Today’s Headlines

  • The U.S.-China Electric Car Pact Won’t Do a Thing to Improve Energy-Efficient City Living (Dot Earth)
  • Chicago Alderman: We Shoulda Raised Meter Rates Ourselves and Kept the Cash (NYT/CNC)
  • Jeep Driver Kills Brooklyn Grandmother One Block From Her Home; No Charges Filed (Post)
  • Where Is Transit Ridership Increasing the Most in America? (Planetizen)
  • Subway Groping, Sexual Harassment Are Worst Where Trains Are Most Crowded (City Room)
  • TLC to Launch Cab-Sharing at Three Locations Next Month (News)
  • California Wants to Make Pay-as-You-Drive Insurance Happen (TreeHugger)
  • "Brooklyn Speaks" Files Its First Lawsuit Against Atlantic Yards (Bklyn Paper, News)
  • City, Port Authority Have No Money for a New West Side Bus Garage (Chelsea Now)
  • Port Authority Eyes Switch to Totally Cashless Tolling (NY1)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • vnm

    Re TLC cab sharing.

    I think a formal or informal version of reduced-fare cab sharing has existed for many years to serve York Avenue to Wall Street travel. Once a cab loads up four people at designated corners, they’re off to the Financial District. Does anyone have more info about this?

  • vnm,

    The York/79th to Wall street cab share arrangement has been the subject of considerable discussion at recent Community Board 8 Transportation Committee meetings. From what I gather, the TLC established a special fare for this route (akin to the flat fare to JFK airport) and the service became very popular with local residents, who would spontaneously pool into groups at the 79th St. cab stand, ride together and split the flat fare.

    Apparently the cab drivers found that these flat fare runs to Wall Street were more lucrative than randomly cruising for passengers, and began refusing passengers at 79th and York except for those offering to pay the flat fare to Wall Street. This generated antagonism among some in the neighborhood. (No one likes being turned down by an on-duty cabbie).

    I don’t think any definitive action has been taken, but my impression is that the CB is on course to recommend to the TLC the abolition of the flat fare. Under the proposed recommendation, passengers would still be able to spontaneously pool and share the cost of a cab ride to Wall Street, but it would have to be a metered fare.

  • Larry Littlefield

    “The people own the asset to be used today for this generation of people and not for 2050,” Mr. Daley said soon after the Council’s parking meter vote last December. “Our responsibility is to help the generation right now.”

    In fact, why invest in any infrastructure, if letting it degrade won’t affect people for 20 years? And why not borrow on top of that?

    And why not slash education services, and have “people right now” retire earlier?

    Etc. etc. etc.

    Daley isn’t just speaking for himself, and he isn’t just speaking about the parking meters and Chicago Tollway, or even the public sector. He is speaking about the future of the United States, built of over 200 years, based in over 50.

  • P

    When I read that quote from Daley I knew Larry would have something to say. Rightfully.

  • Bill

    An interesting piece on Le Corbusier in City Journal: http://www.city-journal.org/2009/19_4_otbie-le-corbusier.html

    Excerpt: “Roads were impressive thoroughfares for rushing along at the highest possible speed (he had an obsession with fast cars and airplanes), which therefore had a defined purpose and gave rise to no disorderly human interactions. The street, by contrast, was unpredictable, incalculable, and deeply social. Le Corbusier wanted to be to the city what pasteurization is to cheese.”

  • J:Lai

    Larry, I think you are misinterpreting Daley’s quote, although admittedly it is not that clear.
    When there is an asset that produces long term cash flows, like the city’s ability to collect meter fees for parking, it is a good thing if the owner can get the present value of those future revenue streams immediately.
    That is how big projects, like building transit infrastructure, get financed. Without this ability, you can’t do anything on a large scale.
    Being able to get the money today means you can use it for the benefit of people today AND build things that will still have value generations into the future.
    For instance, if NYC securitized its meter fees, it could use the upfront payment to finance construction of new rail lines. This would create benefits immediately in terms of new jobs (and graft, and kickbacks), and well into the future as the transportation infrastructure would be improved.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Chicago isn’t building anything that will provide any benefits. All the money will be gone in a few years.

  • Hey, we’re already selling Bruce Ratner a valuable railyard for a fraction of its value. Why not securitize our parking meter fees to build his basketball arena — something we really need?!!