Today’s Headlines

  • Parking Tickets, Subways, and Stadium Subsidies Debated in Final Mayoral Face-off (City Room)
  • The Jay Walder Media Tour Continues With 20 Minutes on Brian Lehrer
  • Lizi Rahman: Why Is It So Hard to Put a Bike Lane on Queens Boulevard? (News)
  • Second Child Passenger Dies After Queens Van Crash; Driver Suspected of Drug Use (News, NY1)
  • Six National Bills to Tell Your Congressperson to Support (MTR)
  • Gotham Gazette Surveys the Transportation Landscape Under Bloomberg
  • 2nd Ave Sagas Fact-Checks Bloomberg’s 7-Line Extension Boasts
  • Long Waits, Bus Bunching, and Other Horror Stories From B61 Riders (Gothamist)
  • Suspension of Alt-Side Parking an Ecstatic Experience for Riverdale Car Owners (News)
  • Princetonites Ride Their New Bike-Share Bikes Home, Direct From Queens Factory (City Room)
  • Even Snug in Bed, You’re Not Safe From Out-of-Control Motorists (CNN)

More headlines over at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • How intoxicated do you have to be before “stealing a car and driving it into my ex’s bedroom” becomes a realistic idea?

  • My fave from the News article:

    In response to Councilman Avella’s letter, the transportation commissioner’s office responded, “The request to place a bike lane on Queens Blvd., maintain flow without increasing congestion and maintain as many parking spots as possible conflicts with our goals for continued safety improvements for this corridor.”

    Safety? Who needs safety? We need more parking!

  • clever-title

    Why is “The couple… accepting donations through the Bank of America to replace items lost in the incident?” This wasn’t like a hurricane or earthquake – I think everyone has a pretty good idea of who is responsible for the damage and owes restitution to them.

  • Car Free Nation

    I don’t have a car, but I hate the alternate side parking rules in residential neighborhoods, and would rejoice like the Riverdale drivers if they went away in my neighborhood permanently. I believe that they cause a great deal of trouble for what is at best a tenuous benefit. I don’t think the sanitation machines leave the streets that much cleaner than what would be achieved through homeowners taking care of the space in front of their buildings (as demonstrated that when they stop the machines, there is no noticeable change in cleanliness). The machines are loud, spew pollution, and seem extremely hazardous to cyclists. Automobile owners, who I think for the most part are foolish for having a car in NYC and feel an undue sense of entitlement in storing their cars on the nyc streets, have to change their schedules to accommodate the cleaning. This just seems like a tremendous waste for what could be a productive use of their time.

    And most importantly, the actual moving of the cars creates a hazardous condition for cyclists.

    The only valid argument (from a complete streets perspective) in favor, that I can think of, is that the rules make owning a car so inconvenient that many people give up their cars rather than deal with the inconvenience. But if that is our goal (and I think it’s a worthy one), then I’d rather we push for market based pricing, and at least use the income to help improve the subways, the schools, etc.

    I think this is a place where TA and the complete streets movement could ally itself with car owners, and perhaps get true parking reform. For example, we’ll advocate for ending alternate side rules if we can have munimeters on all the streets that its removed from.

  • Car Free, thanks for the thoughtful post. Did you check out the 21-page PDF study that DOT did when they suspended ASP in Park Slope? ASP increased traffic volume by 19% on mornings when it was in effect.

    But how is a loud, slow-moving streetsweeper a hazard to cyclists? Please elaborate.

  • > I think everyone has a pretty good idea of who is responsible for the damage and owes restitution to them.

    This is America, dogg, they’ll get their restitution — when the civil justice system is through. Which might be 2012.

  • Car Free Nation

    On the Streetsweeper… I’ve been cycling with my kids, and when that thing is sweeping the street, it just gets my protective parental juices flowing. You’re probably right that there’s little actual danger.

  • I do think street sweepers have a role in removing debris from the margin of the roadway that would otherwise pose an obstacle (or conceal hazards) for bicyclists. You don’t notice this on streets with parking lane, but where there is no parking lane and bicyclists are riding near the curb, like on the Central Park transverses, there needs to be street sweeping. Especially following the recent sotrms, there were large branches posing a serious hazard that were allowed to accumulate and sit for weeks.

  • James

    Ben: I live in Riverdale, own and use a car during the week to get to work in the suburbs when necessary, but am also a bike commuter when I can be as consider myself to be a livable streets advocate. The continual snark against my neighborhood on this blog is getting old. Yeah, I know there is a motorhead mentality that frequently rears its ugly head among people here. In all honesty, it’s no different than the sentiment you see in residents of Pelham Bay, or St. Albans, or any of a dozen or more other city neighborhoods far from the Manhattan core. Why do you single out Riverdale? Should I expect to see a snarky little headline about Bayside or Tottenville next?

  • J:Lai

    I agree that street sweeping is of little benefit on most streets. However, I don’t think car owners will easily give up their access to free street parking, even though they may be paying in time spent moving the car and looking for parking.

    A system of muni-meters and neighborhood parking permits would be a logical way to deal with parking in most areas of the city, but the sense of entitlement you allude to means any attempt to charge for formerly free parking will be met with resistance.

  • Ian Turner
  • James: I disagree with the premise that Streetsblog singles out Riverdale with malicious intent. The neighborhood does come up with disproportionate frequency in the headline stack, but that’s mostly because the Riverdale Press puts out a regular online edition.

    In the case of today’s alt-side parking story, we noted the same type of rejoicing when DOT suspended the rules in Park Slope last year.

  • James

    Ben, the Riverdale Press piece is titled “Read it and sleep! Alt-side parking getting a rest in Riverdale”. The snarky headline you are using here on Streetsblog is “Suspension of alt-side parking an ecstatic experience for Riverdale Car Owners”. Back in September, you had a headline titled “Riverdale Press Editors Give Thanks for Fresh Asphalt and Free Bridges”, when that wasn’t even the gist of the Riverdale Press piece at all, which was titled “Entropy in the Big City”. The snarky Post-style headlines here are clearly becoming a trend. I fully acknowledge that many of the residents here have a suburban mindset when it comes to transportation, but to continually reinforce the meme that the neighborhood is just one big auto-addicted traffic sewer isn’t necessarily productive for the goals we want to achieve.

  • Whenever I see a street sweeper coming, I turn around, flee, change my route, whatever it takes to get away. The filth those things churn up gets all over my clothes, onto my face, and into my eyes. It’s worst when the weather is dry and the wind is blowing the wrong way.

  • There is an article in today’s WSJ about a vehicle editor changing to a car-free lifestyle in DC. It was the front of the personal section.

  • As much as I both hate mechanized street sweepers and bad trolls, I’m gonna bite Ian’s:

    > Dangerous street sweepers:

    Guns aren’t dangerous, mishandling them is dangerous. It’s like Bike Snob says: Your enemy isn’t guns, it’s idiots, and idiots come in all forms, from Federal Homeland Security Police to dudes on cycles wearing spandex.

    Come TSHTF, you might be pretty annoyed that you don’t have yourself a fully-automaic 12ga!

  • Ian Turner


    In case you missed it, that was an attempt at humor.