced with upright bollards.

    4. uwsbiker says:

      The bollards are a reasonable tradeoff but the concrete barriers are a greater risk than what they are trying to protect from. The south-bound bike line is effectively closed at every intersection. This forces bicyclists to either go right and risk hitting runners/pedestrians, or left and risk a head-on collision with northbound cyclists. We know that either can cause serious injury even death. The way I view it the concrete barriers are making things more dangerous for bikers.

    5. wombatNYC says:

      How about blocking the entry ways / driveway fro street to path rather then the bike path itself . The tour de France peloton riders are not going to like these barriers

    6. Scott says:

      I thought walls didn’t work. Now I’m thoroughly confused.

    7. BillyNYC says:

      It’s a shame that we have to live this way coming from the past and looking at the future is the way that were in a have to live from now on. Not being selfish but in away I’m happy the there putting up barriers in the bike paths up and down the Westside because the bikers are speed demons and they’re consistently running into pedestrians and their pets. Now let’s do something in Central Park about the speed bikers who are rude and that need discipline !!!!!

    8. Maria says:

      This is the stupidest solution possible. There will be bottlenecks of 30 people. Hmmm….just like sitting ducks. And how safe are these? They look treacherous. There have to be better solutions that those concrete slabs. Let’s hope this is temporary or there will be a pile up of more bodies than you can imagine!

    9. GGomez says:

      The path is now no longer enjoyable to bike. The slim bollards would have done the job of stopping a vehicle without making the path an obstacle course.

    10. AC says:

      Concrete Jersey Barriers?? A knee jerk reaction and not the proper solution.

      Bollards placed right in the middle (along the double yellow lines) would have been just as protective and less obstructive. If you’re going to use Jersey Barriers inside the path, why even have the bike lanes??

    11. Laura says:

      I hope the large jersey barriers are temporary and that less obtrusive bollards will be installed at some point. The larger barriers are difficult to see at night and make navigating the intersections dangerous, particularly given the volume of traffic on the bike path.

    12. young_man! says:

      There is probably a better way to keep vehicles off the bike path but at least these barriers will slow down the “racers” who disrespect both pedestrians and regular commuting or leisure bikers. Need these up by the 79 St boat basin too.

      No doubt this is a temporary quick fix and bollards will go up at vehicle access points as soon as the city finds a contractor who can install them at $1million each.

    13. feelinghopeless says:

      How do you win a war against an enemy that is not afraid to die?

      • Independent says:

        How do you win a war against an enemy that is not afraid to die?

        By avoiding such a war in the first place.

        1.) Stop inviting them; complete moratorium on nearly ALL immigration. We already have more than enough people and our resources are already overstrained. End “diversity visa” folly.

        2.) Stop creating such enemies; stop invading and meddling in other countries and massacring their civilians.

        Time is running-out. If we do not defeat the Invade the World/ Invite the World/ In Hock to the World Globalist beast soon, it will devour us.

        • UWSHebrew says:

          most articulate, truly important opinion post I’ve ever seen on westsiderag. unfortunately this will be viewed by most on here as racist and reactionary. they prefer posts regarding balloons that say “new york strong”.

        • Zulu says:

          GDP and immigration are directly proportional. Without immigration our GDP takes a hit. GDP and standard of living are also linked. So if we get no immigration our standard of living goes down as the market would shrink.

          • Independent says:

            Standard-of-living and quality-of-life depend upon much more than GDP. The arguments you cite are propaganda (see links below for refutations) that, along with emotional appeals to humanitarian sensibilities and “Nation of Immigrants”/ Ellis Island sentimentality, the billionaire ruling elites use as pretexts to cover their true motives for promoting mass third-world immigration: cheap labor, depression of wages and the replacement of the native population with one that will provide the votes that said elites need in order to stay in power.

            Notable figures who have recognized the detrimental effects that unchecked immigration had upon their constituencies and favored restricting it have by no means been limited-to the Right and include Barbara Jordan, Coretta Scott King and Samuel Gompers.

            • Zulu says:

              Well, I only opened Barbara Jordan’s link and right there from the very beginning of the article she contradicts what you said about no more immigration.

          • Independent says:

            [replaces previous]

            Standard-of-living and quality-of-life depend upon much more than GDP. The arguments you cite are propaganda (refutations to which can be found at the sites I link-to below) that the ruling class deceptively employs, along with emotional appeals to humanitarian sensibilities and “Nation of Immigrants” sentimentality, as pretexts to promote mass third-world immigration. Their real reasons for doing so are that it provides these billionaire, predatory elites with cheap labor, depression of wages and the votes they need to stay in power.

