New York’s cycling community, like any subculture, had plenty of urban legends and idiosyncratic beliefs. Although no matter how many times Dorthy Rabinowitz repeats it, “riding on the sidewalk is a great idea” is not one of them. Anyway, cyclist lore has usually been relegated to message boards or word-of-mouth in bike shops, but now a crowdsourced map seeks to educate cyclists on dangers, good streets, bad streets and safe routes around the city.
The recommendations on the map range from warnings about cars that regularly break the speed limit on roads, which streets are calm and well-paved and wich ones are horrendous and should be avoided. Like Johnson Avenue, for example, which one bright cyclists points out is useful but is also full of horrendous, deadly potholes. One cyclist even gives a warning as to where police are know to ticket “salmoners” (people who bike the wrong way down the street).
If you have some advice or a warning that can fit in 10 words or less, you’re invited to share it by pinning it to the map, along with whether you’re neutral, positive or negative about riding on a particular street. The map also has routes to a few neighborhoods that have been collected through the use of the running and cycling app, Strava. Of course, as always, wear a helmet and remember the secret handshake to get into the International Cycling Conspiracy Meetup.
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