Today’s Headlines

  • Markowitz Takes PPW Data Paranoia to a New Level (CBS2)
  • Brooklyn Beep Wants to Spend NYPD Resources Duplicating DOT’s PPW Analysis (Patch)
  • When Will Marty Admit He Was Wrong? (Naparstek, Brooklyn Spoke)
  • Steely White: Eric Ulrich Doesn’t Expect Bike License Bill to Move (Gothamist)
  • MTA to Consider $300K in Bus Service Cuts Across 40 Routes (Post)
  • David Greenfield Comes Out With the Mother of All Insipid Parking Giveaways (News)
  • SI Traffic Agent Assaulted By Snowball-Hurling Jerk (Post)
  • Post Columnists Goodwin and Peyser Both Take Gratuitous Swipes at NYC Bike Policy
  • The News Backs Bloomberg’s Plan to Allow Street Hails for Livery Cabs
  • This Ex-Cabbie Does Not (NYT)
  • What’s Taking So Long to Plow the PPW Bike Lane? (Bklyn Paper)

More headlines at Streetsblog Capitol Hill

  • Ben from Harlem

    One thing that’s funny to me is that bike lanes actually make Brooklyn a more appealing place for me to want to live. Yes there are lots of different kinds of people in Brooklyn, but so many of the new young people moving to the borough like to bike and like the bike lanes. I wonder how much of Markowitz’s vendetta against bicycle infrastructure is an old guard vs. new guard kind of thing – like get these kids out of our borough! Except, Marty, those bike riders are not hurting your borough – they pay taxes, they keep property prices boosted, they help to create part of that Brooklyn mystique…
    I am young, I just recently had a baby with my wife, and I would love to move to Brooklyn, partially because it is beautiful and partially because of its nice and growing bike lane network. I wonder if Marty doesn’t want me to move there because I’m not a car driver?

  • > When Will Marty Admit He Was Wrong?

    He won’t ever admit that, guaranteed. Perhaps it’s high time to get rid of one of our most-hated local politicians by unseating him in at the next electoral opportunity? I mean, the only time this guy is in the news is to grand-stand and glad-hand. As far as I can tell he’s nothing more than an advocate against change and reform in Brooklyn. Kicking his ass out would send a pretty strong message.

  • Actor Greta Gerwig, now on the silver screen in that other movie with Natalie Portman, loves to walk in the city and also rides Katy Perry’s bike, which she faithfully lugs up three flights of stairs. I read it in Sunday’s Daily News interview with her.

    If all the movie stars are living without cars, can the Post columnists be far behind?

  • Okay, will SOMEONE run against Markowitz this year? I don’t live in Brooklyn so I can’t, but I bet that if Aaron Naparstek or Larry Littlefield posted a comment here saying, “I’ll be in Grand Army Plaza tomorrow from 5-9PM,” he could get enough signatures in an hour to get on the ballot. Markowitz is really being nasty and divisive here, which is not the job of a borough president.

  • Charlie

    I can’t believe that the Brooklyn Borough President has nothing better to do that to fight a bike lane! This is the most pressing issue for him?

  • Charlie,

    Yes.

  • molly

    Markowtitz’s pigheadedness on the “issue” of the PPW lane proves he doesn’t care about the majority of Brooklynites. This is a vendetta against a commissioner who is leaving a visible mark on the city that he, for whatever reason, doesn’t personally agree with. He’s a disgrace.

  • J.J. Hunsecker

    Looking at Marty and his triple chin on Channel 2, I’m guessing he was no athlete and must have been teased mercilessly when he was a kid (I know I was). Marty’s main job was to get the A-OK for Atlantic Yards.

    Now he’s term-limited and has nothing to do, so he’s gone completely over the top, using his tin-pot little office as bully pulpit, complete with media access via Marcia Kramer as his willing supplicant to keep feeding the hate.

    The real question is this: outside of us pro-bike lane and the real haters, does anyone really care?

  • dporpentine

    There is one cool thing about Markowitz wanting to waste money on gathering another round of PPW data: the time machine he’ll have to build to conduct the 2009 counts.

  • Here’s what Marty wrote me last August, in his e-mail reply to my request that he comment on the Park Slope Neighbors study showing a huge drop in speeding on PPW after the bike lane was put in:

    They are hardly a impartial group on this issue who have previously indicated their full support of these bike lanes on PPW……the real review must be done by an independent agency using agreed upon factors to properly respond to your question…….obviously however, if you reduce traffic lanes from 3 to 2 and at times further reduced to one,alleged speeding would be impacted but congestion, safety and pollution would be increased……thank you….marty

    [Note the unintended “safety … would be increased”!] Marty was building in his escape hatch even then, with his “independent agency” qualifier, as in: NYCDOT isn’t, so their review can’t be real

  • Marcia Kramer’s Eyebrow

    Nothing in Marty’s world counts unless it is what Marty wants data to look like. I am so glad that many in the borough are starting to wake up to realize he is beyond a harmless buffoon – he’s a vindictive dinosaur: petty, child-like, and a danger to the safety of children and seniors with views like this.

