How Many New Yorkers Actually Commute to the CBD by Auto?

If you are planning to write a letter urging your local City Council Member to support Mayor Bloomberg’s congestion pricing proposal, the chart below will be useful to you. Based on 2000 census data, it shows the percentage of New York City workers who commute to work by car into Manhattan south of 60th Street (also known as the region’s Central Business District or CBD).

The rate of car commuting into the CBD is, to me, at least, surprisingly low. Queens City Council Member David Weprin insists that congestion pricing will be harmful and unfair to his district. Yet, only 7.40% of the 65,000+ workers who live in his district commute by automobile into the CBD. So, even in the furthest reaches of Eastern Queens, only a small percentage of workers are driving into the CBD for work. On average, only 4.60% of New York City workers commute into the CBD by automobile. And who represents the Council District with the lowest rate of auto commuting? That would be Council Speaker Christine Quinn at 2.00%.

Council district Borough Member Pct of workers who commute to CBD by auto
51 Staten Island Andrew J. Lanza 9.00%
19 Queens Tony Avella 8.80%
50 Staten Island James S. Oddo 8.00%
30 Queens Dennis P. Gallagher 7.50%
23 Queens David I. Weprin 7.40%
49 Staten Island Michael E. McMahon 7.30%
46 Brooklyn Lewis A. Fidler 6.60%
24 Queens James F. Gennaro 6.40%
32 Queens Joseph P. Addabbo, Jr. 6.20%
18 Bronx Annabel Palma 5.60%
27 Queens Leroy G. Comrie, Jr. 5.60%
20 Queens John C. Liu 5.60%
13 Bronx James Vacca 5.50%
11 Bronx G. Oliver Koppell 5.20%
43 Brooklyn Vincent J. Gentile 5.10%
28 Queens Thomas White, Jr. 5.10%
31 Queens James Sanders, Jr. 5.10%
12 Bronx Larry B. Seabrook 5.10%
44 Brooklyn Simcha Felder 4.80%
5 Manhattan Jessica S. Lappin 4.70%
22 Queens Peter F. Vallone, Jr. 4.60%
29 Queens Melinda R. Katz 4.50%
25 Queens Helen Sears 4.50%
47 Brooklyn Domenic M. Recchia, Jr. 4.40%
48 Brooklyn Michael C. Nelson 4.30%
45 Brooklyn Kendall Stewart 4.20%
4 Manhattan Daniel R. Garodnick 4.10%
7 Manhattan Robert Jackson 4.10%
26 Queens Eric N. Gioia 3.90%
42 Brooklyn Charles Barron 3.90%
16 Bronx Helen D. Foster 3.70%
39 Brooklyn Bill de Blasio 3.70%
21 Queens Hiram Monserrate 3.60%
10 Manhattan Miguel Martinez 3.50%
38 Brooklyn Sara M. Gonzalez 3.40%
1 Manhattan Alan J. Gerson 3.40%
8 Manhattan Melissa Mark Viverito 3.30%
9 Manhattan Inez E. Dickens 3.30%
35 Brooklyn Letitia James 3.20%
2 Manhattan Rosie Mendez 3.10%
15 Bronx Joel Rivera 2.80%
33 Brooklyn David Yassky 2.60%
34 Brooklyn Diana Reyna 2.50%
41 Brooklyn Darlene Mealy 2.50%
40 Brooklyn Yvette D. Clarke 2.40%
6 Manhattan Gale A. Brewer 2.40%
14 Bronx Maria Baez 2.40%
36 Brooklyn Albert Vann 2.40%
17 Bronx Maria del Carmen Arroyo 2.30%
37 Brooklyn Erik Martin Dilan 2.20%
3 Manhattan Christine C. Quinn 2.00%


Download a more detailed spreadsheet

  • I strongly urge the Blog to keep profiling the responses and positions from individual political figures like you did last week with Assemb. Millman and Councilwoman Lappin. Councilmember Yassky’s embrace of congestion pricing last week should be acknowledged, and the other positions and arguments these elected folks have should be distributed and discussed.

  • Good stats, Aaron, and fine graphics treatment, as usual. Can you also break out carpoolers from solo drivers, as TSTC did for the 9th Congressional District in the current “Mobilizing the Region,” where it noted that 2-person carpools splitting the cost would pay the same $4 as a flat-fare subway round-trip. It could also be helpful to break out the number that use an MTA bridge or tunnel and thus already pay a toll that would be deducted from the congestion charge.

  • Angus Grieve-Smith

    I just want to point out that the $4 that a carpooler would pay is on top of gas and parking. Of course, if they carpool with a government employee, they don’t have to pay for parking!

  • Funny, Angus!
    Not for long, all you government workers, not for long!

  • rhubarbpie

    …and what percentage of these are government workers? Probably impossible to know, but my bet it is a significant portion.

  • A government employee

    Not all government employees get free parking (I’m one). In fact, I’d venture to guess that most government employees don’t get free parking (there’s a lot of us and I don’t know any who get it).

  • jheights

    can you post a similar chart for state senate and assembly districts? seems that it will be important to write those folks as well.

  • Michael Hansen

    FYI: The council person for Brookyn 40 district is Mathieu Eugene

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