Today’s Headlines

  • Amtrak Chair Says Gateway Construction Will Start Next Spring (Crain’s, Curbed)
  • Reinvent Albany Wants Books Opened on Cuomo’s Bridge and Tunnel Frills (Politico)
  • Voice Parses Subway Station Ridership Gains
  • Post-Primary Punditry From the Voice, PoliticoWNYC, NY1
  • Wednesday UES Cab Fatality Another Case of Baseless NYPD Victim-Blaming (News)
  • Barry Diller’s Hudson River Greenway Pier Park Won’t Be Happening (NYT)
  • Widespread Vandalism Another Citi Bike Prediction That Didn’t Come True (Crain’s)
  • Citi Bike Marks Women’s Bike Month With Free 24-Hour Passes (Gothamist)
  • Enjoy “Authentic” Red Hook Through the Windshield of Your New Tesla! (DNA)

More headlines at Streetsblog USA

  • Daphna

    Does anyone know what happened at Manhattan CB3 Transportation Committee on Tuesday 9/12/17 regarding the pedestrian space and two-way bike lane to be created on Park Row in the downtown area?

  • Larry Littlefield

    “Take the commute down the J in Brooklyn, for example.”

    One line where there are absolutely no infrastructure capacity constraints limiting service. They’ve to got 12 tph on the J/Z.

  • sbauman

    It’s amazing how many inaccuracies are finding their way into the Village Voice article.

    The trivial:

    In the 1940s …New York’s subway also ran slightly longer distances back then, with elevated lines on 2nd, 3rd, and 6th Avenues.

    Service north of 57th St was eliminated in June 1940, only 5 months into the 1940’s decade. Service on the rest of the 2nd Ave El did not survive 1942. The 6th Ave El did not even make it into the 1940’s. Service was terminated in 1938.

    The substantive:

    Perhaps most importantly, New York’s employment tends to be more “peaky” today, with a larger share of the population working nine-to-five jobs. In the 1940s, more people worked in manufacturing shifts, which staggered transit usage throughout the day. This means the current peak in subway usage may be even more stressful on the system than the one in 1940s, despite slightly lower total ridership.

    According to the NYC Board of Transportation (the agency operating the subways in the 1940’s, here’s what a typical 1940’s weekday looked like:;orient=0;size=100;seq=65;attachment=0;orient=0;size=100;seq=66;attachment=0

    Here’s the BOT’s synopsis from the first paragraph on the second link: “It will noted in the four so-called rush-hours between 7 and 9 AM and between 5 and 7 PM, about 45% of the passengers for the day presented themselves for transportation service or an average of about 11.2% per hour. The remaining 55% of the business was distributed over 20 hours or on the average of 2.7% per hour. Thus it may be seen that the average rush-hour load is about 4 times the average non rush-hour load.”

    How does that compare to today? The answer insofar as Manhattan’s CBD is concerned can be found in the annual Hub Bound Survey: and

    A side by side comparison requires a bit work: combining inbound/outbound totals and calculating percentages. Here are the results in a copy and paste form:


    The 4 biggest rush hours are still from 7-9am and 5-7pm. However they account for only 36% of the daily use, not the 45% reported by the BOT in 1945.

    This is indeed an important difference. Both peak hour and peak period demand have been decreasing both in relative and absolute terms, since the mid 19980’s. This important sea change has been overlooked because the 24 hour totals have been increasing.

    Many other NYC transportation patterns changed in the mid 1980’s. Something fundamental changed during that decade. Just about all transportation “solutions” have ignored this change. Only the MTA appears to have noticed this change. Their response has been to operate fewer rush hour trains.

  • djx

    The big Citibike prediction that didn’t come true is the prediction of widespread carnage – death and dismemberment – especially with helmets not being required. I never really understood how helmet would prevent dismemberment but whatever.

  • sbauman

    One line where there are absolutely no infrastructure capacity constraints limiting service. They’ve to got 12 tph on the J/Z.

    To be fair to the MTA, the M train also operates at Marcy Ave. This brings service up to 18 tph. That’s still a far cry from the 27 tph back in 1949.;orient=0;size=100;seq=126;attachment=0

    The MTA has added capacity constraints that were not present in 1949.