  • Marcia Kramer’s Eyebrow

    And I so wish Marty would have turned up to the packed CB6 meeting where about 70 (easily) were supporters of the PPW bike lane. But of course if Marty would have shown up that would have meant he was responsible and wanted to make himself available to talk with ALL who had views on the PPW results.

  • J

    Conspiracy Theories? Really? He’s sounding delusional. It’s any incredible jump to say that one piece of (mis)information from a HIGHLY biased group is grounds to discredit an entire year-long study.

    I really hope he kills his political career over a bike lane. He sounds about as crazy as he really is. Hopefully the voters will recognize that next election.

  • chuck

    To the people who long for someone to run against Marty in the next election: don’t worry.

    Term limits kick back in again, this time for real, since the city voted to keep them at 2 terms. Marty Markowitz will not be Brooklyn Borough President after 2013.

    God, that seems like forever.

  • “Facts are meaningless – you could use facts to prove anything that’s even remotely true!”

    –Homer Simpson/Marty Markowitz

  • Marcia Kramer’s Eyebrow

    Thankfully any plans Marty has running for Mayor in 2013 are now over. Next up for Marty’s paranoia: U.F.O.’s abducting people in Bensonhurst.

  • Will he say the UFO creatures wanted Brooklyn’s secret egg cream recipe?

  • Lois Carsbad

    Marty is right. There’s no way we can trust the DOT to do an unbiased, impartial study of the bike lane on my street. That’s why we want the NYPD to conduct an unbiased study of their own, right after they’ve finished their bike crackdown.

  • I can’t believe someone used the words “NYPD” “impartial analysis” in the same sentence regarding an evaluation of bike infrastructure!

    That is like saying “lets have Pat Robertson do an impartial analysis of legislation allowing same-sex marriage”.

  • Bolwerk

    @Charlie: come to think of it, I’m not sure what borough presidents are even supposed to do.

    Peyser broke the story: a protected Amerikan class is being persecuted! “The Paper of Record can’t deny its anti-conservative hate speech.”

  • J:Lai

    Borough presidents have almost no actual power. It is primarily a “soft” office. The job is to be a booster for the borough (or special interests therein) and use access to media and politicians to push for pet projects. Gladhanding and blowharding pretty much sums it up.

    Regarding Ben from Harlem’s comment above, I think there is a perception that most bicycle riders in represent “new arrivals” and so there is a “hipster vs real working people” trope that places like the NY Post love to use. However, there are all types of people who use bicycles to get around. The failure of people like Markowitz to acknowledge this reality only indicates that he and his friends don’t use bicycles.

  • manchego

    Sorry Molly,
    but the majority of Brooklynites don’t use the bike lanes. Not the other way around. But of course that doesn’t matter. this being the advocacy website Steetsblog. Where no contrary point or opinion matters.

  • Duh-Manchego

    Manchego,

    So does it matter that majority of Brooklynites (and NYC in general) do not own automobiles?

    NYC is the only major city where fewer than half the households do not own a car. Which means the number of adults to cars is actually much less than 50%.

    Look it up, stats don’t lie.

  • You know, back when he was kind of a Brooklyn booster/buffoon, he was innocuous.

    Now he has really risen to the level of ‘schmuck’.

    I contacted his office after I read about Emilie Gossiaux, the cyclist struck by an unlicensed truck driver, and who is now blind because of it. This was right after Markowitz had delivered his anti-bike-lane serenade. His response is on my blog:

    http://inklake.typepad.com/ink_lake/2010/12/fugeddaboutit.html

  • Marty Barfowitz

    Oh, wow. Everyone should look at Peter Crow’s blog post. Wow.

    http://inklake.typepad.com/ink_lake/2010/12/fugeddaboutit.html

    Markowitz has just really gone over the edge.

  • manchego

    sure, your stats don’t lie. But Molly’s statement is still false.

  • Bolwerk

    @manchego: I don’t know about proving anything, but considering that Markowitz is willing to make PPW less safe/convenient for a majority of its users (transit users, bikers, AND pedestrians) does seem to hint at a general contempt for the people he is supposed to serve.

  • Bill from Brooklyn

    @Blowerk, please also add drivers to your list of users for whom PPW is safer and from my perspective as a driver as convenient. And Manchego, Marty’s failure regarding PPW is a failure directed at the huge majority of Brooklyn residents, regardless of whether they bike or not. The charm of the PPW reconfiguration is that it works on so many levels and produced minimal real as opposed to perceived disruption.

  • tom

    MARTY FOR MAYOR
    MARTY FOR MAYOR
    MARTY FOR MAYOR

    There, I got your attention. Yes, he’s term-limited out as BP; but, if you keep his name in the news, he can run for the BIG SPOT. It’s all up to you.

  • @manchego,

    Molly didn’t say that the majority of Brooklynites use bike lanes. She said Marty “doesn’t care about the majority of Brooklynites.” And given that the majority of Brooklynites are car-free, and the majority of Brooklynites are pedestrians, and the redesign of Prospect Park West has made the street safer for all users, her statement, on the evidence, would appear to be true.

  • molly

    Eric, exactly, thank you. I’d be hard-pressed to think of a scenario where the ability to speed down a residential street benefits anyone really.