            Those who have realized this have by no means been found only on the Right. Barbara Jordan, Coretta Scott King and Samuel Gompers, to take three notable examples, all supported restricting immigration.

        • RK says:

          This is RACIST and REACTIONARY!

          NEW YORK STRONG!!

        • dj says:

          Spot on, Independent (and I completely agree with UWSHebrew – this is the best post I’ve seen on westsiderag). The diversity visa lottery is madness. Add to that chain migration (not to mention birthright citizenship) and we really are doomed. Our Founding Fathers knew better than to think ‘diversity’ is the foundation for a cohesive society. But instead of taking action on the immigration problem, here we are talking about concrete barriers along bike paths. By the time people wake up, it will be too late (it probably already is).

        • Independent says:

          Thank you UWSHebrew and dj. It is always encouraging to see my efforts appreciated.

    14. DaHa says:

      This should be a temporary solution with bollards installed as a permanent fix. After riding downtown this AM it is very apparent that the jersey barriers will cause accidents and injuries to both joggers and cyclists. I can’t help but wonder why this wasn’t thought through when the path was planned.

    15. Confused says:

      I don’t understand at all. Is there a reason that they wouldn’t put these barriers between the bike path and the road rather than in the middle of the path? What am I missing?

    16. Riki says:

      Is there any way to find out if these are temporary? What does DOT have to say about this?

    17. John says:

      I’ve now cycled four times past these ill-positioned behemoths. They are exceedingly dangerous for cyclists and pedestrians. As some have pointed out, they’re positioned to direct southbound cyclists either head-on into northbound ones or else way over into the limited pedestrian zone. Just hideous, stupid, ugly security theater after-the-fact. Bollards, sure… This insanity? Wait for the scores of accidents and lawsuits.

    18. Carlos says:

      This is cutting off your nose to spite your face. Attacks like this get a lot of publicity but are incredibly rare. You cannot live your life in fear of six sigma events. I feel the same way about the nightmare that is airport security – it is ridiculous how much time and money is wasted on dealing with TSA.

      • RK says:

        Totally agree. I think we should mandate basic probability and statistics in high school, partially to help people develop a better sense of risk assessment.

        If you look at the odds of dying from a terrorist event, compared to, say, diabetes or heart disease, it would compel you to stop worrying about terrorists and put down the cheeseburger.

        Also basic financial math, so Suze Orman doesn’t have to explain why paying off your home loan with your credit card is a bad idea. Or how mortgages and car loans work.

    19. nycityny says:

      Out-of-touch politicians looking for the most visible yet least feasible way to do something positive. Always looking back at the last tragedy rather than ahead to prevent new ones – like the ones these new obtrusive barriers will cause.

    20. Mel says:

      This is a crazy response. What about the miles and miles of sidewalks where people walk. Should we barricade them in to? What about Central Park drive. This response is so reactionary. Why not just get rid of cars all together?

    21. Bonnie says:

      Those steel poles might look better. Just sayin.

    22. your neighbor says:

      They should put these on the marathon course “for the safety of the runners” – that’ll create quite a ruckus.

    23. cyclist UWS says:

      Hoping this is a temporary as I often use the bike path and it is no longer enjoyable or safe w/ the jersey barriers in place. If the City & State had foresight and installed protective bollards this terrible event would not have occurred. The jersey barriers placed across the bike lanes are an dangerous obstruction and will result in numerous accident with serious injuries to bicyclist and pedestrians. The Ciy and State just created a more dangerous situation. Law suits will be pouring in against the City and State. Bollards are the obvious solution.

    24. MC says:

      politicians have no clue how to prevent such attacks. they only look back and reactively throw together something just to SHOW that they are doing something. “look! we’re busy protecting you!” or “look! we’re marching with other politicians!” ad nauseum.

    25. js says:

      Sounds like barriers will prevent access by ambulances and police cars?

      What happens if someone is hurt, needs ambulance?

      • RK says:

        They would drive down 12th ave and jump over the partition. An ambulance needed to retrieve me from the bike path near 105th st, they just blocked the right lane of the southbound west side highway!

        Nice try though.

    26. RK says:

      Stop complaining here, call 311 instead. I’m sure this was a short-term reaction because the optics of doing nothing would be pretty crappy. The louder the complaining, the faster this will be rectified, but complaining on WSR doesn’t count.