As the NY Times reported earlier in October, "a new bicycle-lane design on 9th Avenue was announced in September. Workers began at 23rd Street and progressed southward. The work is mostly completed, said Ted Timbers, a spokesman for the Transportation Department, including markings and signs. About 20 single-car parking spaces were eliminated as part of the redesign; Muni-Meters, which control multiple spaces, were installed in their place.
Also being tested on the seven-block stretch of Ninth Avenue in Chelsea is a raised traffic island at each intersection, extending into the avenue. Called a ‘’pedestrian refuge,'’ the island the effect of shortening the distance traveled to cross the street to 45 feet, from 70 feet. Those traffic islands are still being installed, and an official ceremony to mark the completion of the redesign will be held once that work is finished, Mr. Timbers said."
Now here's the thing. The new Apple store opened on 9th and 14th street this evening at 6pm. A friend of mine pointed out that these two events are probably connected....(look at the island in the middle of 9th Avenue at 14th street).