Bloomberg Announces Carpool Rule for Manhattan-Bound Drivers

After a morning and afternoon when car traffic completely clogged NYC streets and river crossings, Mayor Bloomberg announced new restrictions for drivers entering Manhattan via bridges and tunnels on Thursday and Friday. On most crossings, only cars with three or more people will be allowed to enter Manhattan.

A curb-to-curb traffic jam on Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn this afternoon. Photo: ##https://twitter.com/Naparstek/status/263636871064735744/photo/1##@Naparstek##

“Anybody that tried to drive around New York City today realized there are a lot of cars on the road,” Bloomberg said at a press conference. “The streets can only handle so much.”

From 6 a.m. to midnight tomorrow and Friday, only motor vehicles with three or more occupants are allowed to cross the Lincoln Tunnel, Henry Hudson Parkway, Triboro RFK Bridge, Queensboro Bridge, Williamsburg Bridge, Manhattan Bridge and Brooklyn Bridge. The Holland Tunnel, Hugh Carey (Brooklyn Battery) Tunnel and Queens Midtown Tunnel remain closed. Harlem River bridges managed by DOT and the George Washington Bridge were not named by the mayor for HOV-3 restrictions.

Mayor Bloomberg said that Governor Cuomo had agreed to HOV-3 restrictions on MTA bridges connecting to Manhattan.

The restriction will apply to taxis, except for the hours between 4 p.m. and midnight to facilitate shift changes. Exemptions also apply to paratransit, commercial and emergency vehicles.

Bloomberg also said that there will be “bus lanes on key corridors.” The HOV restrictions themselves should also help bus riders get where they need to go, as fewer cars jam the streets.

Earlier this afternoon, Cuomo and the MTA announced a partial restoration of subways and temporary bus service between Manhattan and Brooklyn, effective tomorrow morning.

ALSO ON STREETSBLOG

The State of the City

|
Mayor Bloomberg delivered his State of the City address at Brooklyn Tech yesterday afternoon. Anyone hoping to hear policy proposals on traffic, transportation, livable streets, climate change and long-term sustainability issues was likely disappointed. During the speech, a Streetsblog tipster happened to be biking along Jay Street in Downtown Brooklyn on his way to the […]

Parking Reform: Reduce Congestion & Raise Money Minus Albany

|
With congestion pricing stalled in Albany gridlock, what’s next? What immediate measures can New York City take to reduce traffic congestion without having to go through Albany to implement them? How else might New York City reduce traffic congestion while raising a bit of money for transit, bicycling and pedestrian improvements? Back in May, Transportation […]

Untangling Traffic: Bloomberg’s Forgotten Promise

|
On July 11, 2001, Republican mayoral candidate Michael Bloomberg issued a policy paper on traffic and transportation. The paper was called "Untangling Traffic" and it’s opening sentence exclaimed, "Traffic is a mess!" Written with the help of transportation consultant and former DOT Deputy Commissioner "Gridlock" Sam Schwartz, the paper went on to detail some of […]

Brian Ketcham Proposes a “Simpler, Cheaper Traffic Fix”

|
Distribution of vehicles entering Manhattan CBD by direction and pricing status (Zupan & Perrotta, 2003). In an op/ed piece in Monday’s Daily News, Brooklyn-based transportation consultant Brian Ketcham proposed some changes to Mayor Bloomberg’s congestion pricing plan. Ketcham, who has been pushing for some form of congestion pricing since his time working for the Lindsay […]