Manhattan BP Stringer Calls on NYC to Seek Federal Funds

$15 Million in Grants Are Available for the Study of Congestion Pricing

stringer.jpgIt’s rare that you see someone on the inside of New York City’s political power structure doing anything that looks even remotely like picking a public fight with Mayor Michael Bloomberg. That is why this press release from Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer caught my eye. Stringer, who hosted an important conference on New York City transportation policy at Columbia University in October, has been making great use of his bully pulpit as a catalyst for transportation policy reform. While he doesn’t criticize Bloomberg by name, his statement reads as a pretty direct rebuke of the Mayor’s apparent brush off of Growth or Gridlock, the Partnership for New York City’s recently released study finding that traffic congestion costs New York City at least $13 billion a year.

From the Borough President’s press release:

Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer today said that New York City should seek federal funding from the US Department of Transportation (DOT) to explore a local value pricing pilot program in order to ease the congestion on New York City’s streets.

DOT has $15 million in grants available for local value pricing pilot programs. Stringer said that given real-world successes with the policy elsewhere, New York City had an obligation to seek these funds and to determine whether value pricing would be a feasible and equitable solution for New York City’s transportation woes. 

"Clearly the time has come for our City to seek out and explore bold solutions to our transportation crisis," Borough President Stringer said. "Value pricing has reduced congestion in major cities around the world and it would be wrong to brush it off without even exploring its feasibility here in New York City. It may not be the answer to our traffic problems but unless we study the impacts, we will never know."

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