Today’s Headlines

  • Paul White: DAs Can Use Laws on the Books to Prosecute Driver Recklessness (News)
  • Straphangers: Congestion Is Making Bus Service a Lot Worse (NewsPost, AMNY)
  • With No Help From Albany, Council Transpo Committee Votes to Double Hit-and-Run Fines (Gothamist)
  • Motorist Kills Thomas Violante, 72, on Hylan Boulevard; SI Electeds Still MIA (Advance 1, 2)
  • Levine Eyes Daytime Truck Ban, Congestion Charge for CBD and Downtown Brooklyn (News)
  • Cuomo Gets Involved in Farley Post Office Redevelopment (NYT)
  • Richard Brown Files No Charges Against Driver for the Act of Critically Injuring Urabia Nelson
  • TLC Won’t Enforce Its Own Rule Requiring Cabs to Be Crash-Tested (News)
  • Driver Killed in Collision on Van Wyck (News); Off-Duty Cop Exploits Hit-and-Run Loophole (News)
  • When the Weapon Doesn’t Have Wheels, Criminality Is Suspected (NYT)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • Jeff

    Targeting delivery trucks strikes me as a bit obnoxious. Trucks actually, you know, *do* something. They deliver goods and provide services that the typical New Yorker can and does avail themselves of. They’re basically the opposite of the self-entitled little brats who think they’re too important to take mass transit or ride a bike that we should be targeting as a first step in reducing congestion.

  • Ari_F_S

    Trucks arrive during the day because that’s when the receivers/customers want them to.

    I’m all for time-of-day-type congestion charges, but those should apply to all vehicles. If those fees were instituted, truckers would pass the costs onto receivers and some receivers would elect to switch to off-hours deliveries.

  • Joe R.

    I agree. A better strategy is to just get all these private automobiles which clog the roads, double-park, and otherwise make things miserably slow for delivery trucks off the roads. In other words, levy a steep congestion charge to come into NYC proper during peak hours, along with more charges to go to the more congested parts of NYC. I’m thinking along the lines of maybe a $10 charge to enter city limits, then something like another $25 to enter Manhattan. That should keep the hordes in private automobiles away.

  • Joe R.

    They might pass on the fees but when you do the math the amount would be inconsequential. A $25 fee spread over at least a few tons of cargo comes to a few tenths of a cent per pound at most. So that box of cat litter will cost a nickel more, if that. NYC would need to get this message out publicly so you won’t have trucking companies trying to gouge people because of congestion charges. Same thing with grocery stores raising the price of a gallon of milk by 50 cents claiming it’s because of congestion charges. I know they’ll want to try it but the city can nip this nonsense in the bug with an information campaign.

  • Albert

    First we banish pedestrians, cyclists and horses from city streets to give free reign to motor vehicles, now we’re going to banish commercial vehicles from business hours? — and again, just so owners of private cars won’t have to pony up. Seems like motorists that actually contribute something to the city’s economy should get preference over those who don’t.

    Commercial vehicles should get a discount during business hours. Non-business vehicles should get a surcharge. It’s already hard enough to sleep at night because of delivery truck back-up beepers.

    Anthony Weiner floated this ridiculous plan as *his* solution to congestion pricing, I mean, to traffic congestion.

  • WalkingNPR

    Funny how when the question is putting in a complete street everyone’s VERY concerned how businesses will get their deliveries. But when it’s those same “businesses who have to get things delivered, people who actually have to drive in the city…how are you going to get things when you force everyone to do deliveries by bike, huh?!?” vs. private vehicles, screw the businesses!!!

  • Mike

    As somebody who was nearly splatted while bike-commuting this morning by one delivery truck pulling around a second double-parked delivery truck, I have to say that Levine may not be entirely crazy.

  • sbauman

    There’s a fairly good predictor of slow bus routes. It’s the number of passengers per route mile. In 3 of the 5 boroughs the route with the greatest number of passengers per route mile turned out to be the slowest route. The only exception was Manhattan. The M66’s 6033 pass/mi was exceeded by M14 – 8973, M42 – 6094, M79 – 6919, M86 – 9180 and M96 – 7311. Brooklyn was the other exception. The B35’s passenger/mile figure came in second to the B46: 4793 vs. 5773.

