Birds-eye-view map: Map of the suggested bike corridors

3×3 is excited to announce that our newest additions’,  Kate Fisher and Jakob Winkler, entry to the Van Alen’s Flash Competition for Delancey, Grand & Essex streets received an honorable mention!  They participated in the competition with Michaela Kramer from Tythe Design and Kristopher Steele, a MCP Candidate. The entry advocated a multi-part approach with a plan that includes green space, elevated walkways for both cyclists and pedestrians, exhibition spaces, and a corridor connecting bike and foot traffic to Sara D. Roosevelt Park.

In early 2019, the L train in New York City will shut down for 15 months to repair damage caused during Hurricane Sandy. For the hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers who ride under the East River on the L line every day, the upcoming closure has created a lot of uncertainty. The MTA officials, after a lot of community meetings and planning, has disclosed the intention to send 70 shuttle buses an hour over the Williamsburg Bridge. Once those buses exit the bridge, they will travel across Delancey Street. Additional bike lanes are also being proposed for Delancey Street. Meanwhile, the traffic is piling up on Grand Street from the FDR Drive to Essex Street due to changes in traffic patterns, affecting the residential makeup of the neighborhood. The fast-paced, one-night design competition invited multidisciplinary teams to propose design solutions for moving traffic, pedestrians, bikes, and buses safely at this contested crossroads.

The solution proposes to redesign the Essex-Delancey Corridor by prioritizing pedestrian and bicycle flows, implementing a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) system, and activating in-between spaces as public places for gathering, recreation, commerce, and learning. The aim is to decrease congestion, pollution, and noise while providing a safe thoroughfare for commuters and an active public space for all. The solution involves four interventions that work in tandem.

First, previous parking on Delancey Street will be converted to become elevated pedestrian sidewalks on both sides. Second, BRT pedestrian platforms are built to provide opportunities for public interaction, pre-purchasing of tickets, and exhibitions on the history of the neighborhood, particularly as it connects to recent redevelopments. Third, the center of Delancey Street would be treated with landscape features and a bike path that extends from Williamsburg Bridge that transform the street into a green corridor, reflecting the geography of the historic Sara D. Roosevelt Park and connecting bicyclists and pedestrians to other pedestrian throughways. The corridor would connect to Sara D. Roosevelt Park at Forsyth and Delancey, creating a unique landmark in the area.

The green corridor will also help mitigate the predicted increase in noise and air pollution associated with the L-train shutdown. Lastly, bicyclists and pedestrians entering from the Williamsburg bridge are provided an additional route from the bridge down into the East Village on an elevated pathway that mirrors the Delancey corridor and connects to the Houston bike path. Collectively, the four interventions of the proposed solution elevate the flow and protection of pedestrian and bicyclists, ultimately increasing safety, usability, and interaction through and in the area.

Learn more about the competition at Van Alen’s website.

3x3 Design

is a social innovation consultancy for urban and economic development initiatives. Kate joins the 3x3 team as a Program Manager, bringing a depth of experience in design programs and processes for design challenges both locally and throughout Africa. Jakob, a recent New York transplant from Vienna, Austria, brings his expertise in civic engagement, urban development, and digital equity as 3×3’s new Program Strategist.