The Bloomberg administration in New York has settled on a revised plan for 34th Street, a major east-west artery across Manhattan. As described in The New York Times, the plan "calls for buses to travel in exclusive terra cotta-hued lanes, similar to a street design recently installed along First and Second Avenues that has speeded up trips along Manhattan’s East Side."
Cars and trucks would be squeezed into just one lane in each direction. "A parking and loading lane would be installed in some places between the bus lanes and the curbside," the paper said. That represents a concession to residents and business owners who were concerned that the initial plan would have blocked automobile access to the front of their buildings.
The Times also said:
"The proposal comes after a difficult few weeks for [Transportation Commissioner Janette] Sadik-Khan, who has been sued over a bicycle lane in Brooklyn and has been the subject of much criticism over the initial 34th Street plan, which naysayers denounced as a detriment to the street’s aesthetic.
"The city has long sought a way to speed up mass transit and to provide more room for pedestrians on 34th Street, a notoriously car-clogged corridor."
“'In the midst of all this hubbub, there has been careful analysis going on behind the scenes,' said Dan Biederman, president of the 34th Street Partnership. 'They have come to a scheme that they believe in, rather than one that’s only the product of political compromise.'”
"Mr. Biederman added that he was pleased that cars would be restricted to a single lane in each direction. 'It is not a good thing for Midtown retail to have a screaming four-lane roadway,' Mr. Biederman said. 'It’s very un-New York.'”
The revised plan also scraps an earlier proposal for establishing a pedestrian plaza that would have banned cars and trucks between Herald Square and the Empire State Building.