City Council Candidates on the Issues: Daniel Peterson, District 22

We continue our series on City Council candidates with a Q&A with former New York Young Republican Club President Daniel Peterson, who’s running to represent District 22, covering Astoria, Ditmars-Steinway, and northern Jackson Heights. Yesterday we ran a Q&A with Democratic District Leader Costa Constantinides. There are two other candidates in this district. Antonio Meloni responded to Streetsblog’s questionnaire but did not provide answers for publication. Danielle De Stefano did not respond.

City Council District 22 candidate Daniel Peterson. Photo: ## Peterson/Facebook##

Streetsblog: A proposal for a pedestrian plaza at 30th Avenue, 33rd Street and Newtown Avenue was defeated by opposition from Community Board 1 and Council Member Vallone. Do you think public plazas, like the ones installed in other neighborhoods throughout the city, provide a benefit to the community?

Daniel Peterson: I welcome proposals for additional public space in Astoria and throughout New York City. As councilman, I will listen to new proposals for areas of Astoria that can potentially be transformed into new public space. I will also make sure all the pros and cons are thoroughly vetted. The democratic process may not grant every proposal, but we should certainly look for alternative options that can improve our public space.

SB: Astoria Boulevard is slated to receive Select Bus Service improvements to speed bus travel. Could other parts of the neighborhood benefit from things like dedicated bus lanes?

DP: Other parts of Astoria would most certainly benefit from dedicated bus lanes. If 21st Street is an option, I would definitely look at such a proposal. The real question is: Can other parts support dedicated bus lanes? Unfortunately, Astoria’s street grid does not support many options for dedicating a section of road for a bus lane as our roads are just not wide enough. However, I am open to any improvements for our public transportation.

SB: How can the council best use its powers to reduce vehicular deaths and ensure traffic justice citywide?

DP: Public safety will be my number one issue for my campaign and as councilman. However, there is only so much the City Council can do when it comes to regulating the streets of New York. It will basically fall on the police to enforce traffic law, drivers to obey the law and the pedestrians to be aware of their surroundings when crossing the street or walking on the sidewalk. Our biggest problem today for pedestrian safety is bicycles, and particularly motorized bikes, riding the wrong way on one-way streets and the sidewalks. Most people reflexively look in the direction of traffic and do not expect something coming at them from the opposite direction. This is a serious concern of mine as I’ve been hit by careless riders and have seen some serious accidents involving reckless bicyclists. The motorized bikes are becoming more widely used by delivery persons and not one of them obey the laws for motorized vehicles. This has to stop.

SB: The MTA is a state agency, but what actions would you like to see the City Council take to fund and expand transit service?

DP: The City Council has the responsibility to make sure that any MTA expansion, contraction or alteration is properly accommodated in some way. Our job as representatives is to ensure the MTA does not drastically alter the economics of a given area and that all efforts to improve on what was there before are made possible. I do believe public-private ventures with the MTA and local businesses should be explored, so we can help alleviate costs for the MTA so that fares are not drastically increased.


City Council Candidates on the Issues: John Ciafone, District 22

We have an update to our series on City Council candidates with questionnaire responses from two additional candidates in District 22, which covers Astoria, Ditmars-Steinway, and northern Jackson Heights. In April, we ran responses from Democratic District Leader Costa Constantinides and former New York Young Republican Club President Daniel Peterson. This week, we add responses from candidates who announced […]

City Council Candidates on the Issues: Costa Constantinides, District 22

Streetsblog continues our series on City Council candidates with a look at the race for District 22 in Queens, which covers Astoria, Ditmars-Steinway, and northern Jackson Heights. The seat has been held by Peter Vallone, Jr. since 2002; he is now running for Queens Borough President. Two Democratic primary candidates — Democratic District Leader Costa Constantinides and anti-crime activist Antonio […]

City Council Primaries: Where Your Vote Counts the Most

If you’re a registered Democrat in New York City, tomorrow is one of those rare occasions: an election where your vote carries a lot of weight. This is especially true in the City Council primaries, where winning candidates typically need just a few thousand votes to represent districts of more than 150,000 people. The margins […]

Big Winners on Primary Day: de Blasio and StreetsPAC

Yesterday, New York City Democrats chose the candidate who’s campaigned as the anti-Bloomberg. But on issues of traffic safety and surface transit, Bill de Blasio, despite some wavering, has pledged to build on the current administration’s progress while tackling the unfinished business of reforming the NYPD’s approach to traffic violence. And with several City Council […]

Council Candidates at Fort Greene Forum Agree: Don’t Touch Parking

If you were hoping for inspiring leadership from the City Council on transportation issues after the next election, you may want to look somewhere other than District 35, which covers the neighborhoods just east of downtown Brooklyn. Two-thirds of households in the district are car-free, according to the 2000 Census. But while most candidates supported traffic calming […]

Highlights From TA’s District 25 Candidate Debate

Helen Sears, Stanley Kalathara, and Daniel Dromm. At the Transportation Alternatives City Council candidate debate last night, the three Democrats competing in District 25 sat down to tackle concerns about traffic, public space, and street safety. An overflow crowd of about 50 people packed the second floor office of the Queens Diversity Center to see […]