Skip to Content
Streetsblog New York City home
Streetsblog New York City home
Log In
Times Square

Times Square Flashback: Revisit the Bad Old Days With Streetfilms

New Yorkers might have forgotten just how bad the bad old days were in Times Square. Gridlock blocked crosswalks. Pedestrians were relegated to crush levels on the sidewalks. It wasn't a pleasant place to be.

Relive the nightmare with this Streetfilm from 2006, in which Streetsblog publisher Mark Gorton interviews Danish architect and public space expert Jan Gehl about the problems with Times Square.

“When we talk about the conditions for pedestrians here, it’s really lousy," Gehl said.

“Thousands of people are literally pushed into the street because it’s so congested on the sidewalk," Gorton added. "It’s beyond unpleasant. It’s unsafe and it drives people away from this neighborhood.”

That Police Commissioner Bill Bratton wants to return to the bad old days -- and Mayor Bill de Blasio is considering it -- is a clear signal that they don't believe New York's streets are for people.

Stay in touch

Sign up for our free newsletter

More from Streetsblog New York City

Thursday’s Headlines: ‘We’ll See You in Court, Gov.’ Edition

Today's the day that City Comptroller Brad Lander and his team of legal eagles will start the fight to save congestion pricing!

July 25, 2024

Hochul Must Put Up or Shut Up on Congestion Pricing, New Senate Transportation Chair Says

Gov. Hochul must produce a "100-day plan" to replace the $16.5 billion MTA funding shortfall created by her decision to cancel congestion pricing.

July 24, 2024

DOT Begins Safety Upgrades for Atlantic Av. But Locals Want More

Some changes are coming for Atlantic, but they're not enough, say street safety advocates.

July 24, 2024

MTA Contractor Scrambles to Refund Fake Charges After OMNY ‘Upgrade’ Goes Awry

Cubic is working to issue refunds to riders improperly charged thanks to the glitch, a spokesman said.

July 24, 2024

Podcast: GOP’s ‘Project 2025’ is ‘Based on a Lot of Ignorance’

What does Transportation for America's Beth Osborne think of the transportation portion of the Heritage Foundation's playbook for a Trump presidency?

July 24, 2024
See all posts