    The MTA spent money to eliminate Canal St and Atlantic Ave as terminals.

    While intermediate station capacity is around 40 tph, overall line capacity is usually limited by terminal constraints. Short turns permit an operating agency to provide more service where it’s needed without incurring the cost of operating trains the full length of a line.

  • HamTech87

    Also a good story about the Queens Light-Rail proposal, and a simple alternative:

  • AMH

    I believe grade timers limit capacity to something like 18-20tph, at least on the bridge which is an incredibly slow crawl. Are those the capacity constraints you mention?

  • AMH

    The Third Avenue El survived until 1955.

  • Joe R.

    I’ve never really understood how helmets prevent much of anything given their design (and the fact rates of head injury while cycling are very low to start with).

    I’m glad however that every single prediction of the bike share haters has been disproven.

  • Larry Littlefield

    Were they predictions? Of just false claims put out in an attempt to stop Citibike from happening? And reported to get page views.

    I have yet to hear any mea-culpas. No read any articles directly linking those claims to their accuracy, and asking those who made the claims for comments.

  • Joe R.

    Call them scare tactics instead of predictions if you want. Either way, they didn’t come to pass.

  • sbauman

    I believe grade timers limit capacity to something like 18-20tph, at least on the bridge which is an incredibly slow crawl.

    The critical times that affect service level capacity at intermediate stations are the stopping and acceleration times at the station, as well as dwell time within the station itself. Grade timers that are between where a departing train clears the station entrance for the follower or where a train approaches a station do not effect service level capacity. The timers on the Williamsburg Bridge fall into this category. These timers only increase the number of trains required to maintain the capacity.

    Are those the capacity constraints you mention?

    No. It’s the lack of terminals. Terminals that require a train to reverse direction generally determine line capacity. The usual remedy is to have multiple terminals.

    In the old days, Broadway-Bklyn locals (from Canarsie or Atlantic Ave) terminated at Canal St, Myrtle-Chambers Expresses terminated at Chambers St and Jamaica Expresses terminated at Broad St. Each of these terminals handled substantially fewer trains than the intermediate stations.

  • Larry Littlefield

    DNA Info reports a cyclist was struck and critically injured in Brooklyn this morning.

    The driver stayed at the scene, and they have a video that appears to show that in this case, it was the cyclist’s fault.

    The crash occurred at 7 am, according to the article. In this case, the NYPD made the video available by 11.30 am.

  • Joe R.

    Saw the video. Definitely the cyclist’s fault here. He didn’t even bother to slow down or look going through the red light. Maybe he was trying to recreate a scene from “Premium Rush”, except he got his timing wrong.

    The sad part is we’ll probably see yet another NYPD crackdown on cyclists because of this.

    Funny how the NYPD rarely makes videos available this quickly (or at all) when the cyclist isn’t at fault.

  • Sabina

    No idea why it was moved.

  • kevd

    it is almost as if they have a narrative to peddle….

  • fdtutf

    …in Manhattan, and until 1973 in the Bronx.

  • AnoNYC

    So overall, how will the results of these primaries affect transportation in NYC?

  • Larry Littlefield

    They still have Chambers and Broad. Not to mention they could always increase service in Brooklyn by running a train down to 9th Avenue.

    And don’t forget the terminal space freed up by running the M up 6th Avenue.

  • Larry Littlefield

    The big news is that there are primaries.

    That means that regardless of their personal habits, you are more likely to get representatives who actually concern themselves with the modes of transportation most people in NYC use, and that younger generations increasingly use.

    For the state legislature, not so much.

    I’m not the one with the information to do so, but I’d like to see a comparison of the post-term-limit City Council and the state legislature on transit, bicycle and pedestrian concerns.

    Because these concerns divide the interests of the political/union class from that of the serfs. Which group has shown itself, on average, to be more concerned with the serfs, and the future they will live in 20 years from now?

    Something to think about as I ride my bike on bike lanes past the 25 mph traffic and Citibike stations to a parking garage mandated to allocate space to bicycles by law.