Today’s Headlines

  • People Can’t Imagine Times Square Without the Plazas (NYT, Gothamist)
  • Steve Cuozzo Has a Conspiracy Theory About the Daily News Campaign Against Desnudas (Post)
  • Bratton Talks Times Square on the Radio Without Mentioning Ripping Up Plazas (News)
  • American Cities Have Trouble Managing Their Pedestrian Streets (NYT)
  • Denis Hamill: “Make Times Square Like New York” By Letting It Get Overrun By Traffic (News)
  • Truck Driver Critically Injures Delivery Cyclist in Bay Ridge (News)
  • Jenna Daniels’ Family Says Tinted Windows Contributed to Her Death on Staten Island Last Fall (Advance)
  • Mort Zuckerman’s Boston Properties Offers Free Bike Valet at Midtown Buildings (WSJ)
  • Citi Bike Installed Six New Stations in Bed-Stuy Friday (DNA)
  • Should Red Hook Ferry Be a Long Walk From Most Homes or Next to a Giant Parking Lot? (Bklyn Paper)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • From Hamill’s article: “Start backpedaling on all these precious bicycle lanes that have been shoved down the gagging throat of the city by your predecessor who appealed to the urban kale farmer vote and the bike Nazis who speed through our city without license plates or responsibility, fueled by a sense of arrogant entitlement, rarely obeying traffic signs, red lights or speed limits.”

    holy hyperbole Batman

  • BBnet3000

    How much of an embarrassment must Denis Hamill be to his brother Pete by constantly peddling lowest common denominator tabloid nonsense?

  • Jesse

    It’s a masterpiece. 0 to Godwin in 5 sentences.

  • vnm

    Re the NY Times piece under the headline, “American Cities Have Trouble Managing Their Pedestrian Streets”: It is an interesting look back at the history of fully pedestrianized streets that were put in in the 1960s and 70s to combat businesses decamping to greenfield malls, and (some of them) removed in the 1980s. They write, that, a generation ago: “cities came to the conclusion that a major commercial thoroughfare works best as a fully functioning street.” But the comparison to Times Square is not such a good one. It hasn’t been pedestrianized. Unlike the cities in the historical examples, it still has tons of cars!

  • The scary thing is that a whole lot of people agree with this. We should not live in a fantasy world in which we suppose that this element in society is defeated or extinct. It is very much with us, just awaiting the savvy demagogue/politician who can tap into it.

    De Blasio was hostile to bike lanes from the beginning (really from before the beginning — dating from when he was Public Advocate); and he has clearly demonstrated his lack of committment to pedestrian plazas. When the next election rolls around, and he is challenged by opponents of pedestrian plazas and bike lanes, expect this guy to cave rapidly on all of this in an attempt to neutralise his challengers.

    No one can seriously doubt that the Golden Age of bicycling and livable streets in New York is coming to an end. We should enjoy the infrastructure that we have now, because we will witness the eventual rollback of all the Bloomberg-era advances. The only question is how rapidly this decline will occur.

  • com63

    You missed this NYDN rant on Saturday:

    http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/stasi-blame-bloomberg-happened-times-square-article-1.2334389

    Cuzzo is probably right to some extent that Boston properties is worried about protecting their rent. Whether tenants actually care about stuff like this is a different question. Most just want to be near Penn Station, Grand Central and the Port Authority. Where is the best place for that? Times Square!

  • Matthias

    True, and most plazas in the city are not entire streets, but short blocks that mainly serve to simplify traffic flow, as with the Broadway plazas. There is no lack of activity, which seems to have been the problem in other cities.

  • Miles Bader

    No doubt “lack of activity” is a (serious) issue for retailers, but the idea that car access is necessary for a location to have “activity” is obviously idiotic.

    Maybe in a smallish town surrounded by American car suburbs, car access is something you have to think about, but in a large city with other transportation networks, where the majority of travel is not by car, pandering to cars is a not only unnecessary, it’s a negative.

    When most of your customers arrive by subway, don’t screw up their experience with traffic.

  • rao

    The people that feel this way are dying off and getting displaced. They’re living fossils and they know it, which is why they rage at cyclists. But ripping out bike lanes and ped plazas will never bring their Old New York back and though they will enjoy some victories they’ll be less of a factor as time goes on.

  • vnm

    Well put. That is exactly right.