\We visited Chinatown and Time Square on March 26th. Time Square is beautiful, but I
wanted to label out Chinatown since we also have a Chinatown in San Francisco. I compared the
similarities between Manhattan Chinatown and San Francisco Chinatown. Both of these two
Chinatowns have many grocery stores, restaurants, intersections. But compared to SF
Chinatown, New York’s Chinatown definitely has more pedestrians, more cyclists, more trucks,
and more cars. Kyle was the first person that we met up with. He taught us about the expanded
sidewalks that are for pedestrians. They are painted brown so that drivers could see it clearly and
will not park in those areas. It was also interesting that New York’s Chinatown has long narrow
park in the middle of a street that people could rest and hang out in. While people were resting,
there were a few cyclists biking on the bike lanes which were in the little park. There were also
many protected bike lanes.
In one street there was a phase were people could cross in a L shape to go towards the
opposite end without stopping for the next light. This is very common in San Francisco’s
Chinatown we call this a scramble and people can cross diagonally. Kyle had said wider lanes
made drivers drive faster, so they changed it to make it narrower which more sidewalk space.
The way the bike lanes got improved was very interesting to me. It didn’t needed as much
funding as other projects and can probably help bikers in San Francisco as well.
On some of the streets, there were protected bike lanes that were protected by parked cars
which not only providing the drivers parking space, but also providing safer lanes for cyclists. It
was a very smart idea. In my opinion, we should also have bike lanes like that on Market Street
in San Francisco. Even though the roads in New York are changing, I still saw many jaywalkers.
Without New Yorkers’ cooperation, Vision Zero in New York will never be successful. It seems
like there is still a long way for Vision Zero to complete their mission.
-Roy Yu, Christina Cui