Today’s Headlines

  • Judge Dismisses Crackpot Lawsuit to Rip Out NYC Bike Lanes (News, Post)
  • Brooklyn DA Ken Thompson Announces Leave of Absence for Cancer Treatment (NYT)
  • On the Stand, Christie Lackey Wildstein Implicates Cuomo in Bridgegate Cover-Up (NYT, Politico)
  • Incoming RPA Chair Disagrees With RPA Criticism of Cuomo’s Penn Station Plan (Politico, DNA)
  • What’s Behind the Slowed Growth in Subway Ridership? (News)
  • TransitCenter Urges MTA to Get Serious About Bus System Overhaul
  • Heinous: Daily News Blames Anna Colon for Being Run Over by Bus Driver; More: DNA, Post
  • Motorist Strikes and Injures Child on Upper West Side; Victim Hospitalized (DNA)
  • Tri-State Not Impressed by New Jersey Gas Tax Deal
  • NYC Cyclists Have Been Dealing With Bike Lane Blockers Since the 19th Century (Atlas Obscura)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • Michel S

    Crosswalks are magical; no harm can come to you if you stay in the crosswalk! It’s amazing what cheap paint can do against a multi-ton vehicle.

  • Simon Phearson

    Is there any basis for thinking that Uber is tapping away at subway ridership?

    I definitely can say that I’ve chosen other modes over the subway. Citibike is a godsend in this regard; I’ve used it for trips parallel to the subway’s route, but where the subway runs infrequently. I’ve also used it for crosstown trips where there’s no direct subway alternative. In addition, the likelihood of delays on the subway means that the expected value of bike commuting for me is typically superior to subway commuting. But I don’t think I’ve ever opted for Uber just because the subway’s likely to be crowded or I’m likely to be delayed a few minutes. That would seem insane – why would I rather sit in traffic to go downtown during rush hour than wait for another 6 train?

    Basically the only time I’ve chosen Uber over the subway/bus is when I’ve wanted to go quite a ways, and the subway/Uber time difference was on the order of about 45 minutes or more. It’s those sort of once-every-other-month or so trips, where I’m willing to pay a premium for convenience, when Uber wins over the subway.

    I know a couple of people who Uber instead of subway, but in those cases they’re really replacing taxi or car service trips – they wouldn’t take the subway in any event. They’re a bit silly.

  • Larry Littlefield

    “MTA Chair Thomas Prendergast said Wednesday the subway saw a steep climb in riders over the past few years, but “that climb has attenuated and in some cases may have leveled off.” He said it’s too soon to call the change in ridership a trend, but he recognized Uber and other car apps can be a factor.”

    A trendy explanation, and a false one. There is apparently a limit to the extent to which younger generations of serfs can be exploited by New York’s political/union class, executive/financial class and real estate industry, in high taxes, bad services, low pay and high rents, before fewer of them come and more of them leave.

    They aren’t shifting to other transport modes. They are leaving NYC and metro NY altogether.

  • Mike

    I figure there are all sorts of factors, and it’s not like subway ridership is plummeting. Perhaps the number of people moving to the city has slowed down. Perhaps there are more cyclists. Perhaps more people are working from home, or the number of jobs that people commute to has leveled off. It could be any or all of those things, along with plenty of other factors.

  • Simon Phearson

    That would be my guess, as well. I mention Uber specifically just because it seems to be centrally figured in the article cited.

  • Larry Littlefield

    So in addition to the $140,000 for the Prospect Park West lawsuit, how much did this lawsuit cost taxpayers?

    You can call the phrase Generation Greed divisive. But until those born between 1930 and 1957 are forced to confront the effect of their collective choices on those coming after, the entitlement and damage will continue to increase.

  • Pat

    “Colon’s (body) wasn’t in the crosswalk (after being dragged by the bus), officials said”

  • com63

    I know people who use Uberpool/Lfytline/Via to replace a subway commute even thought it is not much faster (and sometimes slower). Some people just hate the subway.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Almost sounds like China, where if you are going to hit someone try to kill them because it is cheaper to pay for their funeral than for a lifetime of care.

    Here if you are going to hit someone, make sure you hit them hard enough to knock them out of the crosswalk.

  • Pat

    Just look at the Daily News photo and compare it against the witness statement who said it “dragged her body for a few feet.”

    If she was out of the crosswalk, it wasn’t by much and there was zero excuse for not seeing her.

  • bolwerk

    Re subway ridership, there is another explanation, and it actually segues with yours somewhat: where the hell are we going to put more riders?

  • WalkingNPR

    Well, I know the plural of “anecdote” isn’t “data,” but Millennial here, and one who’s actively trying to GTFO the city (and the NYC metro area–no desire to move to the ‘burbs) because of many of the reasons you’ve written about here and in your post. Paying an insane amount of my income for rent (and forget being able to own for at least another 10-15 years if that) for the privilege of dealing with the overcrowded, overburdened subway, garbage on the streets, potentially having to pay for private schools down the road–it’s just not sustainable. NYC is coasting on that whole “world-class city” reputation, but it needs to look around: others are catching up and surpassing it.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Unfortunately, as in the case of invest options at this point its a lot easier to make a case for getting out than for getting into something or somewhere else at present. But the trend is people moving to places with lower costs of living.