    The figures for the other winners (or losers depending on one’s perspective) were: Bx1/2 – 4870; Q58 – 3643 and S48/98 – 1128.

    Passengers per mile is a better predictor than passengers per bus stop, which I also calculated a while back.

  • John D

    RE: Taxi crash tests — make sure that any minor collision is instant death for the vehicle operator — see if dangerous driving practices clear up

    (with thanks to “The Armchair Economist”)

  • bolwerk

    Almost meaningless anyway. In reality, reducing congestion saves trucks fuel and makes every labor-hour more productive. That overwhelms the cost of a congestion fee.

  • AMH

    Receivers would only switch to off-hours if the fee were higher than the cost of paying someone to receive deliveries at night.

  • Joe R.

    You’re 100% right but that won’t stop the profiteers from trying to use a congestion fee as an excuse to raise prices. I remember the same nonsense when fuel prices were higher. Stores were raising prices by ridiculous amounts claiming their costs were higher. Again, when you did the math it just didn’t pan out. And to date I haven’t noted a proportional drop now that fuel prices are lower. They’re keeping the higher prices in effect, and will likely raise them again substantially next time fuel prices rise.

  • Alexander Vucelic

    but What about my FREE Parking ? LOL ( citibike station this morning at 72nd and Columbus )

  • AMH

    “The developers, selected for the project known as Moynihan Station in 2005, tried twice to move Madison Square Garden into the James A. Farley Post Office.”

    This statement from the NYT article confused me. I thought the plan was to use the Post Office building for station and retail space. How would you put MSG in there?

  • AMH

    “The government is now prosecuting people who were involved in accidents,” Mr. Gershfeld said in a telephone interview. “The facts do not support any criminal acts.”

    “It was an unfortunate incident, but I think the trial will bear out that nothing he did was criminal,” Mr. Savatta said.

    This is what people say after a car-ped crash. (Also, it sounds like the suspect can afford multiple lawyers.) Guns =/= cars, but they are both deadly and treated far too casually in this country.

  • bolwerk

    At least then there was a net increase in delivery cost. What it probably taught them is they can raise prices to that level and still sell just as much. People need food, afterall.

    The question then is, can they do it again?

  • Jeff

    It’s a really big building.

  • I agree that commercial traffic is a more legitimate use of montor vehicles than individual personal transportation is. Indeed, if a vehicle is not a commercial vehicle, an emergency or official vehicle, or a bus, then it is part of the problem. But this is not inconsistent with the establishment of rules that encorage or require deliveries to take place at night.

    Delivery drivers frequently park in bike lanes. During the overnight hours they could more easily park their trucks outside bike lanes, in a regular traffic lane. Of course, this is what they should be doing anyway; but many are reluctant to do it during heavy traffic periods.

    (Side note: whenever I encounter a truck that is parked next to a bike lane and not in it, I always make it a point to thank the driver for his/her consideration. Please do this.)

  • Brian Howald

    I second thanking drivers who stop in the moving lane instead of the bike lane.

  • Joe R.

    I make a point a thanking anyone who acknowledges my existence as a cyclist, whether it’s a truck driver who parks outside the bike lane, or a motorist who sees me and waves me through a stop sign at intersections with 4-way stops, or a driver making a right turn who lets me pass before turning. I may not be quite the “cycling ambassador” you are in terms of my behavior, but I feel we need to acknowledge any motorists who give us respect.

  • Alicia

    Or we could encourage new development to put in loading docks and start moving away from trucks parking on the streets at all.

  • Yes, that is certainly a more fundamental solution.

  • Right. I believe in being very vocal, both to criticise those who endanger us or who work against bicyclists’ interests, and also to thank those who help us out by behaving properly.

  • bolwerk

    If only this civil libertarianism applied where it could save money and lives, like in the drug war or for simpler stuff like walking while black.