GWB Cable Project to Include Safety Retrofits for Cyclists, Pedestrians

T.A. Commends Port Authority for Commitment to Remove Stairs and Dangerous Hairpin Turn

March 19, 2014
Brian Zumhagen 646-873-6008

Transportation Alternatives commends the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey for incorporating key safety and access retrofits for pedestrians and bicyclists on the George Washington Bridge during the upcoming cable replacement project.

"These important improvements -- forged in close collaboration with community partners -- will serve the increasing number of bicyclists and pedestrians who use the bridge for both commuting and recreation, said Paul Steely White, Executive Director of Transportation Alternatives. "We are working with the Port Authority and people who bike and walk across the bridge to help make sure the improvements are completed as quickly as possible," he said.

The George Washington Bridge is a critical connector for two of the most popular cycling routes on the east coast: Manhattan's Hudson River Greenway and Route 9W, an increasingly popular recreational route to the Palisades, Piermont, Nyack and Bear Mountain State Park. On a good day, the GWB accommodates thousands of bicyclists and pedestrians. But for years, non-motorized bridge users have contended with formidable safety and access issues: the cumbersome navigation of several flights of stairs on the north path and a dangerous hairpin turn on the Manhattan approach to the south path.

Officials have agreed to remove the stairs and the hairpin turn, and to improve approaches on both sides of the path. "We are extremely pleased that the Port Authority has agreed to address both of these key issues--and more," White says. "It is a testament to the goodwill, good faith, and visionary leadership that the Port Authority has exhibited for the duration of this project. Transportation Alternatives looks forward to working in close cooperation to ensure that the cable replacement project proceeds with minimum inconvenience to bikers, pedestrians and motorists alike."