City Finally Finishes Eight-Year-Long Truck Study

Yesterday, the Department of Transportation announced the publication of its Truck Route Management and Community Impact Reduction Study. The study, which began over eight years ago (PDF), recommends the establishment of an Office of Freight Mobility, new educational materials and public outreach efforts, improved street signs, better enforcement, and some policy and regulatory changes — for example, requiring trucks over 26,000 pounds operating on city streets to be equipped with a convex mirror to help reduce blind spots.

The Tri-State Transportation Campaign has, for some time now, been the leading organization pushing New York City to do a better job of managing truck traffic. Executive Director Jon Orcutt says the long-awaited study signals "the end of an era" and offers some good news and some bad:

The good news is that the city can no longer claim they are studying the issue. They have to start acting. Also, the study acknowledges that it is possible for more trucks to be directed to limited access roads where they belong.

There are three pieces of bad news. First, it is shocking that it took so long to come up with these relatively elementary recommendations. Second, it is disappointing that basic traffic-calming street designs, like gateway treatments that might discourage trucks from turning down neighborhood streets, play little role in what the city apparently plans to do. Finally, it is bad news that the city is saying changes in truck routing behavior will require much stronger application of police resources. Historically this has been a losing proposition for traffic-related rules; as, for instance, with painted bicycle and bus lanes which drivers are allowed to violate with impunity.


City Council Poised to Require Side Guards on 10,000 Trucks by 2024

The City Council transportation committee unanimously passed a bill this afternoon that would require side guards, which keep pedestrians and cyclists from being swept beneath a truck’s rear wheels, on approximately 10,000 New York City trucks by 2024. The legislation, likely to pass the full council tomorrow, mandates the add-ons not just for city-owned trucks but also for private trash haulers. The […]

Hunts Point to Cuomo: Get Trucks Off Local Bronx Streets

Hunts Point is one of New York City’s largest industrial hubs, generating 15,000 truck trips every day over local streets in one of the city’s poorest neighborhoods. The result? Pollution and dangerous streets for residents, as well as wasted resources for businesses. Yesterday, the city released a mammoth study of land use and transportation in […]