Today’s Headlines

  • Family of Victoria Nicodemus: Brooklyn DA Ken Thompson Has Failed Us (Gothamist)
  • Some For-Hire Drivers Are Ditching Uber for Yellow Cabs (Crain’s)
  • Risky, Chaotic NYPD Traffic Chase Caught on Video (Post)
  • Driver Hit and Killed Man on Harlem River Drive Sunday Night (News)
  • Next Up for City Hall’s Neighborhood Rezonings: Bay Street in Staten Island (Politico)
  • NYC’s Newest Plaza Debuted in Kensington This Weekend (DP Corner)
  • Curmudgeonly Gersh Kuntzman Dreads Subway Wi-Fi (News)
  • You May Not Have Noticed, But Penn Station Pipes in Classical Music to Soothe Your Nerves (NYT)
  • 85-Year-Old Charlie Rangel Still Has a Driver’s License (Post)
  • Entitled Motorist Syndrome Claims a Victim (Post)
  • Muhammad Ali’s Boxing Career Got Started When Someone Stole His Schwinn (SI)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • Mike

    I’m with Gersh. There’s nothing quite like being jarred out of that fugue quasi-napping state when the B comes above ground for the bridge and everybody pulls out their phones. FaceTime calls seem to have started to become a bit normal, which is worse. Makes me want to bring a cellular signal blocker on the train.

  • com63

    Re: Police chase. This is the kind of thing that dashcams capture that would otherwise go unreported. The city should use Vision Zero funds to put dashcams in every TLC regulated vehicle. The benefit to public safety would be immense. It would generate tons of footage for local news to bring attention to the problem of reckless drivers.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Remember, the police are the other rich people.

    They just don’t admit they are rich, because the riches are in a well disguised form.

    As for the perpetrator, she seems like the type to contemptuously run over some poor serf some day.

  • timmy

    Yes. But it doesn’t even need to be dashcams. I could stand at 6th Avenue and 54th Street and videotape cars headed north on 6th running red lights to make a right turn (bullying pedestrians out of the way) every couple minutes during every weekday rush hour. It’s all around us.

  • Nobody tell Gersh that nearly half the subway system already has full cell service. He should take the 7 or perhaps the N a few stops out of Manhattan now and then.

  • Bobberooni

    Steve Cuozzo gets it wrong in the article about the new passageway. I used to do that transfer, and I can assure you the passageway will be a big improvement. Not just for the hordes of pedestrians who formerly clogged the street-level infrastructure, but also for the all-important drivers who now don’t have to wait for those hordes crossing the street.

    The problem isn’t the tunnel, it’s that $6b was spent on not one, but two over-grandiose train stations. Keep the tunnel, but we can do without the stegosaur and oculous.

  • Joe R.

    Same here. The MTA needs to have “silent cars” much like the commuter railroads do. I don’t need to hear jerks talking about last nights BJ, or a senior citizen discussing their bowel movements with a doctor. Easy enough to do this, too, considering the MTA controls the signals. Just don’t have cell phone transceivers in the quiet cars.

  • Larry Littlefield

    I thought like Gersh originally.

    But I now see that phones are not just for, or even mostly for, phoning anymore. There is texting and using the internet. That’s what the next generation does.

    Perhaps on-car internet could be combined with announcements requesting that riders limit their phone use to texting and internet while on the train.

  • Joe R.

    I still have an issue with that because being on the things will cause people to be less aware of their surroundings. They’ll get in the way of people entering or exiting trains. The system is already being slowed down because some number of people on it act like they’re on a pleasure cruise. More people on cell phones just add to it. I’ve often wondered exactly what is so important that it can’t wait 30 or 45 minutes? I think we as a society need to acknowledge people are overly addicted to these things. I can see some valid uses here but do people really need to check their Facebook likes every 30 seconds (one of my brother’s friends entire family does that, and posts pictures of half their meals on Facebook).

  • Larry Littlefield

    Right. I had to look to find the article, not linked above.

    “But nearly all the commuters at Thursday’s evening rush hour were headed either to PATH or to the subways from the street — not from one transit system to the other.”

    After 9/11, I had written in and said that Downtown’s key advantage was its network of no-traffic and low-traffic spaces, and the right way to revive the area was to expand and link them. I also argued that these expansions should be OUTSIDE fare control, so they could be used for trips other than transit trips to and from work. For travel to lunch or meetings, for example.

    This is one part of the link from the Hudson nearly to the East River, linking up with Nassau Street.

    Is a passageway under West Street to Battery Park City open?

  • Larry Littlefield

    People used to read on the train. Later, they listened to music with headphones.

    It’s the same thing, unless they are speaking.

    I don’t mind standing there and staring into space for 90 minutes per day, but then again I only have to do it once or twice a week since I bike the other days. That’s a lot of wasted time.

  • Joe R.

    I used to read and study on the train all the time. I think a key difference between looking at pieces of paper, versus a cell phone, is the former doesn’t regularly update. Nor does it require as much mental concentration to use. I was pretty aware of my surroundings when I used to read. Getting the attention of some people on cell phones is like trying to disconnect the Borg from their hive mind.

    Lots of people used to catch up on their sleep commuting, assuming they got a seat. That’s a good use of the time considering how sleep deprived we are as a nation.

  • Maybe you’re just not reading the right things.

  • Its not that it can’t wait, but one of the big advantages of public transit is that you aren’t stuck focusing on driving for an hour. Being able to read a book, have a text conversation, reply to emails, whatever is a big advantage.

  • AnoNYC

    Might as well have the NYPD continue to roll out their existing camera program.

  • AnoNYC

    People have been using cellular devices on the elevated trains forever. You hardly notice it unless someone is being really obnoxious, but the same could happen face to face in the car.

  • AMH

    Yes, there is a passageway from the WTC PATH station to Brookfield Place.

  • BBnet3000

    My favorite “WE CAN’T DO THIS HERE, NEW YORK ISN’T LIKE OTHER PLACES” comments are ones where a thing is already happening in New York but the person speaking is so provincial they don’t know about it.

  • kevd

    On amtrak and metro north loud phone talking isn’t that big a problem anymore.
    it won’t be on the subways either. Complaining about what people do on their smart phones is like complaining about that darn rock music in the 50s. Its mostly just crotchety, old-man, get off my lawn-ism.
    A crotched kinda old-man

  • Joe R.

    Perhaps it is, perhaps it isn’t. The fact quiet cars exist on a lot of commuter lines is testament to the fact enough people found cellphones annoying to request such cars. The best solution is to do the same on the subway. Maybe make alternate cars quiet.

    In the end it’s often using something to excess which gets it regulated or banned. Look at telemarketing. Putting aside for a moment that the business model behind telemarketing is horrible (i.e. calling people who don’t want to be called to sell them things they don’t want to buy), the main reason it ended up being regulated was the sheer volume of calls most people ended up receiving. If instead the average person only received a few such calls per year, I don’t think there would now be any regulation (or nowadays technological means to filter and block such calls, which is what I do).

    It’s not much different with cell phones. If the people using them were mostly having essential business conversations the volume of calls in public places would be considerably lower. It wouldn’t be something which all that many people found annoying. While we’re at it, since this is Streetsblog, we could say the same about automobiles. It’s their sheer numbers which make life unpleasant for city residents. If the only people who drove in NYC were those providing essential services which couldn’t be provided any other way. a site like Streetsblog might not even exist.