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NYPD Is Making Midtown Sidewalks an Obstacle Course — Where’s de Blasio?

3:37 PM EST on December 5, 2017

Caught between an NYPD fence and moving traffic on Fifth Avenue by Rockefeller Center. Photo: Nicole Gelinas

Nicole Gelinas has filed more Twitter dispatches from Midtown, where NYPD continues to clutter streets and sidewalks with a tangle of barricades.

On 49th Street between Fifth and Sixth avenues, NYPD blocked the roadway to limit motor vehicle access. But the police barriers are also narrowing sidewalks and crosswalks, hampering pedestrian movement in areas that see some of the city's heaviest foot traffic, particularly during the holiday season.

As Gelinas has pointed out, the mayor is responsible for managing the streets, and Police Commissioner James O'Neill reports to him. City Hall hasn't made any announcements about what NYPD is doing. If there's a plan behind it, the public should be informed.

We've asked the mayor's office if the Midtown barricades are NYPD's response to the October greenway truck attack, and if less intrusive long-term measures -- like steel bollards -- will replace them. We'll report if we hear back.

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