Brooklyn council members Shahana Hanif, Rita Joseph and Crystal Hudson are urging New York City Parks to allow electric bikes in Prospect Park.
The council members penned a letter to NYC Parks Commissioner on Dec. 20, urging the parks department to work with Prospect Park Alliance to establish a policy that permits e-bike users. Their districts all include portions of Prospect Park.
“The parks department has no justification for classifying e-bikes in the same category as SUVs or trucks,” states the letter.
“The department’s current blanket ban on e-bikes in Prospect Park sends the wrong message about our city’s values.”
Currently, e-bikes are not allowed in Prospect Park because the parks department defines
e-bikes as motor vehicles, putting them in the same category as everything from 4,000-pound trucks to 6,000-pound SUVs that may prove deadly to pedestrians and cyclists alike in the event of a crash.
“E-bikes make moving around our city more accessible to more people, while also reducing vehicle usage by replacing car trips,” said Kathy Park Price, Brooklyn organizer at Transportation Alternatives.
“Prospect Park’s outright ban on e-bikes — which are legal to ride on New York City streets — makes Prospect Park’s car-free bike lanes unusable to far too many New Yorkers, including delivery workers who rely on e-bikes for their work and many families. We encourage the Prospect Park Alliance and NYC Parks to work together to create a more inclusive policy that allows e-bikes,” said Price.
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