On TV Tonight…

For those who are not tuning in to the American Idol season finale tonight (Kris is going to win, watch), here are two shows worth looking out for:

  • PBS’s Blueprint America series will be airing "Road to the Future" tonight at 8pm in New York City. Check your local PBS station for times. Part of a PBS series on the country’s aging and changing infrastructure, the documentary examines the choices we can make as the country invests in its infrastructure, and how they can affect the way we live. Focusing in on three cities, New York, Denver and Portland, it features interviews with a whole host of interesting subjects including NYC DOT commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan, Portland Mayor Sam Adams, BikePortland blog maestro Jonathan Maus and Columbia University’s Owen Gutfreund, author of "20th Century Sprawl." It should be a good one. Check their web site for a preview.
  • I’ve also been told that the 11 pm10 pm local news on Fox channel 5 is going to run a report tonight on a Brooklyn resident named Miguel Padro who was arrested the other day for bicycling on the sidewalk on his way to work at the Prospect Park Tennis Center. I haven’t spoken with Padro yet to get the story for myself, but word has it the NYPD held him in jail for 24 hours without a phone call despite the fact that he had no oustanding summonses or any problems with his record. Padro’s wife and employer were really shaken up by the arrest and worried that he’d been kidnapped or killed. It sounds like a completely insane story but given the NYPD’s increasingly random, senseless crackdowns on bicyclists it is entirely believable. I’m looking forward to seeing the Fox News piece and talking to Padro for myself before getting too worked up about this.
  • I wonder if Miguel was arrested by these guys? http://www.flickr.com/photos/depechetraff/3548946280/

  • Fox News airs at 10 p.m.

    And while Miguel Padro was rotting in a cell for riding his bike on the sidewalk, the guy who ran his SUV (allegedly at 60 MPH, according to one eyewitness) into a pedestrian on 8th Avenue left the scene without a summons.

    No justice, no peace.

  • flatbush

    The streets around the parade grounds and the tennis center are not safe for biking at all. No bike lanes, cars that speed to and from and around Park Circle…it’s a death trap for cyclists. During the week, the sidewalks are generally deserted! I know it’s technically illegal to ride on the sidewalk, but couldn’t the cops use some discretion? If he was riding on the sidewalk on a busy Saturday, maybe I could understand citing him or giving him a ticket. (Arresting? A bit extreme, no?)

    Amazing that they are putting a bike lane on Prospect Park West, adding bike lanes all over the Slope, but the poorer side of the park has few approaches for bikes and about zero bike lanes. No wonder someone would ride on the sidewalk!

  • You bring up a great point, flatbush, regarding the differences on either side of the park regarding bike lanes, etc….. Pretty sickening IMO

  • anonymous

    I bet the sidewalk was 95% void of pedestrians when he was arrested. Gigantic sidewalks like in front of the Atlantic Center seem like a waste of space when bikes aren’t allowed. Needless to say, biking on Atlantic Avenue is not a safe option.

  • flatbush

    Would cops have arrested a dad riding on the sidewalk with his kid on Prospect Park West? Just seems a bit extreme.

  • I yelled at a cop on the sidewalk on Montague Street this morning. As he approached: “Officer, if I were doing that *points at his bike*, would you ticket me?”

    (He gave me a filthy look and didn’t stop or respond.)

  • Glenn

    Ah, so many double standards, so little time to enforce them all

  • flatbush & oscarfrye,

    You guys need to get out in your neighborhood, in that case, and make some noise. Start a petition, visit your Council members, nag DOT. Community Board 6 is no great shakes when it comes to progressive transportation policy (case in point, last week’s vote seeking to delay the PPW bike lane), but CB7 makes them look like the Copenhagen City Council.

  • J. Mork

    I missed Blueprint…but it looks like it’s on again at 1 am on (early) Friday morning on ch. 13 in New York.

  • Geck

    If you missed Road to the Future, you can watch it on line at the link above.

  • Ken

    Aaron was right about Kris! Streetsblog does it again!

  • When “Road to the Future” looked back at NYC’s transit history, I thought that it would have been interesting to see what pre-automobile transit was like in Denver using archival footage and photos. Or for that matter Houston, Atlanta, Los Angeles, St. Louis aka St. Louie.

  • gecko

    NYC DoT Commissioner Sadik-Khan on PBS’s “Road to the Future” was great as always describing how she’s helping to create a very positive transportation future and some of the magic required to navigate the mindboggling diversity of opinions, individuals, and petty self-interest obsessions in this very difficult city.

  • bc

    I missed last night’s broadcast and google isn’t coming up with anything, what’s the story with Miguel, is it as ridiculous as it sounds?

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