    New York, meanwhile, is of, by and for the seniors of Generation Greed. The schools? Spending is through the roof, but mostly for the early retired. Taxes? Zero state and local income taxes on public employee pension income in New York. Young working people are basically thought of as cash cows by those controlling everything here. You try to adjust by biking and they want to run you down.

    Labor force growth is slowing or reversing in expensive places, even long time boomtowns such as New York, San Francisco, Boston.

  • Larry Littlefield

    They were taking taxis or buses before if they hate the subway that much.

  • com63

    It was a pricing thing. The one person I’ve discussed this extensively with was taking the subway before. Some of those ride share services are offered at a $5 price point which is only slightly more than a subway fare and they can also be paid for with pre-tax transit money which makes it even more competitive. Equivalent taxi fares were north of $15 which is not competitive with subway on a daily basis.

  • Crazytrainmatt

    I myself have always thought “The Greediest Generation” sounded better

  • Larry Littlefield

    That may be an overstatement. I wouldn’t say the desire for tax cuts, more government spending and excess consumption on the credit card exceeds the generations that owned slaves, wiped out Indians and the North American wilderness.

  • That little phrase of yours is wrong because it belittles people who did a great thing in securing for themselves through collective bargaining good salaries and pensions. That generation was responsible for the widest distribution of society’s wealth in the country’s history. They set a wonderful example that the generations who came later failed to follow, for which all blame goes to those subsequent generations.

    We workers continue to suffer on account of our own collective lack of wisdom and of class consciousness. We’ve allowed our unions to be destroyed; we’ve allowed our working conditions to worsen and our compensation to plummet. The people who had secure jobs and who are now collecting good pensions have absolutely nothing to be sorry about. They did what they had to do; and we messed it up. They are entitled to look at the workers who followed them and who failed to defend the gains that they had won and to regard us as fools.

  • Joe R.

    Read up a bit on history. The generation you admire took so much that it caused many businesses to implode. There’s a fundamental difference between unions from about 1900 through maybe 1960 or so versus after. The early unions fought for fair pay, safe working conditions, a more reasonable number of working hours, etc. Later on unions lost support on account of their excesses. Demanding more pay and benefits doesn’t work when the revenues of a business are insufficient to support it. Ignoring that little fact caused many businesses to go under. These workers might have been better served with somewhat lower pay and benefits if it meant not losing their jobs.

    Public employees are still bound by similar constraints. Despite the pleas of unions to “raise taxes” to pay for more benefits, there are hard limits on how much taxes can be raised before the populace rebels. Excessive taxation is one reason Trump has so much support. Sooner or later the well will dry up. In fact, it already has. Younger workers in the same position typically get lower pay and benefits under many union contracts precisely because what the older generation took was unsustainable in the long haul.

    The analogy is much the same for the planet. The unlimited growth which Wall Street loves is ultimately facing a hard resource limit. The lavish pay and benefits taken by Larry’s proverbial Generation Greed can’t be sustained without indefinite growth in both population and worker output. In short, they were justified by a flawed model. Population growth slowed (Japan is facing this very crisis as we speak). Resource limits and planetary destruction are putting a hard cap on production. Had the prior generation not taken more than their fair share, the crisis we’re going to face might not be so acute.

  • Larry Littlefield

    One or more years in retirement for each year worked was not achievable at a standard of living Generation Greed was willing to accept. It could only be obtained at someone else’s expense. The same with the levels of executive pay we have seen. One might say it’s the political party of the lazy vs. the political party of the greedy.

    “The people who had secure jobs and who are now collecting good pensions have absolutely nothing to be sorry about. They did what they had to do.”

    Went shopping and bought lower priced imports with their credit cards, and then negotiated two-tier union contracts with lower pay and benefits for new hires.

    Even in “socialist” France, with taxes at 50 percent of GDP, people are expected to work 40 years. They too are facing a crisis, but they are all in it together, unlike here.

  • Elizabeth F

    Subway ridership is about 5.7 million per day; Uber/Lyft/Cabs are 600,000 per day. Uber/Lyft has added at most 200,000 to that number. Assuming all 200,000 of those Uber/Lyft converts did so instead of the subway…. we’re talking about a POSSIBLE decrease of .2 million? I don’t see the story there.

    It shouldn’t be a surprise that if the subway is overcrowded, that people will find ways to use it less — whether to go by Uber/Lyft, walking, real bike, Citibike, or not go at all. Uber/Lyft is not the driving factor here, but rather the subway itself. Experience with roads has shown that transportation demand is highly elastic; it probably is for subway travel too.

    The biggest story here come in the employment trend graphs shown. Those would be a sharp reversal of the past 20 years, indicating a new direction for this country. But it was bound to happen eventually… a nation in which the largest cities suck people and jobs from just about everywhere else is not healthy or sustainable.